General Ecology (Biology 305) Course Schedule:



Room #:          TNR 170

Day/Time:       12:00-12:50 M W F (Monday/Wednesday/Friday)



1.      Ecology: by Cain, Bowman and Hacker (rental)


Week-by-week **tentative** schedule of topics we will cover:


Week 1:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 1 and 6 first part)

Wednesday: Introduction to the course and the topic. What is Science?  What is Ecology?   

Friday: Course expectations and introduction continued: What do Ecologists study?  Why is it important?


Week 2:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 2 and 7)

Monday:  Setting the stage: why does the environment vary in space and time, and why does it matter?

Wednesday: Setting the stage part II: Natural Selection—a review

            Friday: Individual variation and adaptations to a varying environment


Week 3:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 7-9)

Monday: Life history strategies—an introduction  

Wednesday: Population ecology—how do ecologists study populations?

            Friday: Exponential growth


Week 4:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 10)

Monday: Effects of Stochasticity

Wednesday: Limits to population growth

            Friday: Logistic growth


Week 5:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapter 10)

Monday: Life tables and age structure

Wednesday: Size-structured populations

            Friday: Midterm Exam I 


Week 6:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapter 10; TBA)

Monday: Life Histories and Evolutionarily Stable Strategies

Wednesday: Small populations and genetics

Friday: Metapopulation Biology


Week 7:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 10; 12-13)

Monday: Metapopulation Biology

Wednesday: Metapopulations and Source-sink dynamics

            Friday: Exploitation: predation and parasitism


Week 8:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 12 and 13; Krebs 2003)

Monday:  Adaptations to avoid exploitation I

Wednesday: Adaptations to avoid exploitation II; Predator Prey cycles

Friday: Lotka-Volterra predator-prey models


Week 9:  Spring Break!!


Week 10:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 12 and 13; Krebs 2003)

Monday:  Lotka-Volterra predator-prey models continued 

Wednesday: Pathogens I

            Friday: Pathogens II


Week 11:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapter 11)

Monday:  Competition I

Wednesday: Midterm Exam II

            Friday: Lotka-Volterra competition models


Week 12:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapter 11)

Monday: Competition II

Wednesday: Competition III

            Friday: Competition IV


Week 13:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapter 14)

Monday: Coral Case Study

Wednesday: Mutualisms I

            Friday: Mutualisms II


Week 14:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 8, 22-23)

Monday: Mutualisms III

Wednesday: Indirect interactions I

            Friday: Indirect interactions II


Week 15:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 15-17)

Monday: Coral discussions and Community ecology I

Wednesday: Ecological succession

            Friday: Biogeography: Island biogeography and niche theory


Week 16:

                                                            Reading for the week: (Chapters 20, 21 24)

Monday: Niche theory and neutral theory; Trophic cascades and energy flow

Wednesday: The Carbon cycle and Global climate change I

            Friday: Global climate change II: effects on organisms and communities


Week 17: Final exams


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