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Ecosystems Questions


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Define the term ‘abiotic’.
Abiotic refers to the non-living component of an ecosystem
Explain how changes in altitude affect the distribution of ecosystems
As you go higher the temperature reduces and there can be an increase in rainfall. This will provide different growing conditions for different ecosystems. You may find tropical ecosystems at the lower altitudes and tundra at the highest due to colder conditions and steeper, thinner soils.
Explain one way in which plants have adapted to living in a tropical rainforest.
Buttress roots to stabilise the trees as they increase in height .
Explain why there are differences between nutrient cycles for tropical and deciduous forests.
Biomass store – bigger in TRF as more nutrients are held in the vegetation because of the high biodiversity in the system so there are more available nutrients , as there is more photosynthesis, meaning a greater amount of productivity .
State two characteristics of a tundra ecosystem.
The temperatures stay below 0°C most of the year, Bare landscape/treeless
Explain one cause of deforestation in deciduous woodlands.
The wood is used as timber for buildings as rates of urbanisation increase
Explain two ways in which plants have adapted to living in deciduous woodlands.
Before the leaves die, some of the food material they contain is drawn back into the twigs and branches where it is stored which will be used to grow new leaves again in the following spring, Leaves are broad/green which allows them to capture sunlight/photosynthesis in summer.
Explain one way climate influences the distribution of deserts.
The locations of deserts are associated with high pressure which is linked with sinking air which means that there is very little rainfall.
Explain one reason why Tropical rainforests have a very high biodiversity.
The high rainfall/ temperature produces good conditions for growth
Explain two causes of deforestation in tropical rainforests.
Trees are cleared to grow crops/ cattle ranching as population increases/ to export to other countries. Trees are cut down for fuel/ firewood as demand rises due to population growth
Suggest one reason why deforestation rates might be falling in some countries.
The rate of deforestation may have fallen because of increased protection of the forests by the government. This means that clear felling has been banned in some areas and loggers will face significant fines or imprisonment if they do not follow this.
State two characteristics of a desert ecosystem.
Dry all year, hot days, cool nights
State two characteristics of a tropical grassland ecosystem.
Hot all year, seasonal rainfall, some dry months
State two characteristics of a tropical rainforest ecosystem.
Hot all year, rain all year with some months wetter than others
State two characteristics of a deciduous forest ecosystem.
Warm summers but cold winters, rain all year.
State the four main ecosystems found in the UK.
Woodland, heathland, wetlands, moorland
State two plant adaptations in the tropical rainforest
buttress roots for support, drip tip leaves to get rid of water
State two plant adaptations in the deciduous forest
Wide leaves for photosynthesis, drop leaves in winter to protect from cold
State two animal adaptations in the deciduous forest
Some hibernate over winter during cold, some store food during summer for winter months
State two animal adaptations in the tropical rainforest
Birds have strong beaks for getting into nuts and seed, monkeys have strong linbs and tails for climbing trees