Biology Homework Chapter 38: Conservation Biology
Textbook Assignment: Chapter 38: Conservation Biology, 1-12
- 38.1: Species loss occurs through human alteration of the trophic structure, through both human and natural chemical recycling, and through natural disturbances, but it seems clear that the rate of species loss has increased in the last century primarily through human activity.
- 38.2: Healthy environments capable of sustaining species over the long term require biodiversity, i.e., genetic diversity within species, rich species biomes (many species), and ecosystem diversity with species relating in different ways within the community.
- Loss of biodiversity decreases resources for human survival, especially where keystone species are eradicated.
- The primary problems are habitat destruction with resulting loss of shelter and food for existing species, introduced species that can out-compete native species for available resources, or over-exploitation, where existing species are harvested to the point that the population is no longer self-sustaining. Pollution is a special form of habitat destruction that results in diseased or weakened species.
- 38.3: Air pollution and destruction of the ozone layer shift energy received in the UV range and may increase the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, resulting in general increases in global temperatures.
- 38.4: Both the cause and possible solutions are hotly debated among governments and environmentalists. Measurements of atmospheric CO2 indicate huge increases over the last two centuries (assuming prior extrapolations are correct).
- 38.5: The ramifications of global climate change, if these continue, will affect weather and agriculture, natural habitats, ocean levels, and force human population migrations.
- 38.6: Global climate change is nothing new, but as human population has grown, more people are affected by recent changes than in the past.
- 38.7: Ensuring genetic diversity spurs efforts to protect endangered populations.
- 38.8: Creating sustainable ecosystems and collections of related ecosystems is key to preserving habitats for endangered plants and animals.
- 38.9: One method of creating sustainable ecosystems involves setting aside protected areas to reduce pollution and human development.
- 38.10: Zoned reserves can be monitored and encouraged to return to a "natural" state; this often involves government support and may occur at the cost of industrial development.
- 38.11: An example of connecting ecosystems into larger landscapes to preserve biodiversity is the Yellowstone to Yukon conservation effort.
- 38.12: Studies of restoration efforts help us learn what works...and what actions have unintended consequences.
- 38.13: By creating sustainable development, we may be able to continue human population support at a higher level for everyone, and reduce famine and competition for resources that lead to political conflict.
Read the following weblecture before chat: Conservation Biology
Take notes on any questions you have, and be prepared to discuss the lecture in chat.
Perform the study activity below:
Use the Virtual Urchin at the University of Washington to study how CO2 increases in the atmosphere has promoted Our Acidifying Ocean.
- How have CO2 levels changed in the atmosphere since 1960? Is this change significant? Why?
- Compare the acidity of different household substances. Which are the most acidic? Which are more basic?
- Has the ocean pH level changed during the last 20 million years? By how much?
- How does CO2 affect substances in the ocean, such as levels of carbonic acid, bicarbonate, and calcium. How do changes in the concentrations of these compounds affect marine organisms?
- Explore how different carbon levels will increase or decrease compounds needed for coral reef survival. Then look at other marine organisms that use or ignore calcium compounds.
Chat Preparation Activities
- Essay question: The Moodle forum for the session will assign a specific study question for you to prepare for chat. You need to read this question and post your answer before chat starts for this session.
- Mastery Exercise: The Moodle Mastery exercise for the chapter will contain sections related to our chat topic. Try to complete these before the chat starts, so that you can ask questions.
- No quiz yet: the Chapter Quiz opens when we finish the chapter.
Read through the lab for this week; bring questions to chat on any aspect of the lab, whether you intend not perform it or not. If you decide to perform the lab, be sure to submit your report by the posted due date.
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