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AP Biology Notes Ch.

46 Community Structure and Biodiversity


46.1 Which Factors Shape Community Structure? Species richness: the number of species and relative abundances in a community Structure is a result of: Physical and chemical conditions most prevalent in habitat (temp, rainfall, soil type, etc) Type, amount, and availability of food and other essential resources Evolutionary history of habitat and of species that reside within it Morphological, physiological, and behavioral traits that increase survivorship of species How species interact with one another Natural and human-induced physical disturbance that can vary in severity and frequency All species of community have a niche (profession) that makes them special to the habitat Fundamental niche prevails even in absence of competition or other factors that could limit the gathering of resources Realized niche results from when constraining factors play upon the species, realized niche shifts over time in response to a multitude of changes Symbiosis: close associations between two/ more species Commensalism: directly helps one species but affects the other little or not at all (birds roosting in a tree) Mutualism: both species benefit (two-way exploitation of each other) Intersecific competition: one species wins/ loses with respect to access to some resource Predation and parasitism: direct benefit to one species (predators kill and eat pray, parasites live in host but rarely kill)

46.2 Mutualism Facultative mutualism: interaction helpful but not vital Obligatory mutualism: each species must have the other in order to complete life cycle and reproduce (yucca plants and yucca moths need each other, pollination and food) (anemone fish hide in sea anemones and fend off other fish that like to eat anemones)

46.3Competitive Interactions Inter-communal competition is not as competitive as inter-species competition because requirements of two species may be similar but never as close as they are among individuals of same species Interference competition: one species controls/ blocks access of other species to a resource, regardless of abundance (some plants taint soil around them so others cant grow) Exploitative competition: different species have equal access to resources, however one is more skilled at using it Competitive exclusion: if the need for resources by two species overlaps to a certain extent they can NOT coexist indefinitely Competitive interactions between species that coexist suppress growth rate of both species Resource partitioning: a subdividing of some category of similar resources, that allows for competing species to coexist (different fruit sizes for birds)

46.4 Predator-Prey Interactions Coevolution: species that evolve jointly as their close ecological interactions exert natural selection pressure on each of the species through the generations Things like prey density, hiding places, other prey animals, and carrying capacities determine how predators limit number of prey animals Predators keep prey from reaching carrying capacity of habitat

46.5 An Evolutionary Arms Race Camouflage: using body form, patterning, color, behavior, or a combination of these to blend in with the surroundings and avoid detection Mimicry: ecological association between one species that is a model for deception and a second, different species that mimics its form or behavior to appear more dangerous or less appetizing Chemical Defenses: the use of bitter, hard-to-digest, or dangerous repellents as a defense, in plants and animals, many species announce their dangerous toxins with warning coloration, predators recognize and avoid those colors Predators can counter all these adaptations with stealth, camouflage, and other ways of avoiding repellents and countermeasures

46.6 Parasite-Host Interactions Parasite infections have effects on populations by causing sterility, making hosts easier prey, less attractive to mates, shift the male-female ratio

Parasitic infection must last long enough to let it reproduce offspring, therefore lessthan-fatal effects on hosts are expected to be more favorable in natural selection Parasites may live in different hosts at different times, in different numbers of hosts, and have different ways of infecting new hosts Parasitoids: immature stage of parasitic insect that matures in different insects body, then devour from inside out, parasitoids always kill the host directly Social parasites: take advantage of social habits and behavior of host animals in order to complete life cycle Parasites and parasitoids are commercially raised and used as biological controls, used instead of pesticides Effective Biological Controls display: Ability to adapt to specific host species and habitat Good at locating hosts Population growth is high compared to hosts Offspring are good at dispersing Make a type III functional response to prey

46.8 Ecological Succession Pioneer species: start of community structure, opportunistic colonizers of new/ newly vacated habitats; they disperse quickly, mature quickly, and produce numerous offspring (lichens, mosses, hardy flowering plants, etc.) Primary succession: process that starts when pioneering species colonize a barren habitat (new volcanic islands, land after a receding glacier) Pioneers improve soil and other environmental conditions, paving the way for their replacement species (new ones are often mutualists) New species grow off dead pioneer species and shade out low growing lichens and the like Secondary succession: disturbed area within community recovers, if favorable soil conditions remain this can be fast, commonly in abandoned fields, burn areas, after volcanic eruptions Intermediate disturbance hypothesis: species richness of community becomes greatest between disturbances of moderate intensity/ frequency Successional Mechanisms: Tolerance: early colonizer has no effect on which species colonize habitat after itself Inhibition: early colonizer changes conditions of habitat in specific ways that prevent colonization by later species Facilitation: early colonizers improve conditions for later ones

46.9 Species Interactions and Community Instability Keystone species: disproportionately large effect on community relative to its abundance, removal of species can either increase or decrease species diversity in habitat Geographic dispersal: species of established community move to another habitat and successfully take up residence there Exotic species: resident of an established community that dispersed from its home and became established elsewhere

46.11 Biogeographic Patterns in Community Structure For most plants and animals, number of coexisting species is greatest in the tropics (close to equator) and systematically declines as distance from equator increases This is explained by tropical regions receiving more sunlight, more rain, longer growing seasons, more available resources, species here have been evolving for a longer period of time, and species richness is self-reinforcing (more plants = more herbivores = more predators) Area affect: larger islands can support more species than smaller ones the same distance from colonizing source Large islands tend to have more varied habitats and more elevations, this promotes species richness Distance effect: if there are only a few species that arrive at an island because of its remoteness they are naturally adapted for long distance dispersal