Dictionary > Population


Reviewed by: Jonathan Cumming, PhD

noun, plural:
(genetics, ecology) A group of organisms of one species that interbreed and live in the same place at the same time (e.g. deer population)
(taxonomy) A low-level taxonomic rank
(statistics) A set of data from where a statistical sample can be drawn
(general) People inhabiting a territory, as in American population
A population refers to a group of organisms of a species that interbreed and live in the same place at the same time. They are capable of interbreeding or reproduction.
Relevant terms in the study of population include population biology, population ecology, population size, population bottleneck, population decline, etc. Population biology refers to the biological study of animal populations. It is primarily concerned with the growth and regulation of population size, population genetics, demography and life history evolution, and the interactions among species.1 Population ecology is the dynamics of the population of species. It attempts to explain the ways by which species populations interact with their environment. In population biology and population ecology, a population size pertains to the number of individual organisms in a population and is denoted by N. A population decline refers to a decline in the population of any organism. Population bottleneck is a reduction in the size of the population for a short period of time. Environmental events are one of the factors causing a population bottleneck. An increase in the population of any species exceeding the carrying capacity of an ecological niche is referred to as overpopulation.
Word origin: Latin populatio, from populus (people)
Related term(s):

Related forms:

  • populational (adjective)


1 Population. (2016). Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Population-biology.

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