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FieldStudy

By:AustinMarshall
5th/6thPeriodSTEM

Objective:
TheobjectiveofourfieldstudyprojectatO'Hairparkistostudyandobserve
howtheenvironmentworks.Wecandothisbycontinuallyobservingasiteatdifferent
timesanddaystorecordchangestoseehowmuchanenvironmentcanchange.Weare
lookingtoseeseasonalchanges,weatherchanges,andchangesinthelocalanimals,
birds,insects,andplants.

SiteDescription:
MysiteinO'HairParkislocatedtowardtheendofthetrailatthemeadowtothe
left.Mysiteconsistsofasingletreesurroundedbyabushwithaboutthreeor
fourdifferenttypesofplantsgrowinginitandasmallgrassyclearingaroundit.Someof
theplansthatconsistofthebushbythebaseofthetreehavesmallflowerbuds.Thereis
alsoasmallholeinthebush,probablycreatedbysomekindofanimalforshelterat
somepointintime.Thereisalimitedamountofshadeinmysiteespeciallyaroundnoon.
Theonlysourcesofshadeonmysmallsitearethetreeinthemiddleandatreecloseby
thatcastasmallshadowinthesiteinthemorning.TheonlyanimalsIhaveseensofar
nearmysiteareoccasionalsquirrelsandbirds.Thesitesmellslikefreshairandhas
nospecificallystrongsmells.Birdscanbeheardallaroundmysiteandyoucanhearan
occasionalwoodpeckerinthedistance.
Ipredictthatthesitewillchangealittlebitbutnottoodrastically.Ipredictthatin
thenextsixweekstheflowerbudsinthebushwillallhaveopenedandmaybeeven
fallenoffsinceflowersonlystayinbloomforacoupleofweeks.Themajorityofthe
grassaroundthebushandtreewasalreadydying,butIpredictthefewspotsofgreen
grassleftwillbedeadbythetimewefinishthisprojectbecauseweareindroughtand
grasstendstorequirelotsofwatertosurvive.Ialsopredictthatthemoredroughttolerant
plantswillsurviveandmaybeevenincreaseinsize.TotrackthesechangesIwillneedto
takenewphotosofthemplantseverycoupleofweekstoseetheirchange.

SiteOverviewMap

Measurements
Plant1height
Juniperbush
height
Pomegranate
plantheight
Persimmon
Treeheight
Persimmon
Tree%ofleaf
coverage
Grass%of
living
Grass%of
dead
Grassheight
Estimationof
Beesseen
Animalsseen

Intro
1ft.
2ft.

Week2
1ft.1in.
2ft.

Week3
1ft.1in.
2ft.

Week4
1ft.1in.
2ft.1in.

Week5
1ft.2in.
2ft.1in.

Week6
1ft.2in.
2ft.2in.

2ft.6in.

2ft.7in.

2ft.7in.

2ft.8in.

2ft.8in.

2ft.9in.

15ft.

15ft.

15ft.

15ft.

15ft.

15ft.

85%

87%

90%

95%

95%

95%

1520%

15%

15%

13%

10%

10%

8085%

85%

85%

87%

90%

90%

26in.
1

48in.
3

59in.
2

610in.
1

714in.
3

816in.
2

Birds

Birdsand
lizards

Birdsand
insects

Birdsand
various
insects

Birds,
bees,more
insects

Averageday
temperature
Average

70degrees

67degrees

68degrees

64degrees

Birds,
spiders,
other
insects
72degrees

47degrees

46degrees

48degrees

49degrees

52degrees

53degrees

73degrees

Evening
temperature
Lengthofday

13hours

13hours

13hours

13hours

13hours

FocusQuestions:
Week1:

1. Mysitehasatemperatewoodlandandshrublandbiome.Itisthisbiomebecause
ofmoderateweather/temperature,mildrainfall,andthegrowthofplantlife.
2. Asymbioticrelationshipinmysiteiswiththetreeandbirds.Thetreeprovides
birdswithcoverandfoodwhilethebirdshelpspreadthetreesseeds.Another
symbioticrelationshipisbetweenthefloweringbushandbeesbecausethebees
getfoodfromtheflowersandinreturnthebeespollinatethem.Acommensal
relationshipcanbeseeninthesmallopeninginthebushprovidingshelterfor
smallanimalsandinsects.Itscommensalbecausethebushesdontdirectly
benefitfromtheanimals.
3. Mysitesfoodchaingoesfromsunlighttoenergyforplants,plantseatenby
insects,insectseatenbybirds,andbirdsdecomposedtohelpfertilizeplants.

Week2:

1. Forthemostpartmansimpactisnttoolargeinmysite.Theonlymanmade
objectsarethetrailsandthebenchontheothersideofthetrail.Therewasasmall
bitofpollutioninmysitebutnotmuch.Ifoundasodacandeepinthebushand
captosomekindofbottleontheothersideofthebush.
2. Alongwitheveryplaceinnature,therearelimitingfactorsthataffectplantsand
animalswhethertheyarecausedbymanornature.Thebiggestlimitingfactorfor
theplantsinmysiteisthatweareinadroughtsothereisntmuchwaterforthe
plantsespeciallybecausemysiteisfarawayfromthecreek.Thisisveryapparent
inthegrassbecausenotasmuchshouldbedeadthistimeofyear.Iftheother
plantsdonthavedeepenoughrootstheymaynotbeabletogetenoughwaterand
eitherdieornotbeabletofocusenergyongrowingmore.Alimitingfactorfor
animalsislinkedtotheplantsbecauseiftheplantsdontgrowmoreorproduce
andseedsorflowers,thentheanimalshavetocompeteforfoodtheynormally
couldhavegotten.

Week3:
1. Bacteriaareimportantforplantsinmysitebecausetheyhelpintheprocessof
nitrogenfixation.Theychangetheatmosphericnitrogensothatitisusableto
plantsandcreatesneedednutrientsinthesoil.Theyalsohelpanimalssincethey
helpplantsprosper,thusgivinganimalsfood.Bacteriaalsocanhelpwith
animalsimmunesystems.
2. Fungiareusuallyfoundinthesoilorbydeadanimalbodies.Fungiareimportant
becausetheydecomposedeadmatterandturnitintousablenutrientsinthesoil.

13hours

3. TherearentmanyFungiinmysitesincethereisminimalshadeandnotmuch
water.Therearesomefungiunderneaththejuniperbushintheformofmossbut
barelyany.Mysiteisntverysuitableforfungibutcouldpotentiallygrowsome
inthefallwhentheweatherinmysiteismoresuitable.

Week4:
1. Theinvertebratesinmyareawouldincludebees,dragonflies,butterflies,
ladybugs,andspiders.
2. Therolesoftheinvertebratesinmyareaaretohelpplantprocesses,protectplants
fromunwantedinsects,andtoprovidefoodforanimals.Thebeesandbutterflies
providepollinationtotheplantssotheycanproduceoffspring.Thespider
protectstheplantsfromunwantedinsectsbycapturingandkillingthem.The
ladybugshelptoridtheplantsofaphidssotheplantcanbehealthy.The
dragonflyprovidesfoodforotherorganismsandeatsflyinginsectsthatmay
disturbtheplants.
3. Theladybugsandspidersarefoundwithinthefoliageoftheplantsinorderto
providecloseprotectiontocaptureinsectsharmingtheplants.Thebeesand
butterfliesarelocatedbythefloweringpartsoftheplantsbecausetheyarethere
topollinatetheplants.Dragonfliesarelocatedintheairflyingaroundmysite
becausetheyaretryingtofindsmallerinsectstoeat.

Week5:

1. Alltheplantsinmysitewouldbeidentifiedasangiospermsbecausetheyproduce
flowers.Myfirstplant,asmallunidentifiedplantwithatallfloweringstalk,isa
dicotangiospermbecauseofitsmultipleveinsandleaves.Thegrassesinmysite
wouldbemonocotangiospermsbecausetheyhavefewsingularveinsandonly
haveoneleaf.Thejuniperbushwouldbeadicotangiospermbecauseofits
multipleleaves.Thepomegranateplantisadicotangiospermbecauseofits
multipleveinsandleaves.Finally,Thepersimmontreeisadicotangiosperm
becauseithasmultipleleaveswithseveralveins.Picturesofthesefiveplantscan
beseenbelowunderweek5pictures.

Week6:

1. Theessentialnutrientsneededinsoilarenitrogen,phosphorus,andpotassium.
Nitrogenhelpstoproduceflowers,promotegrowth,andisneedintheplants
chlorophyll.Phosphorushelpswithphotosynthesis,rootgrowth,formsugars,and
effectsflowerblooming.Potassiumhelpswithfruitquality,productionof
proteins,andreducingdiseases.
2. Themostvisiblesourceofpollinationinmysiteisfrombeespollinatingthe
flowersthroughcrosspollination.Thewindcanalsopollinateplantsbycarrying
pollenfromoneplanttoanotherbutthisishardtoobserve.Thelastformof
pollinationisselfpollination,wherethesameplantsstamenandstigmainteract.

3. Mostoftheplantsinmyareahavealladaptedtobeabletosustainlifewithlittle
amountsofwaterandstillflourishsincemysiteidfarfromthecreekandwerein
adrought.Anotheradaptationiswiththejuniperbushandpomegranateplants
sincetheygrewthrougheachothertobothgetsunlightinthepersimmontree.All
theplantshavealsoadaptedtothesoilbecausesomethenutrientsinthesoilare
lowandmostoftheplantsarestillgrowingwell.