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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3answers
2k views

Why isn't phosphorus or nitrogen a limiting nutrient for animals?

Nitrogen and Phosphorus are usually the limiting nutrient for plants, especially for algae. Phosphorus is used for DNA, ATP and phospholipids, and Nitrogen is used for pretty much every protein a ...
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1answer
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What is a partial regulator?

Source: MY textbook-NCERT 12th Biology-Ch: Organisms and Population (Pg 7 of pdf/Pg 223 of the book) Is this graph for Partial regulators correct? Isn't it that animals tend to be regulators first ...
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How can more vegetation can result in more species diversity?

I am a high school student and I am a little confused. In my textbook, while discussing the longitudinal pattern of biodiversity they say one of the reasons is that "tropical areas have more ...
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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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0answers
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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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28 views

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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1answer
100 views

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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4answers
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Value of r (intrinsic rate of natural increase)

What is the current value of 'r' (instrinsic rate of natural increase) in India? How do we calculate it? My book says that In 1981, the r value for human population in India was 0.0205. But this ...
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1answer
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Why do bulls have a hump?

Camels have a hump as an adaptation to the heat. They store fat so that it minimizes the insulating effect the fat would have if distributed over the rest of their bodies. Why do buffaloes/ oxen/ ...
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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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1answer
51 views

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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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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0answers
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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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0answers
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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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1answer
41 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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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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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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0answers
26 views

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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1answer
73 views

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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0answers
59 views

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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0answers
25 views

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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43 views

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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1answer
336 views

What is the diet preference of American cockroaches?

I found a research article1 on the diet preference of German cockroaches. It reveals that those cockroaches prefer to eat bananas most. I wonder if it is the same for American cockroaches. And also, ...
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1answer
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At what temporal scales do forest structures change?

At which time scales do forest stand characteristics (i.e. stand density, species composition, & diameter distributions) change in a temperate European forest which is not managed? Ideally, I'd ...
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1answer
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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2answers
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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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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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3answers
363 views

Can galls be formed from mutualistic relationships?

According to Wikipedia, galls (cecidia) are formed by parasitic insects and mites like gall wasps (Neuroterus albipes). At some metamorphic stage, these organisms alter cell division processes in ...
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2answers
321 views

How do I determine this logistic growth model formula?

The Question Two yeast cells were placed into a special container to which food was continually added, to keep it at a constant concentration. All other factors were set for optimal yeast ...
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1answer
53 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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0answers
129 views

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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1answer
2k views

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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3answers
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Are there species that occupy several roles in the food hierarchy?

Are there species that occupy several roles in the food hierarchy? By role, I am referring to producer, primary consumer, secondary consumer, tertiary consumer, quaternary consumer and so on. ...
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0answers
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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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1answer
39 views

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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2answers
62 views

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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2answers
338 views

What is the biology behind human population dynamics?

A paradox: Human population growth looks a lot like a simple logistic growth pattern. But the simplest interpretation of logistic growth doesn't seem to fit. Is this peculiar to humans, or does it ...
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1answer
33 views

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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3answers
96 views

About animal ecology and one view of this in science fiction [closed]

In the movie the Matrix Agent Smith said something like, 'all animals strive to find a natural 'equilibrium' with there environment ,... a harmonious existence with their ecosystem', ( forgive ...
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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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0answers
18 views

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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0answers
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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3answers
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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2answers
72 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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0answers
26 views

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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1answer
134 views

CO2 availability to phytoplankton in oceans and climate change impacts

I learned through research that increasing levels of atmospheric CO2 was increasing the acidity level of ocean waters. I then was looking into how this was affecting the phytoplankton and read that ...
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2answers
297 views

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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1answer
2k views

What are the predators of Glaucus atlanticus?

I'm researching the Glaucus atlanticus, also known as the blue glaucus, among various other names, but after reading quite a few articles and searching on the Internet as many different ways as I can ...

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