AP BIOLOGY SUMMER ASSIGNMENT

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1 AP BIOLOGY SUMMER ASSIGNMENT AP BIOLOGY includes topics in a college course for biology. One topic, Ecology, is usually very briefly mentioned in lecture in the year course. There are so many topics to cover! Since emphasis is placed on understanding concepts, not plain memorizing of facts, you can read the chapters on Ecology as a summer assignment. Ecology is the scientific study of the interactions between organisms and the environment. Because of its great scope, ecology is an enormously complex and also an exciting area of Biology. To gain a basic understanding of the richness of the biosphere so we can conserve and sustain that richness, read chapters and complete the following worksheets that accompany the chapters and the questions. This will allow us to concentrate on many of the remaining major topics. This assignment is due the first day we meet before Labor Day.

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16 Questions to answer for the chapters on Ecology. Read the chapters first, complete the worksheets, and then answer the following questions. Write your answers on white lined paper or type. These will be due before Labor Day. 1. Identify three populations (plants and/or animals) that are actively managed by humans. For each, identify two factors in their environment that affect its abundance 2. What factors, other than birth and death rates, affect the size of a population? 3. Explain why populations cannot grow multiplicatively for extended periods of time. 4. Yellow star-thistle is a spiny annual plant native to the Mediterranean region. The species is a noxious weed, unpalatable to livestock, that has invaded several regions of the United States, including an imaginary farm operated by Rancher Jane. a. Jane carefully inspects her ranch every year. In 2001, there was no star thistle, but in 2002, she finds the weed population has grown to cover 2 hectares. Based on this pattern, predict how many hectares would star-thistle infest in 2004, 2005, and in 2006, assuming that the population is growing multiplicatively? b. Imagine that Rancher Jane did not see any thistle star in 2001, but she discovers in 2002 that the star-thistle population has suddenly infested 32 hectares of her pasture. How many years does she have until the weed completely covers the pasture if its population is growing additively? Multiplicatively? 5. Extinction of populations in small patches can easily occur. Explain why this is true. Identify a fragmented habitat in your local area. What animals are found in this habitat and describe the risks they face. 6. Sidewalks can easily divide an area into small meta-populations for small organisms such as snails. For each of the barriers below, pick one organism that might be limited in its distribution due to that indicated barrier, and explain why you chose it. a. Parking lot b. Small road c. Interstate highway d. Housing development 7. For each of the relationships shown below, mark in the appropriate column if the first species mentioned is affected negatively (-), positively (+), or bit at all (0). Do the same for the second species, then write the type of interaction in the third column. The first example is completed for you. Choices competition, consumer-resource, mutualism, commensalism, parasitism.

17 Example American bison feeds on grasses Wrasses (small fish) clean the teeth of larger fish Mosquito feeds on the blood of a deer Bread mold secretes penicillin that kills bacteria in the local area which generally have little to no effect on the mold A cactus wren builds a nest in a cholla cactus without affecting the cactus A hawk captures a small squirrel for food A rabbit rests in the shade of a small bush Deer create a trail through a forest where they routinely travel. Plovers (a bird) remove insects from the backs of large animals. Species 1 Species 2 Type of Interaction 8. In a forest, many different types of trees can be found. Identify and discuss how three different biotic factors can affect the growth and health of the trees. 9. Explain how predation is different from parasitism. 10. In a forest ecosystem, foxes prey on small mammals including rabbits and mice. Explain why foxes are unlikely to consume all of the rabbits, causing their extinction. 11. Explain what happens when two different species compete for the same resources in the same location at the same time. 12. Lake Victoria in Africa is home to many different species of fish known as cichlids. In one location, a researcher saw 5 different species of cichlids repeatedly in the same location. Using the concept of resource partitioning, explain how these different species of fish can coexist in the same location. 13. Discuss why kudzu continues to spread so quickly across the US. 14. Discuss the impact of kudzu on species diversity in afflicted areas. 15. Explain why the inadvertent introduction of introduced species has increased during the last century. Identify 3 ways that introduced species are introduced to new areas. 16. Despite the many decades that have passed after the eruption of the volcano Krakatau, only now are stable communities of organisms becoming established on the island. Explain why these communities are not exactly identical to the communities present when the volcano erupted in Explain why there are fewer high-level consumers (wolves and weasels) than primary consumers in Yellowstone Park. 18. Explain how each of the following abiotic factors can affect the stability of populations: water, nutrient availability, availability of nesting materials and sites. 19. Explain how each of the following biotic factors can affect the stability of populations: food chains and food webs, species diversity, population density, algal blooms. 20. Abundant biodiversity is often equated with stability in ecosystems. Explain why.

18 21. Explain the term biome and discuss how biomes are defined. Describe the type of biome you live in, linking your description to the definition of that biome.

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