BIO3015F - Ecology

36 credits at NQF level 7

Entry Requirements:


Course Outline:

This course concerns advanced topics in African terrestrial ecology. We span variation in scale, from local community ecology (such as of freshwaters) to ecosystem ecology (such as the dynamics of fynbos, forest and savanna). We focus on plants and animals, as well as their interactions. Important environmental factors (such as soil, climate and water) are also considered. Some further topics that are dealt with are biogeochemistry (from geology and nutrients to plant and animal distributions), disturbance and succession (such as the role of fire and herbivory), patterns and causes of animal and plant distributions and of species richness. The course is fieldwork-orientated with a two-week fieldtrip before the first semester starts. This provides ample opportunity for lectures as well as studying plants, animals, their interactions and the role of local environments. During the rest of the semester emphasis is placed on completing practical assignments, with only a limited number of lectures/tutorials.