The Health of the Biosphere (202-0-01)
Joseph S Walsh
Hogan Hall, Room 6-110A
Technological Institute L251: Tues, Thurs 12:30PM - 1:50PM
Overview of class
This course studies the growth of populations and their interactions in ecological communities. Topics include: the ecological niche; projections of population growth, including the history of human growth, harvesting populations, and population viability analysis of endangered species; interactions among species, including competition, predation, and disease transmission; measuring the diversity of ecological communities; the effects of diversity on energy flow. More advanced topics will also be addressed, including the biodiversity-stability relationship, the economic values of biodiversity and ecosystem function, and the biology and management of metapopulations in fragmented habitats.
Recommended Background: MATH 220
REGULAR REGISTRATION: As a 200-level course and a gateway to the ENVR_SCI major, the majority of seats are reserved for sophomores. If you are unable to enroll, please sign up on our departmental waitlist for consideration: https://bit.ly/ENVR_SCI-202-Winter-2023 We do not use the Caesar waitlist for this course.
Introduce the concept of the ecological niche, and the limits on the distribution and abundance of populations. Develop the basic mathematical tools for understanding models of population growth, sustainable harvest, extinction of fragmented populations, and spread of diseases. Explore the concept of the biological community and the role of biological diversity in healthy ecosystem functioning.
Two lectures per week.
Two midterms @ 20% + 25% = 45%; four problem sets @ 10% each = 40%; in-class activities = 15%
Class Materials (Required)
Ecology / Michael Cain, William Bowman, Sally Hacker / ISBN 9781605353050 / 2013 / 3rd ed / Sinauer Assoc. / All editions of the textbook are equally acceptable. ($98 new, $88 new rental, $20 used rental)
Natural Sciences Distro Area
See Class Details for Important Registration Info
Enrollment Requirements: Pre-requisite: Students must have completed at least three units of Math, Chemistry, Physics, Statistics, Environmental Sciences, Earth & Planetary Sciences, or Biological Sciences.