Inspiring Ecosystems

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Students will survey a range of habitats from grasslands, ponds, woodlands and hedgerows. They will look at the species diversity in each area and use techniques such as transects, quadrats and water quality testing to conduct invertebrate surveys of each habitat looking at canopy cover, leaf litter, undergrowth and other factors. They will also discuss ecosystems and adaptations of different species by constructing a food web. Suitable for key stage 3 and 4.

How does this session link to the National Curriculum?

Key Stage 3 - Relationships in an ecosystem - the interdependence of organisms in an ecosystem, including food webs and insect pollinated crops. How organisms affect, and are affected by, their environment, including the accumulation of toxic materials. Genetics and evolution - changes in the environment may leave individuals within a species, and some entire species, less well adapted to compete successfully and reproduce, which in turn may lead to extinction. The importance of maintaining biodiversity and the use of gene banks to preserve hereditary material.

Key Stage 4 - Living organisms may form populations of single species, communities of many species and ecosystems, interacting with each other, with the environment and with humans in many different ways. Living organisms are interdependent and show adaptations to their environment. Methods of identifying species and measuring distribution, frequency and abundance of species within a habitat.

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