The experiment conducted involves the factor of vigilance when it comes to keep clear of the predators. Vigilance forms the part of the behavioral ecology and refers to an animal’s examination of its surroundings so that it can keep itself safe and at a good distance from its enemy. It is an important habit while searching for wild food resources i.e. foraging as the animals or the prey becomes most vulnerable during that time. Though vigilance is important yet it makes the animal face anHabit/strategyon the other activities, The time that can be used in selecting a food resource and feeding on it needs to be balanced with being vigilant.
In the study conducted, the predator=prey relationship that has been studied is between Osprey and fish as my location is near to the freshwater pond. The study conducted(here is where – need to include a discussion over about two paragraphs of what is known about osprey and predator prey) involves the scenario that whether the feeding habits of the fishes are affected by the presence of Osprey. The identification of the changes helps in acknowledging the fact whether there are changes in the behavior of the prey or no(Gluck, 1987).
1. The effect of the presence of predator on the prey is to be analyzed
2. The changes that occur in the eating pattern are to be observed
3. The development of predator-prey relationship is to be done
4. The effect of vigilance on other activities is to be highlighted
Methods and Materials
The study involved required a fresh water pond or lake where fresh water fishes were available in abundance. The other important factor was the presence and frequency of the predator to feed on the fishes. In my experiment I set up two facts under consideration. One was the frequency of Osprey and their number. Other aspect to be dealt was the variation according to the time of the day. Artificial food was provided to the fishes and the change in their feeding speed was observed with and without the presence of the predator(10 Examples of Predator-Prey Relationships).
I required a camera to make videos of as and when the predator approached and the way prey reacted. The entire study was done by keeping in mind the disturbances due to the traffic on the adjacent road and the variable weather conditions with it being warm or rainy alternatively. The results obtained may have some inconsistency due to the obstruction in video recording.
Methods and materials should be clearly described. The project should be designed specifically to test the predictions.
– include approximate population of lake
– counted osprey in the area
– fed fish( in the miIDle of the lake?) and marked their change in speed with/without osprey
– account for your presence? How did Osprey react?
– How do you think those disturbances affected fish? Or do you think they affected osprey? In which ways?.. Osprey pretty resilient to human presence.
– generally a good start
– many questions – how were fish monitored? fish are underwater and therefore need to explain vantage point
– how were fish fed in relation to Osprey feeding? Osprey use miIDle of lake or deep areas to hunt and dive bomb at crazy rates of speed – how did this work with observer in area?
– what factors are being analyzed or tested and how will they be analyzed eg which statistical tests
– see also notes in results because there are many other facts introduced that need to be accounted for
Presentation of the results should be well organized. Tables and graphs should illustrate results, and appropriate statistical tests and interpretations should be used.
– how were the head jerk rate measured? (Operational definition included_
– how did you observe the fish observing the osprey? Need background literature on this.
need tests of statistical significance
– Need to include what measurement, how long observation period etc. methods?
– “Mean duration” is a new variable therefore must include:
o Give a night time and day time they were observed. How were fish seen at night? Do ospreyfish at night ? (support w. literature)
– Worms were used? Again how were fish obserbed?
Through the experiment conducted it was analyzed that the presence of a predator has a real time effect on the prey. The prey becomes more vigilant and this leads to a negative effect on the other activites like feeding and movement (Breed, 2001). As predicted, the vigilance is a behavioral factor that affects the activities of the prey in an adverse manner.
A good discussion should meet some or all of the following criteria:
Elaborate how to improve (other research questions?, etc.)
Interprets results with regard to the predictions.
Relates results to the background literature.
Suggests problems with the design and potential solutions.
Raises other research question
Understanding of the natural relationship of predator-prey as ecological components is necessary to identify the behavioural changes among the species. On one side, the consideration of population dynamics of predator is dependent on the population of prey (Glück, 1987). These suggest that habitat location, availability of food resources, and suitability of environmental condition are likely factors that have an influence on the predatory population.
Likewise, maintaining of population dynamics for prey is also dependent on the predatory population (Allesina & Tang, 2012). This, in particular, is important because the absence of predator population will lead to uncontrolled reproduction among the prey. This will further have a negative influence on the food resources as well as the habitat location. Overall, with the alteration in the population dynamics of a predator as well as prey, the ecosystem balance is likely to be influenced.
Predator-prey relationship is the normal phenomenon of the ecosystem, where one species depends on another (as a food source) for the survival (Allesina & Tang, 2012). The interdependence of species on another is thus maintaining the ecological cycle, where a decrease in population of one species (prey) severely affects the population of another (predator).
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