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Tropical Rainforest as a Biosystem

Why does life thrive in the tropical rainforest

The tropical rainforest is very rich in water and food thus life thrives. We all know that food and water are the things that animals need the most for their survival. It also has a warm temperature due to the constant energy that the sun provides. The plants need the sunlight for the process of photosynthesis to be completed and use it to derived energy. And the plants serve as the food for some animals and these animals serve as the food to the carnivores.

These are some of the reasons of why does life thrive in tropical rainforest. Explain why most of the food for herbivores grows far above the ground. Plants, the food for herbivores, need the sun for energy. The tall trees and plants that grow high in the forest are the ones that get most of the sunlight for it covers the smaller trees and plants. It’s why most of the food for plant-eating animals grows far above the ground because competition for sunlight favors tall trees and plants that grow high in the forests.

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Explain why removing the capuchin monkeys from the rainforest ecosystem would have a negative impact to other living organisms like squirrel monkeys, insects, raptors and palm plants. The capuchin monkeys have an important role in the rainforest ecosystem and removing them would make a negative impact to other living organisms that benefit from them. Just like the squirrel monkeys, they depend on the capuchin monkeys for food for they get the leftovers of the capuchin monkeys.

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The squirrel monkeys also forage insects and imagine if the capuchin monkeys isn’t there to provide some food for the squirrel monkeys thus making the insect population grow. Raptors mostly prey on the squirrel monkeys and if the squirrel monkeys are not there, the raptors will not have any more food to eat. This are some possibilities that could happen if capuchin monkeys are remove. It will have a chain reaction to the others. 3.1.4. Biologists use food webs to illustrate relationships between producers, consumers and decomposers in an ecosystem.

Where do humans fit in the food web

Humans are allocated as a consumer in the food web. We are said to be an omnivore, an animal that eats plants and animals. We, humans, consume plants, the producers in the food web, and animals that are also consumer of plants. We either consume the producer directly and indirectly for we eat other consumer of plants. Thus making as part of the food web and labeling us as a consumer.

Conservation biologists argue that a few large reserves are effective than numerous small reserves. Why does size matter? Size matters because it determines the different kinds of species that could live in that reserve. It is said to be that in smaller reserve numerous species will live there but only a few kinds because others are more comfortable with larger reserves while in larger reserves there are more different kinds of species that lives there. A study conducted in Illinois showed that two small forest reserves contained a larger number of bird species than one large forest patch, but the large reserve contained a larger number of migratory birds.

How would you explain the geographic distribution of the tropical rainforests around the globe? The tropical rainforests are distributed mostly in the middle part of the earth. The countries between the tropic of cancer and the tropic of Capricorn are the ones where the tropical rainforests are. 9.2. Identify the factors that lead to this geographic distribution and explain how these factors affect/enhance the existence of the tropical rainforests in those regions. The regions that most tropical rainforests are located, is located between the tropic of cancer and tropic of Capricorn. In the tropic of cancer and tropic of Capricorn, this area does not experience seasons because the sun is always high in the sky. This leads us to why most tropical rainforest are located there since the sun is always high on those places; it helps the rainforests to grow more plants.

Is biodiversity affected by these factors? Explain your answer. Yes, biodiversity is affected by these factors since most of the species live in the rainforests and they depend on it. If the rainforest is affected by those factors, then also the biodiversity is also affected because in the rainforests, species have a chain reaction to each other like passing message to different persons.

What is a biodiversity hotspot

A biodiversity hotspot is a biogeographic region that is both a significant reservoir of biodiversity and is threatened with destruction. The term biodiversity hotspot specifically refers to 25 biologically rich areas around the world that have lost at least 70 percent of their original habitat.

How would you explain the commonalities of continents and countries in your result? Explain why most of the tropical rainforests are considered biodiversity hotspots. Tropical rainforests, nowadays, are endangered and already facing some destructions. Also, the species that are living there are slowly decreasing and also becoming endangered. These are some of the reasons why tropical rainforests are considered biodiversity hotspots for rainforests are already losing their original habitat.

Based on the current environmental situation, would the tropical rainforests be affected by global warming and climate change? Explain your answer. Yes, global warming and climate change would affect the tropical rainforests. Because of global warming, some rainforests are being dried and some are being burned due to the extreme heat that is brought by the sun due to global warming.


Cite the advantages and disadvantages of using Google earth as a virtual globe and world satellite map

The advantages of the google earth are it is very helpful for us to know the locations, the exact coordinates of the place and it also helps us to see the world. It is also free and everyone could have it well those who have computers and use this for studies. It is also up to date and it helps everyone so there wouldn’t be a misunderstanding. The disadvantages of google earth are it needed internet access. Another concern is that less developed countries are poorly presented.

Research on the scientific principle behind Google earth as a GIS software ie. how does it work

Google purchases most of the images from their maps from other companies. These images come from satellites and aerial photographs.

Give at least five practical applications of GIS in the field of Ecology and Biodiversity Conservation

Recent developments in remote-sensing technology and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) allow the use of a landscape ecology and spatial analysis approach to the problem of deforestation and biodiversity conservation in the Western Ghats. Another application is Remote sensing, the science of obtaining information via noncontact recording, has swept the fields of ecology, biodiversity and conservation (EBC).

Describe your feelings upon locating and seeing such destructive activities on Google Earth along the Sierra Madre Mountain Range

When I saw the lush full trees, I was in awe with what I’m seeing it’s very beautiful but when I saw that some parts are already gone, it made me feel sad. It is such a sad thing because someone has destroyed something as beautiful as that sierra madre mountain range.

What can you do to slow down if not prevent this environmental destruction to happen? What would be your plan of action

In my own way, I could slow down the environmental destruction to happen by slowly starting with my attitude so I could discipline myself to save papers and reuse other things and recycle things that could be use. I also will join some advocacies that help the environment to be better. I also would like to plant more trees in the cities that are mostly polluted and also try to lessen some things that cause the pollution like cars, factories and etc. Another thing is to reduce waste in our surroundings because it is not healthy for the environment to be surrounded by dirty things.

What factors influence climate in general?

The factors that influence the climate are latitude & longitude, altitude, prevailing winds, distance from oceans, ocean currents, geography, topography.

How does climate affect the nature and location of tropical rainforests?

In the location of the rainforest, plants receive lots of water and are able to grow tall. Many plants are able to survive in this climate leading to many species of plants. The different kinds of species are there due to the climate there and the resources.

How would you explain the high amount of rainfall in this type of ecosystem?

Tropical rain forests’ locations are near the equator which has a lot of water and in that part of region the sun is directly there. It means that there are many water being evaporated there which cause the high amounts of rainfall.

Describe the annual subtle changes taking place among the plant and animal inhabitants of a tropical rainforest.

How have human activities affected the world’s tropical rainforests?

Human activities, nowadays, are not eco-friendly and it affects the rainforests by polluting it and destroying it through logging and other things. Many rainforests are slowly dying due to the effect of the global warming that is brought by these human activities.

What harmful effects might the loss of most of the world’s remaining tropical rainforests have on your lifestyle and that of any child or grandchild that you might have?

I think that it will have a big impact on my life because the tropical rainforests are a home to other species and it would cause a chain reaction to everything that is surrounding it including us, humans. For the future generations, they wouldn’t be able to see the beauty of nature or they might not be a future generation anymore.

What are the two things you could do to help reduce this loss? I could start to practice reusing, reducing and recycling as my daily habit so in some small ways I could help even when I’m at home. I could also join some activities that will help prevent or improve the environment. I could also start movements against the things that destroy the environment.

Explain why there are different classes of animals and plants living in the different layers of the tropical rainforest? Clue: Read about Adaptation, niche and habitat. Different kinds of animals and plants have different ways of living. Some preferred to live in higher grounds while some in lower grounds. Some preferred to be close to the water while some preferred the area that is surrounded by trees. Some plants also preferred to live up high in the ground so they could have more sunlight compared to the ones on the ground. Their way of living is the reason on why there different kinds of animals and plants are living different layers of the tropical rainforest.

Discuss how these organisms interact with one another, an example is mutualism. There are different types of interactions between the animals and plants. The types are Competition, Commensalism, Predation, Parasitism, and Amensalism. In competition, both species are harmed, for example in plants, the trees compete for the sunlight and in animals, the birds fight for food. In Commensalism, one is benefited while the other is not affected, for example an orchid growing in a side of a tree and the tree is not affected by it. In predation, one is benefited while the other is harmed, for example a lion hunting a zebra. In parasitism, it’s the same with the predation but the difference is that here it involves parasites for example a flea on a dog sucking the dog’s blood. Lastly, in amensalism, one harms the other through releasing toxic but does not affect itself, for example black walnut tree (Juglans nigra), which secrete juglone, a chemical that harms or kills some species of neighbouring plants, from its roots.

In what layer of the rainforest would you find most of the decomposers? Explain and discuss their role in this ecosystem. The decomposers are found in the Forest Floor because they are the ones that eat the decaying plants and animals. They are also the one that recycles the forest waste to provide nutrients for plants to use. With these nutrients, the plants grow strong and firm on the ground. This makes the decomposers important in rainforests.

Aside from decomposers, what are the other types of organisms that exist in the tropical rainforest? Explain their role/s. Aside from decomposers, there are also the producers or what we commonly known as plants and there are also the consumer which are the animals. The producers’ role is it is the source of food for the animals that are herbivores. They are also responsible to give of oxygen to the animals for them to live. Without them there wouldn’t be animals and decomposers and there wouldn’t be a rainforest. Rainforests are known to be full of plants so imagine if there aren’t any in it. Would you still consider it as a rainforest? The answer is no. The consumers or animals are the ones who consume the producers which are usually the herbivores and these herbivores are usually eaten by the carnivores. The consumers’ role is it is they are the ones that give the decomposers a purpose. They are usually the ones being decomposed and giving life to plants by giving off nutrients to the soil that is used by the plants to grow.

The sound ecological interactions of these organisms constitute a balance (as in balance of nature). How would this balance be offset or altered? This balance could be offset or altered if one organism is removed or transferred. The interactions of this organism are dependent on one another. It is like cycle that goes on and on that if one is removed, the cycle would be broken that would cause a chain reaction on other organisms. Even though if only one is removed on the picture, there would be a big difference in it.

Discuss exhaustively how plants and animals adapt to their respective niches. Plants and animals adapt to their respective niches through natural selection. An animal will adapt to fill its niche through the process of natural selection. For instance, bees are adapted to eat honey, which is made from nectar harvested from flowers. This adaptation also helps fill a niche in the environment, because bees help pollinate flowers as they move from one plant to the next.

How would you classify the plants and animals in the tropical rainforest? Discuss your answer. I would classify the plants and animals in the tropical rainforest through the way of their living. Plants and animals have different ways of living. Some are amphibians that can live in both land and water. Some lives in the trees while some live in the ground. It’s the same with the plants. By classifying then by their way of living, they’re chances of survival are high since they know what to do.

What is the importance of classifying these organisms. Explain. The Rainforest Structure

When the plants and animals are classified, it is easier to identify them and it helps a lot of scientists to know where they belong. It also helps to know where we could find them in the forests. It is important because when organisms are organized, the rainforest structure are also easily identified because of the animals living there. 1. Enumerate the different tribes of indigenous people that inhabit the tropical rainforest of the Sierra Madre Mountains and describe their way of living, culture and traditions (beliefs), how they practice their faith in the Supreme Being and their daily rituals. The Agtas grow root crops, rice and vegetables in their farms. Hunting, fishing and catching crabs are other means of livelihood for the Agtas. Many Agtas have also engaged into other income generating jobs, such as copra making, charcoal making, and gold panning.The traditional attire of the Agta is the tapis/skirt for females and bahag/breech cloth for males. Their clothing is made from the bark of the Gumihan tree. These days the Agtas have many outside influences on their traditional culture and lifestyle. One example is religion. Although the Spanish brought Catholicism to the Philippines, that conversion was largely restricted to the Malay population that had become the majority inhabitants.

The Spanish had little contact with the indigenous peoples of the Philippines. Still Catholicism has reached many Agtas. Generally, the Bugkalots are of small built, fair to dark skinned, and are known to possess a bad temper. They dwell in elevated huts made of wood planks topped with dried cogon reeds. They are primarily hunters with little knowledge of farming or livestock raising. For this reason, they live a nomadic life, moving from one place to another where their hunting activities can sustain them. Although they live far apart from one another, their linguistic similarities, customs and arts show that they belong to one distinct group. Known for their colorful attire, musical instruments and artifacts which are shown in their blow-up pictures in museums patronized by foreign tourist in eastern and Western Europe. Their popular festive dance is called baleleng. Their more hideous ritual, which rallies all Bugkalots, male and female, is seen in the buayat, which they do not show to the Christians. The Bugkalot themselves attribute sociocultural changes, particularly the ceasing of headhunting, not to the influx of education and development programs sponsored by the government, but to the entry of the Gospel into their lives.

As these once feared headhunters converted to Christianity en masse, it seems that they have also accepted the missionaries’ rhetoric of equating headhunting with savageness, and Christianity with civilization. Gaddang comes from the word ga meaning “heat” and dang meaning “burned”; this likely alludes to the fact that the Gaddang are generally darker of skin than other Cordillera peoples. The Christianized, lowland Gaddang are now almost indistinguishable from the Ilokano and Ibanag peoples of the valley, but the highlanders still maintain a unique culture, including what is perhaps the most opulent attire on the island of Luzon, involving plentiful beads and precious stones. They have a performance to heal a sick person which is the Cañao. They sacrifice a pig. Then everyone gets an equal share of the meat. Then person is then cured of his illness. Peace pacts (pudon) are practiced as are kolak trading partnerships. Religion is based on a dichotomy between earth world and afterworld, although the former is the major concern. Rituals are led by both male and female. The male prestige feast occurs once in a lifetime; wealth must be accumulated beforehand to finance the seven elaborate rituals. 2. How do these people protect the rainforest of the Sierra Madre? How do they adapt and survive in this type of environment?

The indigenous people have been living in the rainforest of the Sierra Madre for a very long time. They know what the rainforest needs and what is in the rainforest. They protect it by driving away the people who intends to hurt it and they also nurture the plants in the area. They also protect it by making people aware of the importance of the rainforest.

The indigenous people survive in this type of environment by using what the rainforest offer them. There are a lot of resources in the rainforest and the indigenous people use the things that are around them. They make use of anything that they have and make the most of it.

What assumptions does this model make about co-dominance as well as the general terrain of the ecosystem? It shows that one of the two plants will only survive. There is no co-habitation between the two plants and the terrain is only supportive on one plant species not both.

Do you find one producer to be dominant? Why might one producer be dominant over another?

Yes, plant A appears to be dominant. One producer might be dominant over another because in this case, plant A have high population at the start and ther terrain might not support plant B which cause its extinction. Scenario 2

Does adding the herbivore establish a more equal field? Is one producer still dominant over the other? Why might one producer be dominant over another?

Yes the addition of an herbivore allows a more equal field. Plant B becomes the dominant plant due to the fact the herbivore is opening up more room and resources (sun, soil, water etc) for plant B to grow. In this instance Plant B was the dominant produce due to the herbivore eating Plant A and keeping its numbers down.

If the simulation included decomposers, how would your current results change?

Decomposers may change the results dependant on which of the produces benefits most from the food it produces. Therefore, whichever plant benefits the most will become the more dominant.

How do producer population numbers with the presence of an herbivore compare to the primary colonizer model?

The producer population is easily comparable due to the number of their populations recorded before and after the introduction of the herbivore. When there are no herbivores plant A is completely dominate allowing none of plant B species to survive. However, when the herbivore is introduced plant B becomes the dominant species after the 100 step mark when the simulator has been reset. When the simulator has not been reset plant B population is still extinct, so even with an herbivore introduced plant B still cannot establish any population. When the ecosystem contains plants only, one species of plant out-competes the other(s) and predominates. This illustrates the “competitive exclusion principle,” which theorizes that no two species can occupy the same niche at the same time in a particular locale if resources are limited (Refer to Unit 4 on Ecological Niches, p.22).

The presence of a consumer is needed to keep that plant in check and allow the other species to survive. The primary colonizers of an ecosystem, the producers composed of lower forms of plants like algae and moss, are also the forerunners of primary succession. As these pioneer plants die and decay, they add organic material to the soil, which, over time, will allow for secondary succession—generally larger and more delicate producers such as trees. 2.4. From what you have learned in the text, how are humans contributing to the creation of a vastly rapid form of succession? In other words, how are we speeding up the effects of the competitive exclusion principle and thereby altering the outcome of that ecosystem’s natural succession? You have now a sense for the interrelationships between the trophic levels, see how big you can make your food web and still have all of the species you add survive through the end of the simulation run. Keeping the ideas of succession and the competitive exclusion principle in mind, think of the many factors that may go into sustaining an ecosystem. 2.5. Is there any way we can all get along and live side by side? How? Scenario 3

Was your prediction correct? How did you arrive at your prediction? What differences were there between your prediction and the simulation?

Yes, my prediction is correct. Arrive at my prediction by

What would happen to this imaginary ecosystem if the producers were to die out?

If the producers were to die, then there wouldn’t be an ecosystem at all. The producers is the main source of all the animals and if this is remove in the picture, then the animals will also be removed since they can’t live without it. 3.3. Did any of the species increase in number? What could account for this increase? Which species decreased in number and what might account for this decrease? 3.4. Which populations would benefit the most from the presence of decomposers?

It would be the producers who will benefit since the decomposers will give off nutrients to the plants and this will lead to their increase in population.

Was your prediction correct? How did you arrive at your prediction? What differences were there between your prediction and the simulation?

No, my prediction wasn’t correct.

Were you able to modify the parameters so that each species survived?

Explain how you decided what changes to make.

Which way does energy flow and how does eating an organism result in energy transfer and nutrient cycling? Ecosystems have an extremely complex web of cause and effect. Changing one connection or altering the population of any species within an ecosystem can have dire, cascading effects on all others within that ecosystem. More information about ecosystems is available in Unit 4, and an exploration of human impacts on ecosystems and biodiversity can be found in Unit 9. Consider the following questions: 4.4. How does a natural ecosystem offer suggestions toward a more economical and eco-friendly human model? 4.5. How do humans affect the greater food web? In this model, how could humans who do not live in the ecosystem still manage to alter the flow of energy within the web? Scenario 5

What happens when Omnivore B preys on Omnivore A?

Is this a more stabilized food web? 5.2. Following Plant A’s extinction, what other species will eventually disappear at approximately 85 days? Why did this happen? 5.3. Predict what would happen if the deer were removed from this food web. How are the producers affected? What other cascades occur? 5.4. In this food web, which species has the highest population number? What happens if it is removed from the food web? 5.5. In this food web, which has the biggest impact on the food web, removal of Herbivore B (the snail) or Herbivore C (the deer)? Does population size or individual size have the greatest impact? Explain your answer.

  1. Why are plants important in the ecosystem? Describe its role. Plants are primary source in the ecosystem. It serves as food to some animals which serve to the top predators and the cycle goes on. If there are no plants then the animals are also gone and so is the ecosystem. The plants are the one who use the sun’s energy and use it for photosynthesis that converts carbon dioxide into organic compounds. It is also the one that gives off oxygen to animals which cause them to live.
  2. How do plants get energy and nourishment from the environment in order to exist? Explain what primary productivity is all about and its relation to biodiversity. In plants, these energy factories are called chloroplasts. They collect energy from the sun and use carbon dioxide and water in the process called photosynthesis to produce sugars. Animals can make use of the sugars provided by the plants. Plants absorb nutrients from the surrounding area. They pull in water through their roots, using nutrients in the soil. They also gain energy from water through the roots, and tiny openings on the leaves. Primary productivity is the rate at which energy is converted by photosynthetic and chemosynthetic autotrophs to organic substances. Biodiversity contains a lot of plants which go through the process of photosynthesis that converts energy to produce sugar. With a lot of plants in the biodiversity, this leads to high primary productivity which leads to the reason why biodiversity is define to have high primary productivity.
  3. How would you explain plant biodiversity from your results? From our results, it shows that there are different kinds of plants in a small area. It shows that even though it is just in a small area, there are different kinds of plants that some are not known by all. I would say that plant biodiversity is high.
  4. Differentiate species richness from species evenness. Species richness is related to species diversity. It refers to the number of different species present in an environment while species evenness refers to how close in numbers each species in an environment are. 5. How would you explain the diversity of plant species in an ecosystem like the tropical rainforest? The tropical rainforest has a temperature that satisfies plant and in the rainforests, there are a lot of rains which use the plants as their energy. It also has a soil that is full of nutrients which makes the plant stronger have more nutrients. These things are the cause of the diversity of plant species in the tropical rainforests.
  5. How are plants related to other species like insects and other animals in an ecosystem? Plants have a big role in insects and animals. It serves as food for them and to some it serves as a shelter. The plants also are the one who gives off oxygen to insects and animals which cause them to live. In a food web, the plant is the starting point of everything. It is the one that connects them all that if the plants are removed everything will fall apart.
  6. Trees inhabit the tropical rainforest; describe the role of trees in that ecosystem. The trees in an ecosystem serve as a lot of things. One role of trees is food production. They give off food to the animals living there and to some they are food. Another role is that it serves as a shelter to some animals like squirrels and chipmunks. They also absorb water from rains which stops soil erosion. With the water they absorb, they also release it back to the air. Another role is that they give off oxygen for the animals to breathe. These are some roles of trees in the ecosystem which shows that trees have a big role on the ecosystem.
  7. What are some of the ways in which man is destroying the tropical rainforest? What could be the reasons for such act/s? Humans destroyed the tropical rainforest by chopping down trees that cause a chain reaction in the ecosystem. Humans also chop down a group of trees to build a community which cause a lot of animals to be homeless or relocated to other places. Man also creates pollution that affects the nearby rainforests in the town. Humans do these things so they can satisfy their wants and needs in life. Humans use these trees to build their houses, to make tables and chairs and other things.
  8. What is an introduced species? Explain why it is considered a threat to biodiversity? Give at least 5 examples of this kind of species in our country An introduced species (also known as an exotic species) is an organism that is not native to the place or area where it is considered introduced and instead has been accidentally or deliberately transported to the new location by human activity. An invasive species is one that lessens that diversity by throwing off the natural balance. an invasive species, by definition, is one that damages existing life forms, putting the entire ecosystem at risk. It lessens biodiversity by taking over other, less hardy life forms.

Cite this page

Tropical Rainforest as a Biosystem. (2016, May 15). Retrieved from

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