Impact of Climate Change on Amphibian Phenology
Eileen Stachowski, Susan E. Powers, Clarkson University, Potsdam NY
Type: Project module
Length: 2-4 45-minute periods
Content Area/Course: Biology, Environmental Science
Targeted Grade Level: 10-12
Prerequisite Knowledge: Basic amphibian reproductive cycles, general concepts and appreciation that the climate has been and will continue to change (presenting this background is not included in the above estimate for the length of this project).
Prerequisite Skills: Basic MS Excel experience – manipulating data, creating graphs
Technology/web resources: MS Excel
Thinking skill development: Comprehension, evaluation
NASA Resources used: None
In this computer lab, students investigate changes in the dates of frog first appearance and mating calls in the Ithaca, NY region between the early and late twentieth century. These dates are compared to a variety of monthly and seasonal average temperatures recorded at area weather stations to determine any relationship between climate changes and species reproductive cycles. Students then use future temperatures predicted by global climate models to infer further changes in frog behavior. All of the data are already compiled in an MS Excel spreadsheet.
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