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Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data

ISSUES: DATA SET Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data


THE ECOLOGICAL QUESTION:
How does a bald eagle population change over time at a winter migratory stopover and which factors influence its abundance?



WHAT STUDENTS DO:
Guided Approach: Students will generate questions about bald eagle numbers influenced by weather and food availability. Students will then use graphing software (JMP or Excel) to compile the data in a graphical form to answer their questions.



Open-ended Approach: Students will generate their own hypotheses of interest from the larger bald eagle data set. This approach is encouraged for upper division ecology students in conservation biology, wildlife management, or population ecology classes.
Optional: Field trip to see migrating bald eagles



SKILLS:
Generation of a hypothesis, critical thinking, experimental design, data management using a spreadsheet, graph preparation, data analysis and interpretation, and/or written or oral presentation.
Cumulative Rating: This resource has a 4 star rating (based on 1 response)
Format
Resource Group QUBES
Resource Group Link http://ecoed.esa.org/index.php?P=AdvancedSearch&Q=Y&FK=QUBES&RP=5&SR=...
Primary or BEN resource type
Discipline Specific Core Concepts
Life science discipline (subject)
Keywords Bald eagle biology, conservation biology, endangered species, population ecology, and migration ecology
Audience
Intended End User Role
Language
Educational Language
Pedagogical Use Description Brainstorming, critical thinking, concept mapping, cooperative learning, guided inquiry, and/or open-ended inquiry
Primary Author Controlled Name
Primary Author Affiliation Department of Biology, Gonzaga University, Spokane WA, 99258
Primary Author email beckstead@gonzaga.edu
Rights Spring 2010. The Ecological Society of America. Teaching Issues and Experiments in Ecology (TIEE) is a
project of the Education and Human Resources Committee of the Ecological Society of America
(http://tiee.esa.org).
Date Of Record Submission 2011-02-08

Resource Comments

Subject: Comment On: Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data
Posted By: eduintern
Date Posted: 2016-06-16 10:49:31
See posts by

Dustin Wilgers at https://qubeshub.org/collections/post/1214/

This message was edited by tmourad on July 29, 2016 at 12:52 pm.

Subject: Comment On: Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data
Posted By: carriekissman
Date Posted: 2016-05-24 12:54:46
We completed this activity as part of our Earth Day celebration in one 60min lecture period in my Second Semester Majors Introductory Biology Course. The course had 5 sections of 20-24 students each. We had already completed the HHMI Excel Tutorials and the TIEE Phenology and Climate Change Module in previous labs, so it was possible to complete the full guided activity (minus performing the regression analyses-we just used trend lines and R2 values) and have a short discussion in 60 min.
I added an updated ppt introduction (modified from Dustin Wilgers) which can be found here: https://qubeshub.org/collections/post/1492/comment
Subject: Comment On: Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data
Posted By: aprilann
Date Posted: 2016-05-23 12:04:49
I used this module at the end of an introductory Principles of Wildlife Management course (the course has no quantitative component). The module was used to apply wildlife management principles to a real world case study. The MSWord file has student questions that were modified from the original Guided Version of the module. Changes were made to attempt to make the questions less wordy and to add a question focused on wildlife management. I used it with freshman students who needed guidance with graphing in Excel. Questions 1-3 were assigned as homework, 4-5 were done in the computer lab (1 hr 15 min lecture), and discussion questions for homework.

The Word file can be accessed at https://qubeshub.org/collections/post/1486

This message was edited by aprilann on May 23, 2016 at 12:05 pm.

Subject: Comment On: Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data
Posted By: JosephineRodriguez
Date Posted: 2016-05-19 14:08:16
This is the "condensed" version of the Eagle Lab that was done in a single lab period (~3 hours). We focused just on:
Part I: How does the bald eagle population at a winter stopover change over three decades?
Part II: How do salmon abundance and December temperatures influence bald eagle numbers
The link to condensed lab handout is here:
https://qubeshub.org/groups/esa/collections/post/1465
Subject: Comment On: Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data
Posted By: JosephineRodriguez
Date Posted: 2016-05-19 14:07:27
This module was implemented in a 1st year course (lab) designed for majors, but is also an option for non-majors to fulfill general education requirements. Before we started the lab, a PPT on quadratic regression and basic statistical analyses in Excel was presented (that PPT is available in this Collection). I then gave this brief PPT on Bald Eagles and I introduced the module. I cut the module to only the guided exercises and to work on the questions:
Part I: How does the bald eagle population at a winter stopover change over three decades?
Part II: How do salmon abundance and December temperatures influence bald eagle numbers?
The module still took about 3 hours and 15 minutes to complete, but it all fit in the single lab period we had allotted for this particular module. 
The Introductory PPT can be accessed here:
https://qubeshub.org/groups/esa/collections/post/1464
Subject: Comment On: Exploring the population dynamics of wintering bald eagles through long-term data
Posted By: jav6e
Date Posted: 2016-05-09 11:07:01
A biologist and I (mathematician) co-taught this module in our Biological Diversity Lab at a small liberal arts college. Most of the students were freshman with only about half biology majors. Our Lab sections consist of 1 hour a pre-lab lecture and 3 hours of actual lab. We used this in two sections for a total of about 30 students. We lectured for about 45 minutes and then it took the students around 2 hours 20 minutes to complete the module questions using the guided approach. We used the Climate Change Phenology TIEE module in our lab before teaching this module. I think that worked very well because the quantitative material required for this lab built nicely on the material need for the phenology module. We did teach these two labs in successive weeks which might be a bit much. Next time we plan to do a less quantitative lab between these two modules.

I put together a PowerPoint presentation with a quantitative review that can be accessed using the link
https://qubeshub.org/groups/esa/collections/post/1454/

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