The Open Door Web Site
Ecology : Introduction
Populations and Sampling
What is a population?
Definition: A group of organism of the same species which live in the same habitat at the same time where they can freely interbreed.
Describing a population
The sigmoid or S-shaped population growth curve
Phase 1: Log or exponential phase. Unlimited population growth. Abundant food, no disease, no predators etc.
Phase 2: Decline or transitional phase. Limiting factors slowing population growth.
Phase 3: Plateau or stationary phase. No growth. The limiting factors balance the population's capacity to increase. The population reaches the Carrying Capacity (K) of the environment. Added limiting factors will lower K. Removing a limiting factor will raise K.
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