[GHS Sophomores Ecology Unit]


Ecology: Study of relationships between living things & their environment. All life & all nonliving factors affect each other.

Environment: All the living (biotic) & nonliving (abiotic) things that surrounds a living thing.

Biotic Examples: lion, tigers, bears, trees, venus flytrap, starflower, candy flower, bacteria, yeast, amoebas, insects, humans, fungus, moss, mushrooms, worms, etc....

Abiotic Examples: Rocks, soil, water, air, sand, dirt, ice (glaciers), fossils, buildings, roads, cars, etc...


1. Organism: One living thing. (Ex.--1 zebra.)

2. Population: A group of similar life forms in an area. (Ex- Herd of zebras.)

3. Community: A group of populations that interact with each other & the environment. (Ex.--zebras, lions, antelopes, hyaenas, giraffes, bushes, trees, grass, soil, water, air, etc......)

4. Ecosystem: A group of communities interacting with each other & their non-living surroundings. (All the grassland communities of Africa, or all the desert communities of USA, etc...)

5. Biosphere: All the earth's ecosystems interacting with the physical environment. This includes all ife as well as the earth itself and the atmosphere. This it what we call spaceship earth.

Roles of Living Things: How they interact:

A. Producer: Green plants. Use the sun's energy to make food for thiemselves & others.

B. Consumers: All creatures that muste eat other creatures to get the energy they need to live. Types of consumers include:

1. Herbivores: Eat mostly plant materials.

Ex.--Cows, horses, gerbils, ducks, brontosaurus, koalas, etc...

2. Carnivores: Eat mostly meat of animals.

Ex.--Lions, tigers, beagles, hawks, centipede, venus flytrap, etc....

3. Omnivores: Can eat about equal amounts of plants & animals.

Ex.--Bears, humans, chimps, raccoon, opossum, etc...

4. Scavengers Small organisms that eat dead animals & plants.

Ex.--Flies, maggots, vulture, hyaena, gulls, pigeons, crows, bald eagle.

5. Decomposers: Microscopic organisms that break down the living matter of dead creatures into nonliving soil, which plants are then able to use again.

Ex.----Bacteria, fungi (mushrooms, yeast, & molds).

[GHS Sophomores Ecology Unit]