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)?
Biology is the study of life. If an organism is to be considered as living, it must possess certain basic life characteristics; for instance, a stone cannot move and this makes it non-living.
The point in the above instance is; every living organism must be able to move. As a result, movement is regarded as one of the basic characteristics of life.
Below are the basic characteristics of living organisms:
1. Movement: All living organisms move. Movement should not be confused with locomotion.
Locomotion requires a change of position while movement does not necessarily require a change of position. For instance, plants undergo bending movements while remaining on the same point (or position). Animals on the other hand can move from one point to another (locomotion).
When a plant is put in a dark room, it will attempt to move or bend towards light. This is known as positive phototaxis.
2. Respiration: Respiration is quite different from breathing. For respiration to occur, the process of breathing must first take place.
Breathing implies the exchange of gases. For instance, organisms breathe in oxygen (inhalation) and breathe out carbon(IV)oxide (exhalation). Conversely, respiration focuses on the use of the inhaled oxygen.
Inhaled oxygen is used for oxidizing or breaking down digested food (usually glucose) to produce energy (ATP); and this is what aerobic respiration entails.
Glucose is a simple sugar derived from the breakdown of carbohydrates (or complex sugars).
Carbon(IV)oxide and water are waste products from aerobic respiration, thus organisms breathe them out.
Note: Respiration can also be anaerobic if food is broken down in the absence of oxygen.
Aerobic respiration occurs in an organelle of the cell called mitochondria and ATP is generated through the process. For this reason, the mitochondria is often regarded as the power house of the cell.
ATP is an acronym for Adenosine Tri Phosphate.
3. Nutrition: All living organisms must feed to stay alive. Without food, organisms will neither grow, reproduce nor excrete.
Plants are organisms that manufacture their own food and are thus referred to as autotrophs. Animals on the other hand depend on ready made food, thus are referred to as heterotrophs.
4. Irritability: All organisms must be able to respond to stimuli if they are to survive in their environment. As an instance, a desert plant will have its root penetrating deep into the soil in order to get water.
Based on survival instincts, all animals will attempt to fight or run for survival whenever they sense danger.
Note: A stimulus is anything that can elicit a physiological response in an organism. Stimulus can be either external or internal.
The sense organs (eyes, nose, ear, tongue and skin) acts as sensory receptors to external stimuli; that is, they receive stimuli from our environment. Examples of stimuli include touch, pressure, heat, cold, light, pain, water, sound, chemicals and so on.
Another name for irritability is sensitivity
5. Growth: All living organisms must grow in size and mass. The food we eat (preferably protein) provides the basis for our growth through cell division. In addition to enhancing growth, protein also repair worn out tissues.
6. Excretion: All living organisms must remove metabolic waste product form their body. Metabolic waste products include water, urea, carbon(IV)oxide, sweat and so on.
Feces is not a metabolic waste product. This is so because it isn't produced via the body cells. Rather, they are undigested materials eaten via the mouth but didn’t even enter the body cells in the first instance. Inshort, they are not absorbed by the intestines into the body cells.
In larger animals, The removal of solid undigested materials from the anus is termed as egestion.
7. Reproduction: All living organisms have the ability to reproduce; that is, give birth to their young or offspring. Reproduction ensures the continuity of life for the various species of organism.
Living organisms reproduce in two ways:
When both sex cells meet (usually inside the female, but could also take place externally); fertilization occurs and a zygote is formed.
The reproduction involving sperm and egg is termed sexual reproduction.
The parent organism reproduces by dividing itself (cell division or binary fission), budding, spore formation or some other means.
Reproduction in this manner is termed asexual reproduction.
8. Death: All living organism must die. After death occurs, an organism will be considered as non-living because it cannot carry out other life characteristics.
Normally, living organisms are expected to grow and mature before they die.
Death is said to occur when an organism cannot carry out the other basic characteristics of life.
9. Adaptation: All living organisms must adapt to their environment if they are to survive. For instance, a fish is able to live in water because it has gills and fins.
Also, a camel is able to survive in the desert because it has large feet to aid walking on sand without sinking. It also has long eyelashes to help protect it from the blowing sand and wind.
The point is:
All organisms have various features on them that enables them adapt within their habitat.
Note: Plants are also able to live in different habitats because they have the required adaptive features towards that habitat. For instance:
10. Competition: Due to the limitation of resources, all living organisms must be able to compete for the necessary available resources if they are to stay alive.
The limited resources include food, water, light, mates, space and so on.
You may have observed that male lizards (with red necks) map out their territories in order to enjoy all the resources within it. To this end they will usually undergo fierce competition from their male counterparts before such territories can become theirs.
The above form of behavior in male lizards is termed territorial behavior or territoriality.
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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