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Independent Study Squirrel Population (pg 79) 1. Brainstorm a list of topics related to squirrel behavior and life history 2. Write a testable question that you can investigate through an observational study a. Do not attempt to physically handle the squirrels (no trapping or luring) b. Observe them in their natural settings 3. Generate a hypothesis related to your research question 4. Outline the procedure you will follow to investigate your research question 5. Produce a data table to record your results a. Date and time of observation b. Area of observation c. Person doing the observation d. Observation data e. Anything else you think is important to the project 6. Collect data by observing squirrels twice a week (30 minutes each) for at least 4 consecutive weeks (predict it) a. Record your data in your data table b. Produce at least one graph of your results c. Take a photograph of the squirrels engaged in an activity related to your research (include a time stamp) 7. Summarize and interpret your results a. Describe trends in the data i. Explain your observations and trend evident in your graph b. Was your hypothesis supported or rejected? How do you know? Use your data and graphs to support your response c. What did you learn? d. Propose 2 follow-up questions related to your study that could be investigated, one experimental and one correlational 8. Produce a lab report a. In the form of a traditional lab report b. Include: i. Creative Title ii. Research Question iii. Hypothesis iv. Procedures v. Results 1. Tables 2. Graphs 3. Two Photos vi. Conclusion (#7: Summary of Results) 9. Submit in class the week of November 28th – December 2nd during your respective lab sessions  Summary of results must be done in complete sentences and fully supported with data in order to receive full credit!  Remember if you are working in a group, all participants should be contributing equally to the project and I should have an email from all group members stating that they are in that group  This report should be typed and printed
Independent Study: Squirrel Population Census Objectives You Will: O . gfeg and Waste Mamm desrgn and conduct research on the life history of the Eastern gray squirrel Do not attempt to trap or gather observational data in real-time on squirrels o analyze and interpret the data from your physically handle any squirrels. study Do not take unnecessary risks in Background Information conducting your study. Avoid The Eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) is native to the areas region and is the more common squirrel species in Maryland. It such as steep slopes or stream can be found in open woodlands, especially in oak-hickory near forests. where the walking north side is of difficult campus. The diet of Eastern gray squirrels includes acorns, hickory nuts, walnuts, beechnuts, and maple (buds, bark and samaras — the fruit). Glen W°°d5 ‘5 open from dawn Gray squirrels will also eat the blossoms of tulip poplars, ‘0 dUSk- Please adhere to American hombeam seeds, apples, fungi, black cherry and the University guidelines when berries of American holly. They typically mate in winter entering the Glen. (December through February) and summer (May through July), and then build nests in trees, often using old woodpecker holes or natural tree cavities. Gray squirrels typically have two litters of 2-6 pups per year. During reproductive seasons, males will frequently chase females during the day, with several males following one female as she about during the day. The species is polygamous — one male will mate with several females during any reproductive season. Gray squirrels are most active during the day and are active year round, even digging through snow during intense cold to retrieve buried nuts. Gray squirrels will make hundreds of caches, burying most of the nuts within a quarter inch of the soil surface. The gray squirrel can smell buried nuts under a foot of snow; they will burrow under deep soil to get closer to the scent of nuts to find them. The species is adapted to habitat disruption associated with human activities. Gray squirrels are common on campus and they can be observed easily. Procedure Complete the following research outline and submit to your instructor for approval BEFORE you begin your study. Design your study Begin by brainstorming a list of topics related to squirrel behavior and life history. From this list of topics, write several testable questions that you could investigate through an observational study. My research question(s): My hypothesis: 79
“A. Outline your procedure/methods for investigating your question. Collecting and analyzing data Produce a data table in which you will record your data. 0 The data table must include space to track dates/times of data collection and Design of the table must account for the variables of interest in your study. You must collect data at least twice a week for a minimum of three consecutive weeks. Bear in mind that you must collect sufficient data to produce at least one graph. Interpreting your results In your summary of results, address the following: 0 Describe 0 Explain the trends in your data. Explain what you observed during your study and explain the trends evident in your graphs. whether your hypothesis was supported, partially supported or refuted by the data. 0 If your new 0 data refuted procedure If your data to or Only partially investigate supported your your supported original hypothesis, your question then hypothesis, from describe a a then different follow-up describe a angle. study .-‘A “ that would extend or capitalize on your findings. 0 Based on your observations of gray squirrels, propose one follow-up question that could be investigated in a subsequent study. WHAT YOU NEED To TURN IN You need to turn in a typewritten procedures/methods, data ta an interpretation of your report that includes your research question(s), hYPOthesis, bie with your recorded data, graphlsl that display your data, and results A

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