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Africa Storyline

TermDefinition
Phylogenetic tree A diagram that represents evolutionary relationships among organisms
DNA deoxyribonucleic acid, a self-replicating material which is present in nearly all living organisms as the main constituent of chromosomes. It is the carrier of genetic information.
RNA Single stranded nucleic acid that contains the sugar ribose
Nitrogen base A nitrogenous base is simply a nitrogen-containing molecule that has the same chemical properties as a base.
Amino acid a simple organic compound containing both a carboxyl (—COOH) and an amino (—NH2) group.
predator Capture and feeds on another organism
prey an animal that is hunted and killed by another for food.
Characteristics of Life All living organisms share several key characteristics or functions: order, sensitivity or response to the environment, reproduction, growth and development, regulation, homeostasis, and energy processing.
reproduction the action or process of making a copy of something.
homeostasis Relatively constant internal physical and chemical conditions that organisms maintain
evolution Change over time; the process by which modern organisms have descended from ancient organisms
adaptation Heritable characteristic that increases an organism’s ability to survive and reproduce in an environment
genetics Scientific study of heredity
growth the process of increasing in physical size.
cells Basic unit of all forms of life
metabolism The combination of chemical reactions through which an organism builds up or breaks down materials
Food chain Series of steps in an ecosystem in which organism transfer energy by eating and being eaten
Food web Network of complex interactions formed by feeding the relationships among the various organisms in an ecosystem
producer An autotrophic organism capable of producing complex organic compounds from simple inorganic molecules through the process of photosynthesis (using light energy) or through chemosynthesis (using chemical energy) Supplement.
consumer Organism relies on other organisms for its energy and food supply, also called a heterotroph
herbivore Organism that obtains energy by eating only plants
carnivore Organism that obtains energy by eating only meat
omnivore Organisms that obtain energy by eating both plants and animals
detritivore Organisms that feed on plants and animal remains and other dead matter
decomposer Organisms that break down and obtain energy from dead organic matter
Flow of energy The movement of energy around an ecosystem by biotic and abiotic means.
10 % rule when energy is passed in an ecosystem from one trophic level to the next, only ten percent of the energy will be passed on.
Energy pyramid graphical model of energy flow in a community.
kilocalorie A measure of heat energy that is equal to the amount of heat needed to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water by one degree Centigrade at one atmospheric pressure.
Trophic level level or a position in a food chain or ecological pyramid.
Levels of organization The hierarchy of complex biological structures and systems that define life using approach arranged from the simplest to most complex are organelle, cells, tissue, organs, organ systems, organisms, populations, communities, ecosystems
mass measure of the amount of matter in an object.
biomass mass of living biological organisms in a given area or ecosystem at a given time.
heat A form of energy that is transferred from between objects due to a temperature difference; the thermal motion of atoms and molecules
organism a living thing that has an organized structure, can react to stimuli, reproduce, grow, adapt, and maintain homeostasis.
species group of organisms that can reproduce with one another in nature and produce fertile offspring
population group of organisms that can reproduce with one another in nature and produce fertile offspring
community interacting group of various species in a common location.
ecosystem A system that includes all living organisms (biotic factors) in an area as well as its physical environment (abiotic factors) functioning together as a unit.
biome A major ecological community of organisms adapted to a particular climatic or environmental condition on a large geographic area in which they occur.
biosphere zone of air, land and water where organisms exist.
climate long term patterns of temperature, humidity, wind, etc. in an area.
habitat place where an organism or a community of organisms lives, including all living and nonliving factors or conditions of the surrounding environment.
allele one of the possible forms of a gene.
gene fundamental, physical, and functional unit of heredity.
Female sex chromosome two of the same kind of sex chromosome (XX), and are called the homogametic sex.
Male sex chromosome two different kinds of sex chromosomes (XY), and are called the heterogametic sex.
Gene pool collection of different genes within an interbreeding population
biodiversity the variability among living organisms from all sources including, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems
Genetic diversity total number of genetic characteristics in the genetic makeup of a species.
karyotype chromosome count of an organism and what these chromosomes look like under a light microscope.
Created by: rleffingwell