(1) Energy-driven complex of one or more organisms and their environment. (2) Organisms, together with their abiotic environment, forming an interacting system, inhabiting an identifiable space. (3) The whole system, in the sense of physics, including not only the organism complex but also the whole complex of physical factors, forming what we call the environment. (4) The complex of living and nonliving components in a specified location that comprise a stable system in which the exchange of material follows a circular path such as a biome. (5) A community of organisms and the environment in which they live. (6) A system of ecological relationships in a local environment, including relationships between organisms, and between the organisms and the environment itself. Synonym: ecological system. [Source: USDA National Plant Materials Manual]

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