31 - ecosystem ecology - Ecosystem Ecology What is it? The...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
1 Ecosystem Ecology What is it? ± The study of the movement of energy and matter through ecosystems. Ecosystem ecology operates at a scale above that of communities but it is defined more by subject matter than by scale. Energy ± Almost all energy in ecosystems ultimately comes from sunlight ± Rare exceptions in some caves and marine thermal vents ± Energy takes a one way trip through ecosystems due to the second law of thermodynamics ± With each change in form, some energy is degraded to a less useful form and given off into the surroundings, usually as low- quality heat.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
2 Why this @#$% focus on plants? ± Because energy is degraded from one trophic level to the next, in most situations, the majority of the energy and biomass in a system is in plants (primary producers ) ± Therefore understanding how the system functions requires particular— although not exclusive—attention on plants Primary Production ± Primary production : Fixation of energy by autotrophs in an ecosystem. ± Rate of primary production
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 8

31 - ecosystem ecology - Ecosystem Ecology What is it? The...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online