Fishing Around for the Facts
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|Photo Credit: http://www.wildtrout.org/WTT/default.asp|
INTRODUCTION: What are trout? Where do they live? How do trout populate a new stream? What makes for healthy trout habitat? What role do trout play in the cycling of matter (carbon, oxygen, nitrogen) and energy in an ecosystem? How would introduced hatchery trout impact the receiving stream? These are the kinds of questions that biologist and ecologists ask when attempting to learn more about any organism and how that species fits into the larger scheme of life on earth. As we watch trout emerge from their eggs and develop into fry in our classroom, preparing for the day that we select a stream to release the survivors, you will be on a WebQuest. This Fishing Around for the Facts WebQuest has been designed to help you understand what it means to be, live, and survive as a “trout” or population of trout in a given ecosystem.
SCIENCE STANDARDS: This WebQuest has been designed to specifically address the High School California Academic Content Standards for Biology/Life Sciences stressing the science and study of Ecology. This standard specifically states that the…
6. Stability in an ecosystem is a balance between competing effects. As a basis for understanding this concept, students know:
TASKS: Stability in an ecosystem is a balance between competing factors. The student's task will be to determine and describe a healthy, stable ecosystem that can support a viable population of “introduced” hatchery raised trout. In order to accomplish this task each student will need to:
SITUATION: It is June, the summer after your junior year at the University of California in Riverside. Your major is biology. You have just begun a summer internship with the California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG). Since your home address is in the Mojave Desert, you have been assigned to region 6, the “Inland Deserts” district of the CDFG.
Sandy, your supervisor, has been busy all year participating with a statewide team of wild land managers to develop the “West Mojave Coordinated Management Plan”. The day you arrive she receives the following request from her supervisor in Sacramento:
Because of her other time commitments, Sandy decides to make this task your internship project. Giving you a couple of examples of other “preliminary finding” reports, you and Sandy put together a rough outline of information that will be needed in the report:
SECTION 1: Title Page, Abstract and Problem Statement
1. Title Page
3. Problem Statement
SECTION 2: Review of Literature
1. Trout Taxonomy: (4 or fewer paragraphs and an illustration)
Before conducting your research for this section of the report, review your notes and read (skim over) chapters 17 and 30 in your textbook (Biology: The Dynamics of Life, © 2002).
2. Trout Life Cycle:
3. Healthy Stream Habitat:
Before conducting this next two searches, read section 2.2 Nutrition and Energy Flow in your textbook (Biology: The Dynamics of Life, © 2002).
4. Trout and Regional Biogeochemical Cycles: How do carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen cycle through trout?
5. Energy Flow: (4 or fewer paragraphs with diagram)
SECTION 3: Field Data
1. Current & Historical Information: Abiotic Factors
2. Current & Historical Information: Biotic Factors
3. Natural Reproduction Viability
SECTION 4: Significant Findings & Preliminary Conclusion
1. Compare the findings collected in your review of literature to what you learned about the waters and surrounding ecosystems of the Mojave River and its inhabitants and highlight any important findings specific to the question of “if the perennially flowing section of the Mojave River between the Mojave River Narrows Regional Park and the Lower Mojave River Narrows at Rock View Nature Center, can support a viable and self-maintaining population of hatchery released trout.” (1 paragraph)
2. Give a preliminary answer to the question, “can the perennially flowing section of the Mojave River between the Mojave River Narrows Regional Park and the Lower Mojave River Narrows at Rock View Nature Center, support a viable and self-maintaining population of hatchery released trout?” and support it using findings gathered and stated in the report. (1 paragraph)
AVAILABLE RESOURCES: Besides making books in her field office’s library available to you, Sandy has provided you with the following list of web resources that she uses when preparing similar reports. She also suggests that you check out resources that are available at local libraries and trout hatcheries in your community to help you with your task.
Sandy’s Web Resource List:
Links to Resources that support Mojave Desert Studies
Freshwater Fish in California
California Fish Hatcheries
Hatchery Trout "strains"
Trout Strains/ Fish Food
Genetic Studies [Rainbow Trout and/or Steelhead]
General Rainbow Trout Information
Trout and Salmon Enhancement Programs
Trout “Kind” Gallery
Trout Habitat Gallery
Trout Ecology / Biology, Ecology, Geology Related Vocabulary
Trout Ecology / Biotic components
Trout Ecology / Life Cycle
Mojave River Wildlife
Deep Creek (East Fork of the Mojave River)
Collecting Data at a River
Information Data Bases
Mojave River Flow Information
Statewide Stream and River Flow data
EVALUATION: Sandy, your CDFG
internship supervisor uses a rubric to evaluate her work before sending
it on to Sacramento. She will be using the same rubric to evaluate
your draft. Your summer internship program grade with the university
will depend on her assessment. The rubric that she will use is as
Copyright © 2003, Matthew Huffine, Lewis Center for Educational Research
Apple Valley, California 92307