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Ecology - the study of the interactions of
organisms with one another and with their
Ecologist – a scientist who studies ecology
Biotic factors
◦ The living parts of an ecosystem
 Ex.: plants, animals, fungi, bacteria
◦ Bio = living; life
Abiotic factors
◦ The nonliving parts of an ecosystem
 Ex: water, sunlight, oxygen, temperature, soil
◦ A = non; not; without
◦ Bio = living; life
Single living thing
A group of individuals of the same species
that live together.
All the different populations of species that
live together in an area
All of the biotic (living) factors
Made up of all the living and nonliving things
(biotic and abiotic factors) that interact in a
particular area
◦ Examples: prairie, mountain stream, ocean, forest
An organism’s habitat provides it with the
things it needs to survive:
◦ Food, water, shelter
A single ecosystem may contain many
Organisms live in different habitats because
they have different requirements for survival.
The part of Earth where life exists
◦ The biosphere includes the top portion of Earth’s crust, all
the waters that cover Earth’s surface, and the atmosphere
that surrounds Earth.
The biosphere is made up of different
environments that are home to different kinds of
◦ For example, desert environments receive little rain.
◦ Cactus plants, coyotes, and lizards are included in the life
of the desert.
In groups, complete the following diagram
to illustrate the various levels of ecological
Choose an animal.
Inside each level,
draw a picture that
illustrates your
animal at each
Give two examples of how abiotic factors can
affect an ecosystem.
What would happen to the other organisms in the
salt-marsh ecosystem if the cordgrass suddenly