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Living organisms are constantly interacting with one another and their external environments. Ecology is the study of these multidimensional interactions of living organisms with living and non-living resources to create unique habitats and communities of living things across the world.
There are different types of associations among living organism as they interact with one another. Some are advantageous to both organisms, harmful to either of the organisms while others have neither benefit nor adverse effects.
Microorganisms belong to an interesting class of living things. They are everywhere and invisible to the eyes. You need a magnifying lens or microscope to see them.
Vectors and pathogens cause diseases. Their activities should be controlled to avoid the spread of infectious diseases. The use of antiseptics, antibiotics, high temperature and dehydration are some of the ways these harmful organisms can be controlled
The cell is the basic structural and functional unit of life. Organisms are composed of cells at unicellular and multicellular levels. Major function of cells includes the transport of materials within and outside the cell.
Plants and animals need essential nutritional elements in the right proportions for growth and reproduction. Some nutrients are major or minor while others are needed in large or small quantities. These nutrients ensure that there is generation of energy for all cellular activities.
Gaseous exchange can occur in animals and plants through body coverings or specialized respiratory or gas exchange structures. Gaseous exchange can happen between organisms and their external environments.
Activities of the living entities in ecosystems make them functional. Biotic components of an ecosystem are majorly autotrophs (green plants) and heterotrophs (animals).
Habitats refer to places where organisms live. It can be aquatic or terrestrial. Terrestrial habitats are those found on land, like forests, grasslands, deserts, shorelines and wetlands.
Various activities of organisms like population explosion, availability and shortage of food, and overcrowding result in shifts in the ecosystem. These shifts further result in different kinds of succession.
Living organisms have the ability to respond to various stimuli. There is a nervous coordination that helps in the transfer of messages around the body of an organism by means of various nerves.
Sensory receptors and organs are specialized organs like the eye, nose, ear, skin and mouth. They help to convey raw sensory stimuli and translate them into signals the nervous system can use.
All living things undergo one form of change or another throughout their life time. Metamorphosis is a biological process of transformation by which an organism develops from birth into an adult by significant changes in the organism’s body structure through cell growth and differentiation.
Variation refers to differences that occur within the individuals of a species; usually due to the effects of inherited characteristics and the environment.
Genetics is a branch of biology concerned with the study of genes, genetic variation and heredity in organisms. Heredity is the transfer of character from parents to offspring through gametes.