Topics in BiologyTropical savanna explained with its characteristics Ecological pyramid explained with its importance and limitations Hindbrain: Medulla Oblongata and its features Food web explained with examples Biology Scheme of Work, SS1, First Term Biology Scheme of Work, SS1, 2nd Term Biology Scheme of Work, SS1, 3rd Term Male accessory sex organs: Seminal vesicles and bulbourethral glands Scrotum and its contents: Testicles Brain: Introduction to the human brain Forebrain: Lobes of the cerebrum and their functions Cerebellum: Parts and functions of the cerebellum Midbrain: Division and functions of the midbrain Negative feedback mechanism in homeostasis Arterial disorders explained with their causes Types of desert and their characteristics Characteristics of tropical rainforest Swamp forest: What are swamp forests? Characteristics of swamp forests Savanna biome: Concept of the savanna
Academic Questions in Biology
In a food chain, the primary consumers are classified under trophic level _____.
Cold blooded animals are referred to as _____.
F. None of the above
All reptiles are vertebrates.
_____ cells are responsible for the formation of osteoblasts.
_____ is a bone that constitute the axial skeleton.
Which of the following is false concerning cartilages and bones?
A diagram showing the movement of energy through a food chain is called a _____.
Which of the following is NOT a part of the wrist bones (or carpal bones)?
A living organism is defined as anything that has life. We know for sure that plants and animals are living organisms because they fulfill all the basic characteristics necessary for life.
Below are the basic characteristics of life:
It is noteworthy to state that plants and animals are not the only forms of living organisms. In this regard, we have other forms of living organisms that aren't plants nor animals.
There are millions of organisms that are neither plants nor animals. Generally, the classification of organisms into kingdoms have given more insight about life. Meanwhile, recall that biology is the study of life.
Anything that has life must belong to a kingdom.
As stated earlier, living organisms are classified into kingdoms. As an instance, human beings, insects and birds are all classified under kingdom 'animalia'. Also, trees, shrubs and grasses are generally classified into the kingdom 'plantae'.
Below are the respective kingdoms with regards to the classification of living organisms:
1. Archae: They include those bacteria that survive under extreme environmental conditions like the hot acidic springs and salt lakes. The kingdom 'archae' may also also be referred to as archaebacteria.
2. Monera: The organisms found here are called monerans. They include bacteria and blue-green algae.
3. Protista: The organisms found here are called protists. Protists are the focus of this article.
4. Fungi: Organisms belonging to this kingdom are generally called fungi. Mushrooms and yeasts are examples of fungi.
5. Plantae: The organisms found here are called plants. All plants belong to this kingdom.
Please read on the differences between plants and crops here.
6. Animalia: All animals belong to this kingdom. Ants, hydra, cats, fishes, birds, reptiles and humans belong to kingdom animalia.
Please read on reptiles and their characteristics here.
The classification above was developed by a Swedish botanist named Carolus Linnaeus (1701 - 1778). This is the modern method of classification; and it's termed 'taxonomy' or 'systematics'.
Protists are neither plants nor animals nor fungi nor bacteria; they are simply 'protists'.
In simple terms, an organism belonging to kingdom protista is referred to as a protist; just as those belonging to kingdom plantae are called plants.
All protists are eukaryotic organisms. Being eukaryotic imply that their cell structure has a nucleus bordered by a membrane. They also have organelles in their cytoplasm.
Generally, protists live in an aquatic or fluidly or moist habitat.
All protists do not share similar characteristics. This is because some have got 'animal-like' characteristics while others are 'plant-like'. An animal-like protist means that such protists have got some features found in animals. For instance, their cells have a cell membrane. Meanwhile, recall that all animals have a cell membrane as the outermost layer of their cell.
When a protist is plant-like, it means that they have cell wall and chloroplast respectively. In this regard, such plant-like protists can manufacture their own food. Also, recall that all plants have chloroplasts and a cellulose cell wall.
Understand that a few protists can be fungi-like since they may reproduce by forming spores.
Generally, all protists are commonly grouped together because they do not specifically fit into any other kingdom.
Examples of protists includes: amoeba, paramecium, euglena, chlamydomonas, plasmodium, kelp, slime molds and water molds.
Some protists are single celled (unicellular) while others are colonial (form colonies) and multicellular (made up of more than one cell).
In terms of size, a few protist can be very large. An example of a large protist is the kelp. However, most protists are microscopic in size. Examples are amoeba,. paramecium and euglena.
A protist can can be free-living or parasitic. An example of a free-living protist is the amoeba. Conversely, a plasmodium is a parasitic protist. Also, understand that a few protist may be saprophytic.
Below is a diagram showing various Protists.
This is the ability of an organism to move from one point to another.
Although some protists are non-motile (cannot move from one point to another), others exhibit locomotion via a variety of locomotary organelles.
Below are some protists and their locomotary organelles:
Examples of non-motile protist are plasmodium and Toxoplasma gondii.
Note: Slime mold and water mold are protists that exhibit little movement.
Certain protists are photosynthetic autotrophs (that is, they can manufacture food by utilizing the energy from sunlight). Examples are euglena and algae.
Conversely, some are heterotrophic (that is, they cannot produce their own food and hence rely on readymade food). Examples are amoeba and paramecium.
The protist plasmodium is the causative agent for malaria. (It is sometimes referred to as the malaria parasite). It undergoes a parasitic kind of nutrition; which is a type of heterotrophic mode of nutrition.
Note: Some protists are both autotrophic and heterotrophic. Euglena is an example.
Most are unicellular. Amoeba, paramecium, euglena, chlamydomonas and plasmodium are examples of unicelluler protist.
A few protists are multicellular; for example, kelp, slime molds and algae.
Reproduction is typically asexual but sometimes, sexual reproduction does occur.
Binary fission is a form of asexual reproduction that occurs in Amoeba.
Plasmodium falciparum may undergo sexual reproduction at some stages in it's life cycle.
They generally live in an aquatic habitat. This is usually a fresh water in most cases. Fresh water habitat include ponds, lakes, rivers and streams.
Note: Seas and Oceans are salt water. Any water body that isn't a sea or an ocean is much likely to be a fresh water.
Being eukaryotic implies that their cell structure have a well defined nucleus and cell membrane.
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Amazing facts in Biology
Cockroach is the fastest land animal on six legs
Like humans, all apes laugh when tickled
An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain
The upper front teeth are missing in giraffes. Meanwhile, like an adult human, a fully grown giraffe has 32 teeth but most are positioned at the back of their mouth
Slugs have four noses
Most insects hatch from egg but aphids give birth to their young alive
Bats aren't birds, rather, they are mammals. Infact, they are the second largest order of mammals after rodents. We have over 1,400 species of bat. Globally, they make up about 20% of all classified mammal species
99% of a panda's diet is bamboo. They may eat fish or other small animals occasionally
When attacked by insects, lima beans plant will often command parasitic wasps to their defence.
When the leaves of the lima bean's leaves are eaten by insects, the plant gives off a substance that signals parasitic wasps to swam in, destroying its enemies (the leaf-eating insects) in the process
Frogs drink water through their skin
NOTABLE POINTS IN Biology
For a thing to be considered living, it must possess all the basic characteristics of life. These include:
Irritability or Sensitivity
During strenuous exercises like sprinting or running, your body may actually work in the shortage of oxygen. During this time, your body owes oxygen (called oxygen debt) and it must be replenished or repayed after the exercise is stopped. This is why you breathe excess of oxygen after you stopped the exercise.
This is the concept of anaerobic respiration
A food chain is a diagram that shows the relationship between plants and animals within a habitat on the basis of how they rely on each other for food.
Note: Habitat is a place where an organism live. It is of three types:
The term Biology originated from two Greek words. They are:
Bios: means life.
Logos: means knowledge or to study.
Biology can therefore be defined as the study of life
Anything that has life is generally considered as a living organism (or organism). All living organisms must be able to carry the following activities:
Irritability or Sensitivity
The above listed points are often regarded as the basic characteristics of life. You can memorize them using the acronym -> MR. NIGER DAC.
The gas used in the manufacture of food by plants is Carbon dioxide or Carbon(IV)oxide or CO2
Plants manufacture food through a process called photosynthesis.
It is noteworthy to state that plants are the only orgnisms that take away CO2 from the atmosphere