Riparian Zone Retreat Ty Ferlin, Biology I, and Period 4
Niche of Assigned Organism The Elk Cervus Elaphus <ul><li>The elk prefer a woodland habitat, that isn’t dense and unbroken. They are found in swamps, clear cuts, aspen forests, and coniferous-wood forests. Mostly found in the Northern hemisphere. They are also found in high elevations and rocky places like the Rocky Mountains in Colorado and Arizona. </li></ul><ul><li>This animal feeds on grasses, sedges, wooded trees full of leaves, and flowers. </li></ul><ul><li>In the “rut” which is in late September and throughout October, male Elk (bulls) loose their antlers and begin to compete for females. In the Fall they mate, and in the Spring the bulls leave the females to give birth. They use their antlers and ram into each other to fight, and fighting can cause damage to the animal, exhaustion, and even death. When a offspring is born, there is only one (twins are very rare). After the calf is born, it and his mother will live alone for several days. At 16 days old, it can join the herd with the others. All the elk protect the young by surrounded them from other animals that could cause harm. Elk are herbivores, so they mostly eat all plants. </li></ul>
Food Chain of the Elk The Aspen forest (producer; autotroph) is consumed by the Elk (primary consumer; herbivore), which is then eating by it’s predator, the mountain lion (secondary consumer; carnivore). Finally, the mountain lion is consumed by the tertiary consumer, the human. Producer Autotroph Primary Consumer Herbivore Secondary Consumer Carnivore Tertiary Consumer Omnivore
Food Web of Assigned Organism Draw and explain a possible food web for your researched animal. Include a description of the trophic level(s) in which each organism is found. Herbivore Producer Omnivore Carnivore Carnivore Producer Producer Carnivore Herbivore Herbivore Omnivore
Stream Quality Data & Analysis <ul><li>The graph here represents a good healthy stream quality. </li></ul><ul><li>The more numbers in class I describes the healthier part of the stream. If you have a lot of organisms in class III than any other stream, your stream has poor stream quality. </li></ul><ul><li>This stream is healthy and it would benefit my organism, because it can drink and not have to worry. It also could eat plants that live in this type of water . </li></ul>
Water Testing Data & Analysis <ul><li>The pH level is at a good level at around 7 in the stream and marsh lands. But in the mine, the water tends to be a little acidic, and it’s isn’t healthy to drink. </li></ul><ul><li>The nitrate and phosphate level in the water should be zero for the stream to be healthy. Dissolved oxygen levels should be as close to as 10mg/L as possible. The most basic pH level is 7. </li></ul><ul><li>My organism would definitely survive in this powdermill stream by drinking the water and it could also eat a different variety of plants that grow there. But if the elk drank some of the mined water, it could get sick or potentially die because of the acidic levels. In the marsh, it could only get sick of the high nitrate levels. </li></ul><ul><li>The turbidity effects the clearness of the water and how murky/cloudy the water can get. The only main temperature problem that can happen is that the water freezes and that the elk cannot drink it, because it is now a solid(ice). </li></ul>
Positive and Negative Factors <ul><li>. When people mine in the habitat of elk, they are taking away their food sources, like various types of plants. The mines can also make the streams around the elk acidic, and it can kill some of them off if they consume the acidic water. </li></ul><ul><li>Some of the negative factors of a coal mine in their habitat are mainly air pollution and of course the destruction of the elk’s food, plants. The green house gases produces 3% of acidic gases into the atmosphere. Also the people that live amongst the elk, litter into the streams and create dangers for the organisms that live there, in the stream, and the animals that consume the water to drink. People too create clean-up crews to clean the littered places and streams to make the streams and land healthy for the animals to live safely. </li></ul>
Conclusion <ul><li>That elk in national parks are being reduced because there are too many of them. I always thought the parks needed more elk. </li></ul><ul><li>When coal mines are being used in the elk’s environment, they gases the machines and the workers produce, makes up 3% of the atmosphere. </li></ul><ul><li>How many elk are in each state, and how many are killed each year by different events, diseases, or poachings. </li></ul>- In the Washington Post, scientist took an elk count and said that there were too many elk in national parks. So they have to reduce the amount of herds.
Work Cited http://www.earthjustice.org/library/features/pollution-giant-new-colorado-coal-mine.html http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/10/AR2008021002215.html -Biology class notes - Powdermill information packets http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_an_elks_habitat
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