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ancient and coppiced woodland

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Biology coursework: Species diversity and species abundance in ancient and coppiced woodlands: Skill I, A and E Analysis: Species diversity is a measure of different species of vegetation found in one area. The amount of different species depends on various factors. One of the factors affecting species abundance is the carrying capacity of the environment. The carrying capacity is defined as the maximum size of a population that can be supported sustainably in a habitat. The carrying capacity is controlled by several different factors including abiotic combined with biotic factors. Abiotic factors include light intensity, temperature, pH, moisture content of soil, etc. Biotic factors include predation, competition and density. Competition includes intra- and interspecific competition within an ecosystem. Intraspecific competition is competition within a species and interspecific competition is defined as competition between different species. (2, 3, 4) The average light intensity is 1411 lux in coppiced woodland and 674 lux in ancient woodland. This shows that the light intensity was much higher in coppiced woodland. A higher light intensity results in a higher rate of photosynthesis. The coppiced woodland was much lighter and with a greater variety of species. In ancient woodland we found more trees which covered the wood ground with shadow so that the ground species could not get as much light as in coppiced woodland where it was lighter. Photosynthesis is the fixation of carbon dioxide and its subsequent reduction to carbohydrate, using hydrogen from water. Plants require light energy to carry out photosynthesis and to produce their own food. In photosynthesis the light energy absorbed by the photosynthetic pigments (chlorophylls and carotenoids) is converted to chemical energy. Photosynthesis consists of two stages. The first needs light energy and consists of the light-dependent reaction. In this stage the energy from the sunlight is transferred into the production of ATP and the coenzyme NADP is reduced to NADPH. These two products are subsequently used in the light-independent reactions to reduce carbon dioxide to carbohydrate. ...read more.


Enzyme activity is further affected by the pH of the soil. As each enzyme has its optimum temperature, each enzyme has its optimum pH where its activity is at a maximum. Most enzymes have their greatest activity at fairly neutral conditions. pH is a measure of the concentration of hydrogen ions in a solution. The lower the pH, the higher the hydrogen ion concentration. Hydrogen ions can interact with the R groups of amino acids, affecting the way in which they bond with each other and therefore affect their 3D arrangement. A pH which is very different from the optimum pH can cause denaturation of an enzyme. The mean soil pH is for both types of woodland the same; this could assume that it is the optimum pH for enzyme reactions to occur. (1) The bar chart showing the average air temperature in coppiced and ancient woodland shows clearly that the average air temperature in coppiced woodland is greater than in ancient. In ancient woodland it is an average temperature of 20.1�C and in coppiced woodland it is 27.4�C- a difference of 7.3�C between both woodlands. The bar chart demonstrating the % of humus in the soil shows that in ancient woodland there is a higher % of humus in the soil of 15.56%, whereas in coppiced woodland the % of humus in the soil is 13.72%- a relatively small difference of 1.86% between ancient and coppiced woodland. The following bar chart outlining the average pH demonstrates that both woodlands have the same average pH of 5.7. The bar chart illustrating the average light intensity in coppiced and ancient woodland shows that in coppiced woodland the average light intensity is 1411 lux more than twice the amount found in ancient woodland where the average light intensity is 674 lux. The bar chart screening the average relative humidity shows that the ancient woodland has a higher mean relative humidity of 60.3%, whereas in coppiced woodland the mean relative humidity counts for 46.7%. ...read more.


to have a look as well Ensure you read off at eye level Trampling and grazing by animals Not counting the exact number of plant species as they were unrecognisable which would have resulted in reduced species diversity 5 Carry out investigation over longer period of time and look carefully Higher species diversity and more accurate data obtained in the area When taking soil samples waiting one or more weeks until using them. Water from the soil samples could have evaporated reducing the amount of moisture content causing inaccuracy in data obtained 3 Use soil samples on the same day or on the after taking the soil samples from the woodlands More accurate data obtained and higher moisture content in soil Collecting data at one time of the year only( we carried out investigation in the summer only) Reduced species diversity 1 Collect data at different times of the year to ensure that all species are included which grow throughout the year Higher species diversity and more accurate results Not include the environment The acid rain could infiltrate into the soil and an increase of iron and aluminium may allow the pH to decrease 2 We could have measured the concentrations of SO2 and CO2 around each of the types of woodlands and correlated with the pH of the soil in each type of woodland More accurate pH Using universal indicator when determining the pH in soil samples. Universal indicator is subjective. Incorrect pH results reducing the accuracy of the results 4 Use of different indicator with precise colour change or ask lap partner for their opinion in pH More accurate pH and results on the whole Bibliography: 1) Advanced Sciences : Biology 1, page 42-49, page 92-100, page 135-139 2) Advanced Sciences : Biology 2, page 28-44 and page 17-24 3) Advanced Biology by Michael Kent 4) Class notes 5) A2 level Biology by Phil Bradfield, John Dodds, Judy Dodds and Norma Taylor, pages 31-45 6) Internet: www.wikipedia.co.uk 7) http://www.unc.edu/~farkouh/usefull/chi.html: Internet 8) http://www.regulus.eu/Merici-pristroje. ...read more.

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