8. Ecosystem Services

8. Ecosystem Services - Ecosystem services Ecosystems -...

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Ecosystem services Ecosystems - Ecosystem: all living things in a particular place and the nonliving (abiotic) environment in which they live o All components of an ecosystem interact with one another o Components of an ecosystem are highly interconnected o Different ecosystems are connected - Ecosystems defined at different levels Energy and matter in ecosystems - Ecosystems provide services that are essential to support all life on earth o Capture and transfer of energy Energy flows through ecosystems Earth is an open energy system o Storage and transfer of matter Matter and elements cycle through ecosystems The right amount at the right time Earth is a closed system with respect to matter Ecosystems energy (figure 57.10) - The energy is an open system with regard to energy o Constant energy from the sun o Very little energy from the sun is captured for use by plants o Emits thermal energy into space that is converted into entropy or a form of energy we can’t use o Only about 1% of solar energy is captured Capture of matter and energy - Autotrophs (self-feeding): synthesize organic compounds (G3P) from inorganic molecules o Photosynthetic : energy from sunlight to make organic compounds (sugars)
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o Autolithotrophs( often live in strange environments such as deep in the bottom of the ocean): oxidize inorganic compounds (H 2 S, S, Fe, H 2 ) to obtain energy to make organic compounds Transfer of matter and energy (figure 57.8) - Heterotrophs : cannot synthesize organic compounds - Live by taking organic compounds and energy from other organisms o Primary consumers: eat producers o Secondary consumers: eat primary consumers - Trophic levels: an energy/matter transfer level in a food chain o how far away you are from an energy source determines your trophic level o autotrophs are always given trophic level 1 o some animals can be multiple trophic level consumers (eat corn and chicken – 1 st and 2 nd levels respectively) o most food chains have four trophic levels at maximum o most energy goes to waste (heat, decomposition, death, etc.) instead of going from level to level, thus less energy is available as you go up trophic levels Trophic level energy transfer (figure 57.12) - How much energy is available to producers? Consumers? 2 nd consumers?? -
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8. Ecosystem Services - Ecosystem services Ecosystems -...

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