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Human Ecology IV - Human Biological Ecology-1.ppt

Human Ecology IV - Human Biological Ecology-1.ppt - HUMAN...

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HUMAN BIOLOGICAL ECOLOGY
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The maximum number of individuals (biomass) that can be supported by ecosystem resources is called the Carrying Capacity
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Human carrying capacity is determined by: Ecosystem food resources The number of edible species The density of edible species The year-round availability of edible species Biological Constraints Energy needed to maintain body size Energy needed for reproduction Energy needed for growth Energy needed for activity Behavior Behavior that is biologically-based (behavioral ecology) Behavior that is learned (cultural ecology)
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Human Biological Ecology considers the energy requirements of humans relative to their unique anatomical and physiological characteristics. Human energy requirements can be understood in terms of four essential aspects of human biology: Size Reproduction Growth Activity Pattern The ecosystem structure within which the unique anatomical and physiological characteristics of human biology evolved must be replicated everywhere humans now live.
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The size of an animal determines its energy requirements However, larger animals have lower metabolic rates relative to size 1. Energy requirements for body size
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Basal metabolic rate ( BMR ) is the rate of energy expenditure per unit time while at rest. The BMR of a 20 year old male, who is 6 feet tall and weighs 165 lbs is about 2000 Cal per day The BMR of a 20 year old female, who is 5’8” tall and weighs 135 lbs is about 1500 Cal per day In addition to gender and weight, BMR will vary, depending upon body composition (particularly fat versus non-fat tissues) and age
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Energy expenditure breakdown at rest Liver 27% Brain 19% Heart 7% Kidneys 10% Skeletal Muscle 18% Fat 0% other organs 19% Our basic energy needs are determined by the types of tissues that we have, and their metabolic requirements
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2. Energy requirements for reproduction Human gestation is a slight variation on a general primate theme. Large primate mothers have large (and relatively mature) primate babies because all primates are characterized by relatively long periods of intra- uterine growth and development, during which brain growth is emphasized. The energy requirement to sustain human pregnancy is roughly 300 calories per day - or about 81,000 calories in addition to normal daily metabolic requirements over a 9 month period.
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The unique aspect of human reproduction is that post-partum anovulatory periods are so short. While human birth spacing will certainly vary relative to energy availability, the reproductive potential of humans far exceeds that of non- human primates, and of most mammals.
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3 . Energy requirements for human growth During growth, energy is necessary to support two processes: The respiration of existing tissues The chemical processes that result in increased cell size or increased cell number
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The human growth pattern is prolonged compared to all other mammals Human growth is characterized by a initial period of rapid skeletal and muscle
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