Topics Explored: Population, Biodiversity, Data Processing and Percent Change Analysis, Gather-Reason-Communicate with Evidence

This case study explores the remarkable comeback of the Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) population in the United States, population trends, and survivorship strategies and curves. Answer key included.

Case Study: Wild Turkeys (Teacher & Student Edition)

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  • ZIP file containing 2 PDF files 
    (1 Teacher Edition and 1 Student Edition)

  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS):
    HS-LS2-1. Use mathematical and/or computational representations to support explanations of factors that affect carrying capacity of ecosystems at different scales.
    HS-LS2-2. Use mathematical representations to support and revise explanations based on evidence about factors affecting biodiversity and populations in ecosystems of different scales.
    HS-LS2-6. Evaluate the claims, evidence, and reasoning that the complex interactions in ecosystems maintain relatively consistent numbers and types of organisms in stable conditions, but changing conditions may result in a new ecosystem.
    HS-LS2-7. Design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing the impacts of human activities on the environment and biodiversity.
    HS-LS4-6. Create or revise a simulation to test a solution to mitigate adverse impacts of human activity on biodiversity.

     

    AP® Environmental Science Learning Objectives:
    2.1 Explain levels of biodiversity and their importance to ecosystems.
    2.3 Describe island biogeorgraphy. Describe the role of island biogeography in evolution. 
    3.1 Identify differences between generalist and specialist species.
    3.2 Identify differences between K- and r-selected species.
    3.3 Explain survivorship curves.
    3.4  Describe carrying capacity. Describe the impact of carrying capacity on ecosystems.
    3.5 Explain how resource availability affects population growth.
    9.9 Explain how species become endangered and strategies to combat the problem.

     

    AP® Environmental Science Practices:
    1: Explain environmental concepts, processes, and models presented in written format. 
    2: Analyze visual representations of environmental concepts and processes. 
    3: Analyze sources of information about environmental issues. 
    4: Analyze research studies that test environmental principles. 
    5: Analyze and interpret quantitative data represented in tables, charts, and graphs.
    6: Apply quantitative methods to address environmental concepts.
    7: Propose and justify solutions to environmental problems.

     

    IB Environmental Systems Learning Objectives:
    2.1.5 Discuss how the pyramid structure affects the functioning of an ecosystem.
    2.1.6 Define the terms species, population, habitat, niche, community and ecosystem with reference to local examples.
    2.1.7 Describe and explain population interactions using examples of named species.
    2.4.2 Explain the distribution, structure and relative productivity of tropical rainforests, deserts, tundra and any other biomes.
    2.6.1 Explain the concepts of limiting factors and carrying capacity in the context of population growth.
    2.6.3 Describe the role of density-dependent and density-independent factors, and interal and external factors, in the regulation of populations.
    2.6.4 Describe the principles associated with survivorship curves including, K- and r- strategists.
    2.6.5 Describe the concept and process of succession in a named habitat.
    4.2.6 Describe the case histories of three different species: one that has become extinct, another that is critically endangered, and a third species whose conservation status has been improved by intervention.
    4.3.5 Discuss and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the speciesbased approach to conservation.

     

    AP® is a registered trademark registered by the College Board®. IB® is a trademark registered by the International Baccalaureate Organization®. This work/product/service has been developed independently from and is not endorsed by the College Board® or the International Baccalaureate Organization®.