Lion Country Safari Ecology
(Designed for grades 9-12)
Recognize that catastrophic events; climate changes; human activity; and the introduction of invasive, non-native species may result in loss of biodiversity.
Ecology is the study of interactions among organisms and their environment. Every living organism in an ecosystem exerts visible as well as invisible influences over every other living organism in that ecosystem. As a result, the types of relationships that can develop within any habitat are infinite in number. Ecosystems are always changing, due to seasonal variations, succession, climate change, and population changes. A number of factors can contribute to declining populations, leading to threatened or endangered species. The Species Survival Plan (SSP) or the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) aims to ensure genetic diversity among endangered species. Students will learn how zoologists work with the SSP to make breeding recommendations of specific animals. At this advanced level of high school study, students will think about ways that humans interact with wildlife and wild places , with an emphasis on how people can help to improve the environment by making informed decisions.
This program meets the following Next Generation Sunshine State Standards and is STEAM compliant:
SC.912.L.17.1: Discuss the characteristics of populations, such as number of individuals, age structure, density, and pattern of distribution.
SC.912.L.17.16: Discuss the large-scale environmental impacts resulting from human activity, including waste spills, oil spills, runoff, greenhouse gases, ozone depletion, and surface and groundwater pollution.
SC.912.L.4: Describe changes in ecosystems resulting from seasonal variations, climate change, and succession.
SC.912.L.5: Analyze how population size is determined by births, deaths, immigration, emigration, and limiting factors (biotic and abiotic) that determine carrying capacity.
SC.912.L.6: Compare and contrast the relationships among organisms, including predation, parasitism, competition, commensalism, and mutualism.
SC.912.L.17.8: Recognize the consequences of the losses of biodiversity due to catastrophic events, climate changes, human activity, and the introduction of invasive, non-native species.
MAFS.K12.A-REI.1.1: Explain each step in solving a simple equation as following from the equality of numbers asserted at the previous step, starting from the assumption that the original equation has a solution. Construct a viable argument to justify a solution method.
VA.912.C.2.2: Synthesize knowledge and skills learned from non-art content areas to support the processes of creation, interpretation, and analysis.
Supplemental Materials for Teachers:
Habitats 3 Activity 1
This activity is designed to introduce students to factors that can contribute to the loss of biodiversity.
Habitats 3 Activity 2
Lead a discussion with the class by following these topic ideas. What other questions related to the environment can the students think of?