Questions tagged [ecology]

The study of the spatial and temporal patterns of the distribution and abundance of organisms, including causes and consequences (Scheiner, S.M. and Willig, M.R., 2008. A general theory of ecology. Theoretical Ecology, 1(1), pp.21-28. doi:10.1007/s12080-007-0002-0)

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16 views

the effect of aquatic photoautotrophs on CO2 concentration in the air

The CO2 concentration in the air is more strongly influenced by the northern hemisphere than the southern hemisphere. A given explanation is that the northern hemisphere contains more terrestrial ...
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Is there a way to use presence-absence data to inform a sampling design for a more specific survey?

I am currently in the process of designing a spatial survey to assess the abundance/density of woody debris across an ecosystem with multiple defined habitats (i.e. I am interested in not only the ...
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Does surface to volume ratio matter for cold-blooded species with regards to temperature?

While surface grows quadratically with scale, volume growth is cubic. Temperature exchange (gain and loss) of animals is mostly dependant on surface area (the more area, the faster) whereas heat ...
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does more biomass mean more energy?

I am a high school student and I am very confused about ecological pyramids. My textbook states that the biomass of zooplankton in an aquatic ecosystem is more than that of phytoplankton (I don't know ...
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How does stratified sampling work in a spatial ecology setting?

I am designing an experiment where I want to sample a region 5 different habitat types in order to compare density of "something" across them. The habitats have defined and differing sizes - ...
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does a considerable amount of GPP/biomass get loss due to respiration?

I am a high school student and I am confused in a topic called productivity in ecology, books says that net primary productivity is the biomass available after respiratory loss but the energy used ...
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80 views

Kleiber's law and Bergmann's rule

I was researching that deep-sea animals are much larger than their close relatives in the upper ocean (gigantism), and from what I've seen, this is due to two rules: Kleiber's law and Bergmann's rule. ...
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Calibrating mechanistic species distribution models for plants

I am interested in plant ecology. I would like to model the dynamics of the distribution of a group of Alpine plant species on a certain mountain. Let us assume that the dynamics can be described by a ...
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Apply Shannon-Weiner index to evaluate single-cell sample balance?

I would like to identify single-cell clusters where each sample is evenly represented in it. Is it OK to calculate the Shannon-Weiner index from the sample counting data of each cluster? I am worrying ...
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What is the effect of an acidic solution on hydrolytic enzymes?

I'm working on a school research project and my research question is "What is the effect of increasing concentrations of Acid X on hydrolytic enzymes, measured through the loss of mass of leaf ...
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40 views

Is there an published method for removing the effect of isolation by distance from genetic distances?

Isolation by distance is the phenomena that (even partial) reproductive isolation due to geographical distance between reproductive populations will result in greater genetic distance between those ...
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Have orcas ever been observed to be eaten by another species?

Orcas are well known to prey on just about everything that lives in the ocean, even including great white sharks. Yet in a lot of cases I know that the food chain is not unidirectional, there are many ...
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Which trophic level has the highest population in a food chain?

The basic trophic levels in any food chain are the producers, the consumers and the decomposers. Most of the websites I've searched say they are the decomposers. But shouldn't it be the producers? In ...
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How to convert system of equations with explicit substrate consumption into an implicit one?

I have a description of competition between two bacteria that is described by the system of equations: S = substrate, μ = bacterial division rate, K = half saturation constant, y = yield (cells per ...
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Why did ALL dinosaurs go extinct?

Why did all dinosaurs, rather than just some of them, go extinct during the K-T extinction event? Birds are an exception, but being able to fly, they are also a very special kind of creature, and ...
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Apportionment models, niche theory, neutral theory

I am trying to understand the relation between apportionment models, niche theory, and neutral theory of biodiversity. Wikipedia seems to suggest that the first two are the same thing, whereas the ...
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Sediment Size and Mayfly (Explanation + Literature)

I am doing investigation into association of sediment size with the movement of mayfly nymphs in a choice chamber, sampling the organisms from a stream. I will be doing a chi square test to determine ...
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Co-culture models of bacterial invasion: where to find them?

I am interested in models showing how pathogenic bacteria (namely Escherichia coli O157) can overcome commensal species (thus, causing a disease). This is a basic concept in biology but I can't find a ...
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How can I learn botany/plant ID by myself?

I am interested in sources and methods regarding botany and plant ID, and being a self-taught person. Textbooks, sites etc. Thank you all in advance!
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57 views

Can hunting of large specimens of a species make the size and weight of the species tend to be smaller?

Siberian tigers in the wild don't grow as much as they used to be in past (in the 1900s). Their average weight was measured 176 kg in 2005 study. But it was also said that those tigers observed in ...
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Soil microbiology reference

I am after some good reference on Soil Microbe Ecology and Biology. I am a biophysicist, and have read the very gentle approach of "Life in the Soil" (James Nardi). Another book I have been ...
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Caloric Mimicry

Was thinking about natural "zero calorie" sweetness and how these compounds could come to be via evolution. I was specifically thinking about monk fruit. While artificial selection likely ...
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What is this Patagonian biome?

This image was taken in Patagonia, near the Torres Del Paine National Park. What type of biome this is? There are trees and other vegetation, but they seem mostly dried. I think this is either a semi-...
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Are there phage-eating bacteria?

If phages (bacterium-eating viruses) prowl on bacteria, are there bacteria (or other micro-organisms) that hunt phages for food? They are rich in proteins anyway... Are there studies on this subject? ...
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What global habitat classification systems are there?

I am an IT guy, not a biologist or ecologist, but have ended up with (roughly) the task "given this Latitude/Longitude pair, return the 'habitat' at that location". The points of interest in ...
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What is disease risk?

I would like to find an accurate definition of disease risk for virus ecology. I am searching in articles and in none of them this term is defined, they only mention it. ...
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Why do predatory mites have to be introduced multiple times?

I'm combating spider mite infestation using either Phytoseiulus persimilis or Amblyseius californicus. After extensive study of the literature, I'm still unsure why the producers of these predatory ...
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Is my understanding of the Bergmann's rule correct? (mass is secondary)

According to Wikipedia, Bergmann's rule applies because animals living in colder areas have greater surface-area-to-volume ratio. If I understand that correctly, the advantage of the bulkier bodies ...
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Tradeoff between pathogen adaptability and infectivity

Is there a kind of inverse proportionality relation between a pathogen ability to infect new hosts and its ability to evade the immune defenses/medication? The background: The question is motivated by ...
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1answer
52 views

Is a pampa an example of ecological succession?

I'm not very sure if a pampa is an example of an ecological succession. The reason of my doubt is due I've remember hearing that a Pampa is formed when a Valley which has had a river on it, no longer ...
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20 views

Where is a coacervate located in the levels of organization?

I'm confused about where to position in the hierarchy of the levels of organization of living things, the coacervate in the context of Oparin-Haldane's theory of the origin of life. In short, ...
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How does the availability of a reference genome aid in microsatellite analysis?

I'm planning to use microsatellites to examine fine-scale population structure between several breeding colonies of birds. Most of my DNA will be extracted from feathers and the yield isn't sufficient ...
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66 views

Why is the consumer/producer biomass ratio higher in the oceans?

According to Bar-on et al. (2018) (see figure 2), the terrestrial consumer/producer biomass ratio is 20/450 while the marine consumer/producer biomass ratio is 5/1 (in Gton of carbon). Why is the ...
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Do fish depend on plants for survival?

As far as I know, all land life depends on plants for survival. Plants convert sunlight to energy using photosynthesis, herbivores consume plants, and carnivores consume herbivores. All the energy is ...
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How many giant kelp are there per square meter?

In a high-density giant kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) bed how many "holdfasts" or roots would there be per square meter of seafloor on average?
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What is the rate of bacterial cell death due to viruses on land?

"The rate of viral infection in the oceans stands at 1 × 10^23 infections per second, and these infections remove 20–40% of all bacterial cells each day." - https://www.nature.com/articles/...
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Techniques to find out which species are endangered

Most countries have a list of endangered species and international organisations too issue such lists of vulnerable and endangered species. What mathematical or statistical models are those estimates ...
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Optimal agriculture: maximum yield with minimum environmental impact

I read more and more stuff about alternative method of agriculture such as permaculture. Howerver, I'm not an ecologist or biologist so I don't know where to look for really good and serious articles /...
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Is this question about limiting factors answerable?

This is from a Singapore-Cambridge GCE O-level Biology exam (a national exam for 16-year-olds). The exam board maintains that the question is "correct and accurate"—but isn't there a typo in ...
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361 views

Why don't the female lions in a pride help their male lion to protect their children from other males?

I watched a dozen of videos taping the fights between male lions; none of them involve female lions assisting in the fight. It is also known that the male lion who take-over the pride will kill all ...
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1answer
45 views

rapidly growing mold on flat surface

For an experiment I'm conducting, I need to grow mold on a 2 foot square piece of white fiberglass. I'm in Florida, with high heat and humility, so mold already grows easily. I've seen elsewhere that ...
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1answer
358 views

Can a second mass extinction by microbes happen?

Science Daily reports that the mass extinction at the end of Permian period happened by the Methanosarcina archaea wiping out 90% of species: Methane-producing microbes may be responsible for the ...
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What is the fate of the typical tree?

Walking through the local established broadleaf forests dominated by oak and tulip poplar (Eastern U.S.), it is common to find patches of young tree saplings, say 10-20 oak or tulip poplar saplings ...
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81 views

What is the mass of carbon dioxide absorbed by an oak tree in one year?

I want to understand the environmental impact of oak trees due to absorption carbon dioxide. So my question is, what is the mass of carbon dioxide absorbed by an oak tree in one year?
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What is the defining characteristics of a Gap Species?

For the following competitive exam question: A road is constructed through a tropical rain forest, following which a population of a species of butterflies declines. Which of the following is NOT a ...
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94 views

What is the primary cause of death for small animals in urban and suburban areas?

Small birds (sparrows, robins, jays, finches) and mammals (squirrels, rats, opossums, raccoons) are a common sight in many urban and suburban communities with green space. However, I observe carcasses ...
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How do microbes spread from a small place to a very large place?

Bacteria are very small, so they cannot move very far on their own. Viruses cannot move themselves at all. So how does a specific type of bacteria or virus spread from a small place to a very large ...
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Phytomass and photosynthesis

I have been introduced to the term "phytomass" and I was wondering if phytomass can be both photosynthetic and non-photosynthetic?
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What allows diverse ecology to thrive despite forces reducing species diversity?

Ecology and business are a useful model for understanding one another. One species fills a niche until it is outcompeted by another just as one business fills a niche until it is outcompeted by ...
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On stochastic Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model

I am currently working (as a mathematician) on some estimations involving an stochastic predator-prey type model in which some of the coefficients have been perturbed by a Brownian Motion yielding to ...

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