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Graph 1: Rabbits Over Time

rabbits graph

a. The graph shows a __________ growth curve.
b. The carrying capacity for rabbits is ______
c. During which month were the rabbits in exponential growth?

Graph 2: Mexico and US

population pyramid

a. In Mexico, what percentage of the population is between 0-4 years of age? _______ In the US? ______
b. Which population is growing the fastest? ________
c. Which age group has the smallest number in both countries? _____

Chart 3: Trapping Geese

In order to estimate the population of geese in Northern Wisconsin, ecologists marked 10 geese and then released them back into the population. Over a 6 year period, geese were trapped and their numbers recorded.

Year Geese Trapped Number with Mark
1980 10 1
1981 15 1
1982 12 1
1983 8 0
1984 5 2
1985 10 1


a. Use the formula to calculate the estimated number of geese in the area studied? _____________
b. This technique is called ____________ & ______________
c. Supposing more of the geese found in the trap had the mark, would the estimated number of geese in the area be greater or lesser? _____

Chart 4: Mushroom Plots

Another ecologist uses a different method to estimate the number of mushrooms in a forest. She plots a 10x10 area and randomly chooses 5 spots, where she counts the number of mushrooms in the plots and records them on the grid.


a.Calculate the number of mushrooms in the forest based on the grid data: _________________
b. Thie technique is called _______________

Chart 5: Snakes & Mice

Year Snakes Mice born Mice died
1960 2 1000 200
1970 10 800 300
1980 30 400 500
1990 15 600 550
2000 14 620 600
2001 15 640 580

The data shows populations of snake and mice found in an experimental field.

a. During which year was the mouse population at zero population growth? ______
b. What is the carrying capacity for snakes ? ______
c. What is the carrying capacity for mice? _____
d. What is the rate of growth (r) for mice during 1970? _____ During 1980? ______

More Resources on Ecology

Case Study – Loggerhead Turtles and Population Models – explore the number of eggs hatched and survivorship

Ecology Case Study – The Wolves of Isle Royale – population decline and reintroduction of wolves

Modeling Survivorship Curves with Bubbles – simulate survival patterns with this fun bubble activity

Predator Prey Graph – graph data on deer and wolf populations (growth curves)

Random Sampling – estimate a population of “sunflowers”