Riparian Zone Retreat and population studies Tyler Lundquist Biology II Period 1
Niche of Chipmunk Eastern Chipmunk, Tamias striatus
The eastern chipmunk lives in open deciduous (shedding leaves annually) forests and at the edges of woodlands. Occasionally, it can be found in bushy areas and in rocky areas like walls near houses and other buildings.
The eastern chipmunk's diet consists up of nuts, acorns, seeds, mushrooms, fruits, berries and corn. It also eats insects, bird eggs, snails and small mammals such as young mice. In the winter months, it stays in its den. The eastern chipmunk does not hibernate, but it does spend a lot of time sleeping. It may wake up every few weeks to eat the food it has stored.
The eastern chipmunk spends most of its waking hours gathering and storing food for the winter. The eastern chipmunk has reddish-brown fur on its back and sides and white fur on its stomach. It has two white stripes bordered by black on its sides and one black stripe on the center of its back. The eastern chipmunk has light stripes above and below its eyes and it has pouched cheeks so that it can store and carry food over the winter.
Factors which Affect Birth Rate of Assigned Animal
Eastern chipmunks mate in early spring. The female usually has one litter a year with between three and five young. In some areas, a female might have a second litter. The young will come above ground when they are about six weeks old.
The female usually has one litter a year with between three and five young. In some areas, a female might have a second litter. The young will come above ground when they are about six weeks old.
The gestation period is 31 days.
The usual litter size is 4 to 5, even though litters as large as 9 have been discovered.
Young are cared for in the nest by their mother until they are weaned at about 6 weeks old. Soon after that they separate from their mother's range.
Mating season begins in February and lasts until April. The second begins in June and concludes in August.
Factors Which Affect the Death Rate of Assigned Animal
Eastern chipmunks are alert and fast, they take retreat to their underground burrow systems to escape from predators. Eastern chipmunks are preyed on by foxes, snakes, hawks, weasels, falcons and owls.
Eastern chipmunks have a life span of between two and three years in the wild and five to eight years in captivity.
Ectoparasites spread common diseases and infest the skin.
Sciurids hunt for food in agricultural fields causing destruction of crops, but eastern chipmunks are not present in large numbers to do considerable damage.
Food web of Assigned Organism Herbivore Producer Omnivore Carnivore Carnivore Producer Carnivore Herbivore Herbivore Omnivore Producer
Population Sampling Techniques
Ecologists use catch-and-release technique to estimate the size of different species. This way, species are conserved while getting an accurate population size
Ecologists could study how much prey are left in the area to determine the size of the eastern chipmunk. If there is an abundance of prey, it represents that the size is large. If there is a dearth amount of prey, it represents that the size is small.
Stream Quality Data & Analysis
The graph represents the number of organisms found in the Powdermill stream. Class I organisms live in the healthier stream because they can only live in high quality water. Class II organisms can endure in high quality water and low quality water. Therefore, if there are some class II organisms in the stream, it does not necessarily mean that the stream is less healthy. The reason why there is not many class III organisms is that they are heavily populated in low quality water and the Powdermill stream is high quality.
The more class I organisms menas the healthier the stream because they can only exist in high quality water. The more class II organisms results in dirtier water but not necessarily low quality water. The more class III organisms, the worse the quality of water because they survive in low quality water. The quality of water at Powdermill is extremely good by because of the abundance class I organisms found in the stream.
The water quality of the stream significantly affects the eastern chipmunk. Therefore, the more class I organisms in the water is good because it means the quality of water is also good. If the quality of water is high, than the soil around it is also high quality because it is in a healthy environment. It is extremely important for the soil to be healthy so that the food that the chipmunk preys on grows. Everything chipmunks rely on for food would not be in that particular environment if the soil was bad because plant life would not be able to grow. Therefore, the nuts, acorns and berries they feast on would not be present. This means they could not consume the barks off trees and the bird eggs they rely on for food would not be there as well. The many plants they consume daily would not be able to grow because they need high quality soil to grow. The high quality water allows for the chipmunk to have most its food in that environment. With low quality water the food they eat would not be available for consumption. As a result, the eastern chipmunk would die off.
Water Testing Data & Analysis
The greater amount of phosphates and nitrates, the worse quality water you will have because this means that fertilizer or a dead animal could polluting the water. The greater amount of dissolved oxygen is good for your stream because this means the water is colder which is essential for organisms to survive in the water. If there is a lack of oxygen in the stream, the water might be too warm and some organisms will not be able to live in that climate. pH is very important to the health of the stream. You want the pH to be between 6.5 and 7.5 because that indicates a healthy stream. If your pH is above 7 your water is more basic and if it is below, your water is more acidic.
For Powdermill, the nitrate and phosphate levels are at zero which is good because this means their water is not being contaminated. Also, the dissolved oxygen level is at 11.0, which is also good because the water has a lot of oxygen in it. Which means the water is cold, and therefore the water is good for the organisms to survive. The pH level at Powdermill is at 7.0, which is at perfect conditions. For places outside Powdermill, water is covered with nitrates and phosphates, that would be an indication that there is something wrong because the water is contaminated. If the water is not high in oxygen, than this would mean there is probably not much life occurring in the stream, and finally if the pH level of the stream is above 7, it is basic. If it is below, they have acidic water. Both of these are not good for carrying out life in the stream.
Soil Testing & Analysis
Neutral levels of pH, potash, phosphorus, and nitrogen levels in the soil.is extremely important for plant life. If the soil is not healthy, then plant life dies and it negatively affects the whole food web.
The ideal range of chemicals above the soil is from 6.5 to 7.5.
If the chemical levels are out of the ideal range, plant growth is stunted. Therefore, everything that relies on plants die off as a result.
Positive and Negative Factors Since the current stream, marsh and mine waters are healthy, it mean that the environment is good for the eastern chipmunk. Since the stream is healthy, it means that life exist in the stream so other organisms can consume the organisms present in the streams and that the chipmunk can consume off of those organisms. The same concept applies for the marsh because this also allows organisms to exist, so this keeps food in storage for their predators, which keeps food in storage for the chipmunk. Because the mine waters are healthy, this benefits the chipmunk because it restrains pollution out of the stream and if the stream is polluted, it cleans out the organisms in the stream, and this will not permit the chipmunk to survive because it affects the whole food web. Factors that positively affect the riparian zone could be planting trees, eluding from harmful littering, and avoiding taking away from the natural habitat. Planting a tree is useful because it gives off oxygen and it also gives a shelter for animals to live like the chipmunk. A tree provides shade for the stream, which is practical because it keeps the temperature of the stream down to safe temperatures, so the water can be filled an abundance of oxygen it desperately needs. Avoiding littering is very harmful to the environment. If one engages in littering, this will pollute the riparian zone. If polluted, this will add phosphates and nitrates to the stream and the class I organisms will not be able to survive. Eluding litter will eliminate this risk. Avoiding taking away from the natural habitat will preserve life in the riparian zone. The more trees that are preserved, the more shelters the eastern chipmunk has. Factors that can negatively affect the riparian zone are dead animals in the stream and the burning of fossil fuels. Dead animals negatively affect the riparian zone because if they are immersed in water, they add phosphates and nitrates, which results in the dying off of organisms. Again this will affect the food chain, which will eventually affect the chipmunk because the predator-prey relationships will be damaged. The burning of fossil fuels is simple. The fossil fuels will pollute the air and the water in the wildlife, which will affect the organisms. The water will have high turbidity and the predators will have poor visibility. As a result, they will not be able to have vision to catch their prey. Photosynthesis would also be corrupted.
I leaned that you can determine the quality of the stream by the organisms present. I also learned that there is more oxygen in cold water and turbidity is a huge factor in the water.
I found the marsh Machine at Powdermill to be interesting. It is interesting on how they are able to recycle water.
I would like to research more on organisms found in different classes of water. It was interesting to know what organisms I was going to find at Powdermill just by knowing the quality of water.
Works Cited Online Book Title- Chapter 4:Life in Woodlands Wild Animals Date- 2003 Pg number- 54 Website address- http://web.ebscohost.com Encyclopedia Title- Eastern Chipmunk Name of Encyclopedia – Grolier Website address- http:// go.grolier.com Date of website updated- 5/5/09 Website Title- Eastern Chipmunk Name-http://www.fcps.edu Website address: http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Tamias_striatus.html