These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…
ecosystem : the complex of a community of organisms and its environment functioning as an ecological unit — Webster
Ecosystem is a community made up of living organisms and nonliving components such as air, water, and mineral soil. Ecosystems can be studied in two different ways. They can be thought of as interdependent collections of plants and animals, or as structured systems and communities governed by general rules. The living (biotic) and non-living (abiotic) components interact through nutrient cycles and energy flows. Ecosystems include interactions among organisms, and between organisms and their environment. Ecosystems can be of any size but each ecosystem has a specific, limited space. — Wikipedia
Biome is a community of plants and animals that have common characteristics for the environment they exist in. They can be found over a range of continents. Biomes are distinct biological communities that have formed in response to a shared physical climate. “Biome” is a broader term than “habitat”; any biome can comprise a variety of habitats.
A ‘biota’ is the total collection of organisms of a geographic region or a time period, from local geographic scales and instantaneous temporal scales all the way up to whole-planet and whole-timescale spatiotemporal scales. The biotas of the Earth make up the biosphere. — Wikipedia
Ecology is the branch of biology which studies the interactions among organisms and their environment. Objects of study include interactions of organisms with each other and with abiotic components of their environment. Topics of interest include the biodiversity, distribution, biomass, and populations of organisms, as well as cooperation and competition within and between species. Ecosystems are dynamically interacting systems of organisms, the communities they make up, and the non-living components of their environment. Ecosystem processes, such as primary production, pedogenesis, nutrient cycling, and niche construction, regulate the flux of energy and matter through an environment. These processes are sustained by organisms with specific life history traits. — Wikipedia
Ecosystems News -- ScienceDaily Ecology news. Learn about ecosystems at risk. Read current events articles on fragile ecosystems and what can be done to protect them.
Availability of nitrogen to plants is declining...
on October 22, 2018 at 5:57 pm
Researchers have found that global changes, including warming temperatures and increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, are causing a decrease in the availability of a key nutrient for terrestrial plants. This could affect the ability of forests to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reduce the amount of nutrients available for the creatures that eat them. […]
Fish give up the fight after coral bleaching
on October 22, 2018 at 4:28 pm
Researchers found that when water temperatures heat up for corals, fish 'tempers' cool down, providing the first clear evidence of coral bleaching serving as a trigger for rapid change in reef fish behavior. Researchers show how the iconic butterflyfish, considered to be sensitive indicators of reef health, can offer an early warning sign that reef fish populations are in trouble. […]
Rising temperatures and human activity are...
on October 22, 2018 at 12:58 pm
Researchers have demonstrated for the first time that runoff extremes have been dramatically increasing in response to climate and human-induced changes. Their findings show a large increase in both precipitation and runoff extremes driven by both human activity and climate change. They also found that storm runoff has a stronger response than precipitation to human-induced changes (climate change, land-use land-cover changes, etc). […]
Genetic behavior reveals cause of death in...
on October 19, 2018 at 2:06 pm
Scientists studying a valuable, but vulnerable, species of poplar have identified the genetic mechanism responsible for the species' inability to resist a pervasive and deadly disease. Their finding could lead to more successful hybrid poplar varieties for increased biofuels and forestry production and protect native trees against infection. […]
Biodiversity can also destabilize ecosystems
on October 18, 2018 at 12:26 pm
According to the prevailing opinion, species-rich ecosystems are more stable against environmental disruptions such as drought, hot spells or pesticides. The situation is not as simple as it seems, however, as ecologists have now discovered. Under certain environmental conditions, increased biodiversity can also lead to an ecosystem becoming more unstable. […]
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Research finds NJ numerical nutrient criterion...
on October 22, 2018 at 4:49 pm
A new way of measuring the relative habitability of freshwater environments for fish and aquatic insects suggests that New Jersey's water monitoring and treatment standards could use a boost. […]
Mathematics as weapon against desertification
on October 22, 2018 at 2:10 pm
Ph.D. student Robbin Bastiaansen applies mathematics to get insight in practical problems. By comparing mathematical models with developments in existing ecosystems, he hopes to demystify the process of desertification. His research has been published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), a rare achievement for a mathematician. […]
Rising temperatures and human activity are...
on October 22, 2018 at 9:59 am
Hurricanes Florence and Michael in the U.S. and Super Typhoon Mangkhut in the Philippines have shown the widespread and harmful impact of weather extremes on both ecosystems and built communities, with flash floods causing more deaths, as well as property and agriculture losses than from any other severe weather-related hazards. These losses have been increasing over the past 50 years and have exceeded $30 billion per year in the past decade. Globally, almost one billion people now live in […]
Why a wetland might not be wet
on October 18, 2018 at 1:30 pm
Lake Eyre is one of Australia's most iconic wetlands, home to thousands of waterbirds that migrate from all over Australia and the world. But it is often dry for decades between floods. […]
Sex or food? Decision-making in single-cell...
on October 17, 2018 at 1:20 pm
Unicellular diatoms are able to adapt their behavior to different external stimuli based on an evaluation of their own needs. This was discovered by scientists of the Friedrich Schiller University and the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany, together with partners from Belgium. The algae depend on nutrients in order to reproduce. However, they also need reproductive partners, which they find by following pheromone traces. In experiments, Seminavis robusta diatoms directed […]