SG_Unit_I_Day_2 - bStudy Guide Unit I(Ecology Day 2 Every...

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bStudy Guide: Unit I (Ecology) Day 2 - Every Species Has Its Niche Read: Colinvaux, Why Big, Fierce Animals Are Rare , Prelude, Chapters 1, 2, and 13. 1. a. List the fundamental questions of ecology, according to Colinvaux. How does life work? Why are there so many different kinds of plants and animals? Why not more? What makes some species common and others rare? Why do the numbers of livings things stay constant? The common remain common and the rare remain rare? Why are some large and some small. Why do they do such peculiar things. b. Summarize Colinvaux's reasoning for how natural selection lies at the heart of each question. Life in ecosystems is a product of natural selection. Species are ever changing, constantly being fashioned by a selective force weeding out the unfit. Natural selection does not invent a design, it merely chooses from the range of varieties that already exist, setting the existing designs of species to be the same. To understand how life works, we must understand why the outcome of natural selection is the actual array of species that we find in any particular place. 2. a. Define "niche." - Is a species place in the grand scheme of things, an animal, or plant’s profession, everything a species does to survive and stay fit? b. Explain how the concept of niche explains the constancy of numbers characteristic of species. This is because the opportunities for each niche are set by circumstance. There cannot be more of a certain species than there are jobs for that species. If a niche is fixed by natural selection so are the numbers. 3. a. Explain why niche is more important than reproductive effort in setting population size. No matter how many offspring are made, the number of nichespaces available, which are
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This note was uploaded on 04/09/2008 for the course BIO 111 taught by Professor Dawley during the Fall '07 term at Ursinus.

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SG_Unit_I_Day_2 - bStudy Guide Unit I(Ecology Day 2 Every...

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