Biology Lessons Part 2: Population Biology

Lesson 2.2: Glossary: Owl Pellets


average - the arithmetic mean; the quantity found by adding several measurements together and dividing the sum by the number of measurements; (example, the average of 12+14+13 = 39 / 3 = 13).

community - groups of organisms of two or more different species living together within the same geographical area and interacting with each other. Every community of living things depends upon its producers to convert inorganic carbon (from the carbon dioxide in the air) into organic molecules (such as sugar) through the process of photosynthesis.

frequency distribution - a statistical concept, an arrangement of data to show the number of times an event occurs in a particular way. For example, in the owl pellets lesson 2.1, we are developing a frequency distribution which shows the number of times dissected owl pellets contain different numbers of skulls.

mode - a statistical concept, the number that occurs most frequently in a set of numbers or a series of data.

population - a group of organisms belonging to the same species and living in the same geographical area; organisms in a population are capable of interbreeding.

predator - an organism, usually an animal, that catches and eats other organisms.

prey - living organisms that are caught and eaten by other organisms.

range - as a statistical concept, the smallest and largest values found in a distribution of numbers.

raptor - animal which has a hooked beak and sharp claws, and is therefore adapted for seizing prey animals.