What is a "niche" in biology?


Quick Answer

The niche that an organism occupies is the opening in the environment that the organism fills to make a living. A species' niche is its place in an ecosystem relative to the other organisms present.

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What is a "niche" in biology?
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Full Answer

Examples of niches found in nature include herbivores, which are adapted to extract energy from plants, and carnivores, which get their energy from eating herbivores. In a mature ecosystem, specialist niches arise within these broad categories. Some predators, for example, specialize in long-distance endurance running, while others specialize in ambush-style attacks on prey. Each of these is a unique approach to gathering food that different species adopt.

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