Disturbance of a Community The basic effect of human activity on communities is community simplification , an overall reduction of species diversity. Agriculture is a purposeful human intervention in which we create a monoculture of a single favored (crop) species such as corn. Most of the agricultural species are derived from pioneering communities. Inadvertent human intervention can simplify communities and produce stressed communities that have fewer species as well as a superabundance of some species. Disturbances favor early successional (pioneer) species that can grow and reproduce rapidly. Ecosystems and Communities Ecosystems include both living and nonliving components. These living, or biotic, components include habitats and niches occupied by organisms. Nonliving, or abiotic, components include soil, water, light, inorganic nutrients, and weather. An organism's place of residence, where it can be found, is its habitat. A niche is is often viewed as the role of that organism in the community, factors limiting its life, and how it
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