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By the end of this section, you will be able to:
  • Define biogeography
  • List and describe abiotic factors that affect the global distribution of plant and animal species
  • Compare the impact of abiotic forces on aquatic and terrestrial environments
  • Summarize the affect of abiotic factors on net primary productivity

Many forces influence the communities of living organisms present in different parts of the biosphere (all of the parts of Earth inhabited by life). The biosphere extends into the atmosphere (several kilometers above Earth) and into the depths of the oceans. Despite its apparent vastness to an individual human, the biosphere occupies only a minute space when compared to the known universe. Many abiotic forces influence where life can exist and the types of organisms found in different parts of the biosphere. The abiotic factors influence the distribution of biomes : large areas of land with similar climate, flora, and fauna.

Biogeography

Biogeography is the study of the geographic distribution of living things and the abiotic factors that affect their distribution. Abiotic factors such as temperature and rainfall vary based mainly on latitude and elevation. As these abiotic factors change, the composition of plant and animal communities also changes. For example, if you were to begin a journey at the equator and walk north, you would notice gradual changes in plant communities. At the beginning of your journey, you would see tropical wet forests with broad-leaved evergreen trees, which are characteristic of plant communities found near the equator. As you continued to travel north, you would see these broad-leaved evergreen plants eventually give rise to seasonally dry forests with scattered trees. You would also begin to notice changes in temperature and moisture. At about 30 degrees north, these forests would give way to deserts, which are characterized by low precipitation.

Moving farther north, you would see that deserts are replaced by grasslands or prairies. Eventually, grasslands are replaced by deciduous temperate forests. These deciduous forests give way to the boreal forests found in the subarctic, the area south of the Arctic Circle. Finally, you would reach the Arctic tundra, which is found at the most northern latitudes. This trek north reveals gradual changes in both climate and the types of organisms that have adapted to environmental factors associated with ecosystems found at different latitudes. However, different ecosystems exist at the same latitude due in part to abiotic factors such as jet streams, the Gulf Stream, and ocean currents. If you were to hike up a mountain, the changes you would see in the vegetation would parallel those as you move to higher latitudes.

Ecologists who study biogeography examine patterns of species distribution. No species exists everywhere; for example, the Venus flytrap is endemic to a small area in North and South Carolina. An endemic    species is one which is naturally found only in a specific geographic area that is usually restricted in size. Other species are generalists: species which live in a wide variety of geographic areas; the raccoon, for example, is native to most of North and Central America.

Questions & Answers

What is Monomer of protein?
Dimpho Reply
What's nutrition and types of nutrition
Jessica Reply
Why is cheetah d fastest animal
Jessica Reply
because they are capable of reaching speeds of up to 70mph
Abu
Thanks
Jessica
what is a cell
Reuben Reply
what is an enzymes
Reuben
a cell is a biological catalyst that speeds up the rate of a chemical reaction without itself been changed
Israel
a cell is smallest unit of life
Francis
an Enzyme helps speed up a chemical reaction
Francis
what is deamination
Mutebi Reply
Is the removal of amino radical from amino acid or any other amino compound.
Esnart
what is metabolism
Allen Reply
metabolism is the the combination of all the reaction that occur within your body
xjuicy_editzz
These reaction can be either anabolic (which is the building up of molecules) or can be catabolism (breaking of molecules) but these processes occur simultaneously to maintain homeostasis(internal body environment) within the body.
xjuicy_editzz
hope that helps :D !!
xjuicy_editzz
list 20 element in their order
Dor Reply
hydrogen helium lithium beryllium boron carbon nitrogen oxygen fluorine neon sodium Magnesium aluminium silicon phosphorus sulfur chlorine Aaron potassium calcium -Also if anyone is having trouble remembering the elements I recommend watching "The Periodic Table of elements song" :)
xjuicy_editzz
anabolic, Because ATP is needed
Avuyileji Reply
?
xjuicy_editzz
definition of biology
LENARD Reply
the branch of science that deals with the study of plants and animals
Emmanuel
alkaloids are excretory product use for
Kekere Reply
What is venation
Mohamed Reply
what is evolution
Anthony Reply
why are you insulting us my niggar?
Emmanuelfray Reply
what is deglutition
Nalumansi Reply
what is biology
Sierrah Reply
biology is a type of science that studies living things
xjuicy_editzz

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Source:  OpenStax, Biology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 29, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11448/1.10
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