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Monday, December 26, 2016

ENERGY FLOW THROUGH ECOSYSTEMS

Solar energy powers all life processes on Earth

Solar energy captured during the light-dependent reaction of photosynthesis is the ingredient that powers most ecosystem processes.  This energy is passed from trophic level to trophic level, fueling the emergence of virtually all life forms on Earth.  Energy is the theme of the next video in the AP Environmental Science topic of The Living World.  It is available through the publishing partner of Bird Conservation Research, Inc.: Arts and Academic Publishing.

The video begins by exploring climatic relationships among biomes through climatographs.  It then moves to a discussion of the light and dark reactions of photosynthesis and how these processes are used in producing living biomass.  It next considers the laws of thermodynamics and how these constrain energy flow through ecosystems.  Concepts relating to productivity are then reviewed, as is the transfer of energy through trophic levels.  The video concludes by following energy from primary producers to consumers to decomposers.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

WETLAND BIOMES

The rocky intertidal zone of the Rhode Island coast is one of the topics considered in the next video in the Living World series.

In addition to terrestrial biomes, aquatic biomes are also recognized.   Those examined in the next video in the Living World lecture series of Arts and Academic Publishing include estuaries and their vegetated wetlands, including salt marshes and mangrove swamps.  Wildlife of estuarine wetlands are distinctive, and include species like the Seaside and Sharp-tailed sparrows.  Adaptations of these species for the stressful physical conditions of the estuary are considered.

Marine ecosystems are explored next, and investigate the habitats that make them up.  These include the intertidal realm, benthic environments and pelagic environments.  These environments are further subdivided into zones, and the characteristics of each are considered.  All these topics related to the National AP Environmental Science curriculum.