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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37 views

How long does it take to extract a tree core for dendrochronological analysis

I'm going to do research in the tropics and am considering using tree cores for part of my analysis. However, for my planning: How long does it take on average to extract a tree core of a tree with ...
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How would you find and cultivate specific forms of algae?

Knowing how simple and efficient it is to grow algae, I started wondering how a person would specifically isolate and grow different strands of algae. Say I walk to the closest body of water and took ...
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What is the effect of pesticides on worm growth?

As a new semester begins, we were asked to propose ideas for investigatory projects. Our idea revolves around the effects of pesticides on non-target organisms. Since frequent use of pesticides may ...
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How would infection of mosquitos with sterilizing bacteria have any effect?

According to this article from the New York Post, the US just approved the mass release of male mosquitos infected with a bacteria that sterilizes them. The idea, according to the article and some ...
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How do we call a "burst of evolution"?

I have in mind that evolution is not a constant / continuous process and that there are bursts of evolution. Are there terms to refer to the concepts of fast vs slow evolution rates?
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Population where most of the newborns die soon?

Is there an ecological name to describe a population of organisms where most of the newborns die after birth without reproducing? The population as a whole keeps growing, however, because there are ...
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metabolism in kangaroo rats

Many documents (e.g., this, this, and this) state kangaroo rats are special because they can use water produced by metabolism. Is the metabolism of kangaroo rats more efficient in producing water than ...
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Is there a biological term for an activity period that is determined by temparature

In general we refer to the activity period of organisms in terms of the period of the day that they are active. Diurnal, crepuscular, nocturnal, matutinal, and vespertine, for example. There are ...
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What is the difference between abundance and dominance in an ecosystem?

I was reading Hydroperiods of created and natural vernal pools in central Ohio: A comparison of depth and duration of inundation by Debra L. Gamble and William J. Mitsch (2008), and I came across this ...
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Why there is such low diversity of higher plants in sea? [closed]

I think it could be because of mycorrhiza or maybe because of the problem with flowering and seeds. But really, I don't know. edit: by higher plants I meant Embryophytes
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Species richness corrected for area -- should area be log-transformed?

I am doing a study to compare plant species richness (total number of species per site) to a bunch of environmental factors of sites at which these plants were surveyed. Because these sites are ...
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It is correct to construct tree species-based rarefaction curves for birds?

If I register all the species of birds that uses sp1 tree, then, all the species of birds that use sp2 tree, and so on. With this dataset, I can made a rarefaction curve using "number of tree species" ...
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What predates on cactus in the Atacama desert?

Introduction Last week, I was in the Atacama desert where I've seen many cacti. Some / many of them were seemingly suffering from predation. Most of predation seemed to be on cardón, often restricted ...
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Forest Fires and Horsetails

In our school textbook, it is written that sometime forest fires can occur due to rubbing of two horsetails. In the image that I searched online, the plant itself looks thin and rod like with leaflike ...
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Why do some trees flower year round, others only once

Depending on latitude, rains, and pollinator behavior, etc. some trees flower only once a year such as oak trees, others twice (such as pipe organ cati as a response to pollinating bats) and yet ...
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Replicator dynamics giving probabilities greater than 1?

I have a linear replicator equation and I want to simulate its dynamics to find the resting point and hopefully the Nash equilibrium. I defined strategies' payoff as $ \vec f = C*\vec p+ \vec b$, ...
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Have there been any study that document the evidence of the changing ratio of the biomass of different trophic levels?

You would expect a number such as the producers (photosynthetic) biomass to consumers + decomposers biomass ratio is a very important indicator for sustainability. It is also very probable that the ...
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Do Pthirus gorillae remain in gorilla leaf nests after gorillas migrate and abandon them?

Gorillas build leaf nests to sleep in. Do the lice which parasitise gorillas, Pthirus gorilla, remain in gorilla leaf nests after gorillas migrate to new regions (and abandon the old nests)?
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Estimation of species range fragmentation

While discussing species distribution patterns along spatial, temporal or functional gradients one often finds a hump shaped species richness pattern. This is well documented in many taxa and spatial ...
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1answer
54 views

How should you choose from the various methods of constrained ordination?

I have a bacterial OTU matrix from various sample points and times. So for each sample I have the sequence counts across the various OTUs that they were assigned to. I also have a corresponding ...
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Range of dry matter yield per kg CO2 of different plant species

The photosynthetic equation tells us that for every sugar molecule produced 6 molecules of carbon dioxide are used. I'm interested in how much organic matter is produced by a certain quantity of CO2....
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1answer
516 views

Why don't mosquitoes target the visible blood vessels under the skin?

We can see numerous veins under our skin. Why don't mosquitoes suck blood from those vessels? Why don't they use better option?
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How did fig tree take root in trunk of palm tree?

Please see pictures below. I never saw anything like this. Do the roots of the fig tree penetrate the trunk of the palm tree? Is there a symbiotic relationship between the two?
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What is the best way to calculate the biological diversity of samples from bacterial/viral OTU tables?

I have a few large OTU tables of bacterial and viral datasets. The samples are across different sites and times. I would like to visualise the community 'diversity' across the times for which I have ...
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Should you perform an ordination (such as PCA) of abiotic variables before a Redundancy analysis (RDA)?

I have a dataset of viral 'OTUs' across various sample points from different sites/times. I also have meta-data collected at these same sample points, for things like temperature and the ...
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578 views

Biology experiment with algae method help

I'm planning a biology experiment I need to complete. I was planning on measuring the affect of pH on algae growth. I chose chlorella to be the test algae I use (are there any algae that would be ...
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Is it mostly true that predators or parasites traverse wider spatial areas than their prey or hosts?

Does it tend to be true that as you go up the food chain, the species tend to cover wider areas? I am basically asking whether a population's prey varies spatially more than a population's predators ...
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Why do bumble bees run repeatedly into walls?

I have noticed on dozens of occasions that bumble bees will run repeatedly into a wall. Usually between 1 - 5 times before clearing the obstacle or flying away. Credit: Spine Films This source ...
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Why is a butterfly actively looking for cool, dark spot, long before dark?

Here in Croatia, the Woodland grayling Hipparchia fagi flies constantly in the garden of my holiday home. Yesterday, I observed that one of these bufferflies was actively looking for a cool/dark spot ...
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What do we mean by distribution of species? [closed]

What is meant by distribution of species in the following context? density-independent factors tend to limit the distribution of individuals and therefore of species.
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References concerning the relative population sizes of predator and prey

In an ecosystem, say there are two species in a predator-prey relationship. What is the most typical ratio of these species' population densities? For instance, it could be that for every fox, there ...
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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
203 views

How can a species switch from r to K - reproductive strategy in a single generation?

I ask because it seems as though humanity is in the midst of doing exactly this. Only a few decades ago, human population was growing exponentially, and it seemed destined to keep growing until ...
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How do trees communicate in the "Wood Wide Web"?

I read on The New Yorker - The Secrets of the Wood Wide Web that trees communicate with each other through electrical impulses sent through their roots. Through these impulses they can ask other trees ...
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Earth's history: The Great Oxidation Event and the 'Boring Billion'

From what I understand the 'Great Oxidation Event' occurred around 2.4 billion - 2.3 billion years ago, when cyanobacteria flooded Earth’s atmosphere with oxygen. The 'boring billion' period was ...
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What is the body density of insects on average?

What is the body density (in $\text{g}/\text{cm}^3$) of insects and is there a list of animals and their value of body density?
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What sort of biofiltration is best for a small, portable, biofiltration unit?

I've been exploring the idea of a system to allow re-use (drinking) of RV greywater, or at least the freedom to dump in storm drains (I think the requirements are looser about this, but it still has ...
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1answer
150 views

How can DNA profiling be used to determine the number of organisms from a specific species that is within a certain area?

Here is the tedious exam question that asks this: question 8(b). https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B23NLD5L6099VWJya3dfLVJpbmc The question states: In 2007, the brown bear was a threatened ...
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Can bacteria be considered carnivores? [closed]

Ok carnivores are "animals that eat other animals," so what are bacteria that eat animals? Or are they just not important
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What percentage of fish are herbivorous vs. carnivorous?

It appears that the majority of fish we eat are carnivorous, such as salmon and tuna. This got me wondering how common herbivores and carnivores are among fish species. I couldn't find an answer to ...
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Bird diversity and the avian flu

From Learning from the Octopus 1 (p. 201): A complimentary line of defense would be to lower the chance of infection by lowering the prevalence and virulence of diseases…just keep the variability ...
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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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Why does Fallopia Japonica not cause issues in Japan to where it is native unlike other countries?

Fallopia Japonica (also known as Japanese Knotweed), is currently causing a huge issue in the English countryside where it was introduced. This is due to the fact that it spreads and grows rather ...
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Algae or Lichen identification. Coastal BC, Canada

I have tried all books and internet resources I know of, but I still have no idea what this might be — a lichen or something else. At first glimpse, I thought it was something man-made and unnatural, ...
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What is full form of r and K in r-selection species and K-selection species?

What is full form/ meaning of 'r' and 'K' in r-selection species and K-selection species? Does this 'r' means "Random" and the 'K' means "constant"?
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Could we eradicate mosquitoes? [closed]

Researchers have proposed the application of CRISPR/Cas9 and gene drive to genetically alter wild mosquito populations such that they don't transmit malaria. The government of New Zealand has ...
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What happens when you take a deciduous tree and place it in a climate controlled greenhouse?

The greenhouse would have stable level of light, (matched with day/night wavelength brightness changes like outside the greenhouse), humidity and temperature. Do certain processes in the tree not ...
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Example of species that went extinct because of excessive hunting by non-humanoid predators?

I was wondering if there were any species that went extinct for being excessively hunted/eaten by predators? I don't mean human hunting. For example, I wish to know if there's a species of frog that ...
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Did migratory birds' ancestors live in the places of migration?

I was studying birds' migration as a type of instinctive behaviour. But my textbook points out that other than for warm climate and easy food, migratory bird migrate to places where their ancestors ...
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Where can I find comprehensive data on animal distribution?

I'm looking for vertical distribution or tidal height of several intertidal species, specifically from the Pacific Northwest. I considered looking for published research for each species however, my ...

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