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Biodiversity/biological diversity

The sum of an areas organisms, considering the diversity of species, their genes, their populations, and the communities.

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Evolution

A genetic change across generations

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Natural selection

The process by which traits that enhance survival are passed on to future generations more than those that do not

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Charles Darwin

Proposed natural selection as a mechanism for evolution in a way to explain the variety of living things

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Adaptive trait or an adaptation

A trait that promotes success in natural selection

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Natural selection/survival of the fittest

Whatever characteristic that provides individuals the greatest ability to survive will be inherited by their offspring

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Artificial selection

Used by humans to develop more successful species of plants and animals

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Species

A population of organisms who share similar characteristics, can breed and reproduce fertile offspring

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Speciation

The mixing of genes to produce new species

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Population

A group of individuals of the same species that live in the same area

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Habitat

A specific environment in which a species lives, which includes both abiotic and biotic factors

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Alloptric speciation

Speciation due to the separation of populations by location

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Symatric speciation

Formation of species together a single location without geographic separation

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Extinction

The disappearance of an entire species from the face of the earth

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Endemic species

Species (those species that occur in only one location on Earth) are at highest risk

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Native species

Species that occur naturally in a given area or region. Are becoming extinct because of the introduction of exotic invasive species

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Mass extinction

The killing off of massive numbers of species at one time

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Ecology

Interactions among organisms and between organisms and their environment

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The five biology related units of ecological organization

From biggest to smallest: biosphere, ecosystem, community, population, organism.

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Population ecology

The study of populations, necessary to determine what factors will affect the population

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Density

Number of individuals per unit area or volume

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Distribution

Pattern in which individuals are dispersed three habitat

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Size

Number of individuals making up the gene pool

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Clumped Population distribution

Because organisms arrange themselves with the quality of resources is high and because of the formation of social groups

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Density dependent variables that affect population size

Predation, parasitism, competition

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Density independent variables that affect population size

Hurricanes, tsunamis, cold, etc.

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Age structure

The relative proportions of individuals of each age. An age structure of a population will determine its future

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Limiting factors

Any resource that is in short supply

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Carrying capacity

The number of individuals and a population that a given environment can sustain

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Exponential growth

Population increases by a fixed percentage per year