Carrying capacity

maximum population size of the species that the environment can sustain indefinitely

In biology, the carrying capacity of an environment is the number of organisms of a particular species that can live there without harming the environment. If too many organisms live in an environment, it is called overpopulation.[1]

The carrying capacity of an environment can change, and humans can have an effect on the carrying capacity. For example, agriculture and irrigation allow feeding more people. Some things that can change an environment's carrying capacity are pollution and the use of natural resources.[2]


  1. "Overpopulation".
  2. "Carrying Capacity". The Environmental Literacy Council.