The following common terms can be used to describe living things in their environment:

  • environment - all the conditions that surround a living organism
  • habitat - the place where an organism lives
  • population - all the members of a single species that live in a habitat
  • community - all the populations of different organisms that live together in a habitat
  • ecosystem - a community and the habitat in which it lives
Oak tree environment. Root and litter zone has bacteria, earthworms, wood lice and funghi. Trunk has insects and larvae. Branches and leaves have bees, wasps, moths, squirrels, bluetits and hawks.Each zone of this oak tree is home to a distinct community of organisms


Biodiversity is a measure of the variety of different species living in a habitat. The greater the number of different species in a habitat, the greater its biodiversity.