#22 - Biodiversity & Conservation

#22 - Biodiversity & Conservation - What is...

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1 Biodiversity, Ecology, and Conservation How are these related? What is biodiversity? The number of species? – Does it include genetic diversity within a species? The number of ecological links? Some combination of the number of species and the number of links? Some indicator of the number of trophic levels? Some “higher level” indicator of community “function” overall? Biocomplexity What promotes “biodiversity”? • Physical diversity – lots of “places” for organisms to exist without competing – The stream at the bottom has a greater variety of depths, currents, substrates, etc. It also has many more species of aquatic invertebrates.
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2 What promotes biodiversity? • Forests with vertical structure, and mixed species forests are high in bird species diversity More habitat heterogeneity (producing biodiversity) Factors restricting annual terrestrial productivity • water • nutrients • temperature • inefficient use of light • successional stage of plant community • overall light intensity • grazers! NPP vs. Biomass for a successional sequence of plants • How would you think the NPP vs. biomass ratio might change as a bare plot of land undergoes succession? Why? – grasses b herbs b shrubs b trees
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3 In natural communities, species occasionally invade, and species occasionally disappear, with the result being a “balance” Theory of Island Biogeography Is Biodiversity related to Stability? • One argument for the preservation of a diverse mixture of habitats and species is that: biodiversity b stability Hairston experiments • Set up experimental ecosystems – 2, or 3 tropic levels • bacteria prey
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#22 - Biodiversity & Conservation - What is...

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