animals from warmer dry areas tend to be paler than animal in colder wetter areas
Hemeotherms animals in warmer climates have larger and bigger appendages than those in colder climates. because of greater relative surface which allows heat dissapation.
Law of the Minimum
ecologiacal events and their outcomes are regulated by a few short in supply resources while others go unused. The factors in short supply are called limiting factors.
Law of tolerance
too little or too much can endager an organism
Competitive Exclusion Principle
the more two niches of species overlap the more they are going to fight and the less likely they will coexist.
demonstrates how population growth is affected by population density.
As a population nears its
, the growth rate slows. The decreased growth rate can be attributed to
when the young move away from their home habitat. some do at an early age some not until they are forced.
what seems to trigger migration?
photoperiod, or the length of the day.
daytime migrators use sun, nighttime use stars. Also use magnetic field with gravity to navigate.
problems with migration
example whooping crane.
limited populations that all go the same route and to the same place every year are more prone to catastrophic things.
is a catalogue of the discrete behaviors typically employed by a species. These behaviors are sufficiently stereotyped that an observer may record the number of such acts or the amount of time engaged in the behaviors.
what are the two main groups of behaviors?
Maintainance and social behavior
what are the mentainance behaviors?
General postures and movements (particularly locomotion)
displacement behavior. Like when a deer starts grooming itself instead of eating when a hiker approches. the behavior is not normal.
what is population genetics?
study of how genetic principles apply to entire populations.
must take into account such ecological and
evolutionary factors as population size, how individuals select mates, how individuals
are distributed across the geographic range of the population, patterns of migration,
and natural selection.
what is random genetic drift?
Changes in allele frequencies within a population that occur
at random and not as a result of mutation, selection, or the migration of individuals.
what is a gene pool?
The total genetic information present in all members of a population or
what is a gene flow?
The exchange of genetic information (i.e., genes or alleles) among
populations as a result of migration of individuals. Gene flow often helps to
maintain similar levels of genetic variance among populations of a species.
what is inbreeding?
Sexual reproduction between individuals who are more closely
related than would be expected given the effective population size, which would
determine an average probability of selecting two individuals at random. This
process can lead to a decrease in heterozygosity in a population and thus a decrease
in the genetic variance.
what is genetic variance?
Variance in allele frequency among samples taken from a
population or among subpopulations.
what is township
north and south
what is range
west and east
heterozygosity is what?
a measure of the average probability that an
individual will have two different alleles for any gene, or the average probability of
heterozygous alleles for any gene, per individual, within a population
whta is population bottleneck?
A severe reduction in the size of, or number of individuals
in, a population. Such reductions often are temporary, with numbers of individuals
in a population subsequently increasing
what is the founder effect?
When a new population is founded by a few individuals who
possess only part of the full genetic variation of that species. The new population
often has a much more limited amount of genetic variation than other populations
of the species and the new population may have much different allele frequencies.
Sometimes considered an extreme form of genetic drift.
what is effective population size?
Essentially, the number of individuals in a population
with the possibility of contributing genes to the next generation. In more generalized
terms, it can be thought of as the number of mature, reproducing individuals in a
what is genetic fitness
relative competative abililty of a given genotype, bodily processes and behaviors. like natural selection
define morphological and physiological characters
relative competitive ability of a given genotype (the genetic makeup of an individual) as determined by the individual’s innate body form (morphological characters), bodily processes (physiological characters), and behaviors (behavioral characters).
what are food plots?managment technique
Food plots are plantings meant to supplement an animal’s natural food sources or attract animals for viewing. not a very valid management technique. have to cover 10% of wooded lands to make a difference which is very expensive. no substitute for native vegitation. used for recriational hunting also.
not legal to hunt in food plots
mitigation? management technique
concept used when negative impacts to the environment caused by development in a sensitive area cannot be avoided or minimized.
Mitigation strives to offset the destructive nature of development on wildlife habitats by improving a degraded habitat or creating a new one to replace the habitat destroyed
Common areas that require mitigation from impacts are wetlands or habitat supporting listed species
Minimization of Impacts? management
Landscaping with native plant species around buildings and other developed sites may create habitat islands that would facilitate the movement of individuals of some species between undeveloped areas.
carefully plan and evaluate building of stuff for environmental reasons
Opening? management technique
Areas typically at earlier successional stages than the surrounding habitats. For example, areas where trees are expected to dominate the natural vegetative cover, but shrubs or herbaceous plants are the dominant species.Openings are important for wildlife species as they allow for forage production closer to the ground where there is more access for eating, and provide cover for nesting and refuge from predators.
corridor? management technique
Wildlife corridors can connect isolated patches of habitat. Corridors linking fragmented patches of habitat will be important for the perpetuation of large-ranging wildlife species. These linkages are important to allow animals access to additional habitats they may require for survival. Corridors may link otherwise isolated wildlife populations and thereby prevent genetic isolation of those groups of individuals.Potential risks associated with corridors include the increased probability of transmitting diseases among populations and easier access for predators.
when you restore an area to it natural form
exotic species control? management technique
Exotic animals introduce diseases to which native species have no immunity and compete with native wildlife for available, and often limited, resources. Exotic species may have no natural predators in the systems they invade, which can result in exponential growth patterns.
control burning? management technique
like in forestry.Control burning benefits wildlife by setting back succession and stimulating new plant growth.
population estimates? management technique
used to understand the population growth and track the population trends. for an estimate to be valid all assupmtion of the method used used to generate must be met.
types of popultaion estimates?
call counts-Used to estimate dove and quail populations, call count estimates are based on a knowledge of home range size and the assumption that only male birds are calling. This method requires a set route to be monitored with listening points established for a set period of time. Some species of non-game birds can also be studied using their response to a taped call.
track counts-Track counts can be useful in following trends in deer and to a lesser degree, turkey. An established trail is cleared of all tracks, then left alone for a set period of time. The tracker then follows the trail, recording the number of times a particular animal species crosses the trail. A population estimate can then be calculated with factors such as known area covered, total area, and number viewed.
A method used to count the number of eggs or chicks in eagle nests, this type of survey is also used during the winter for counting manatees. in areas where the overstory is not dense, deer, antelope, and other herbivores can be counted. Aerial surveillance of transect lines is also used in estimating waterfowl numbers. Spotlight Counts. This is a technique using the eye shine of animals spotted with a light at night to estimate population trends with known coverage and total acreage. Spotlight counts are used primarily with deer and alligators.
area stimates- Transects can be used to assess population trends and estimates, recording either the animal or the sign. This may include flushing number and distance from birds, and gopher tortoise burrow counts. Quadrats are generally used to count a specific type of sign, like pellet groups for deer or rabbits
Bait Site Surveys and/or Scent Stations-These methods require baiting the desired species to a location and counting the number of individuals visiting the site. The counting can be done manually or with the use of cameras. This technique has been used with a variety of species including deer, bear, mink, bobcat, and turkey.
sex and age-have to capture animal to count population.
different research techniques?
capture and marking
look at the charts about all that stuff
Scat (poop ((dung piles or latrines)) )
Owls make pellets
Feeding (snipped twigs, rooting, peeled pine cones, holes in trees, and stripped plants)
AMERICAN ALLIGATOR (Alligator mississippiensis)
not much change from crestaceous era
broad, rounded snout
dark brown and black coloration
up to 10 feet female, 12 to 16 feet adult male
young gators striped yellow and white bands between the brown.
occupy freshwater wetlands
males vocalize to mark territory and call females
females deeper voiced than males
courtship begins mid march
20-50 eggs laid
alligators make holes that lead to big underground dens
Juvenile alligators eat insects, mollusks, and crustaceans while older animals consume fish, turtles, snakes, birds, mammals, and crustaceans.
Move vegetation with snout, tail.
FLORIDA BLACK BEAR (URSUS AMERICANUS FLORIDANUS)
subspecies of american black bear
Habitat loss is the major reason for the species decline
aka everglades bear
males – 250 to 450 pounds
females – 125 to 250 pounds
females have a blonde V on their chest.
The bears in north Florida prefer hardwood swamps year-round, periodically utilizing surrounding flatwoods.
80% of their diet consists of plant material.
The animal component is largely insects, with a few armadillos and wild hogs thrown in.
food preferences- favorite fruit blueberry, blackberry, and gallberry.
they dont hibernate but they do slow dow during winter, walking hibernation or denning
Pregnant females enter into a hibernation state in mid-December to early January and don’t awaken until late April or early May.
lose up to 25% of their body weight while hibernating.
young are born in January or February,
seven- to eight-month gestation period
2 or 3 cubs
weigh about 12 ounces at birth
remain with the female until they are about 1.5 years old
5 toes front paw, back paw resembles human print
sings of bears-rolled rocks and logs, tracks, poop, clawing trees, scent marker, day beds
BOWFIN (Amia calva)
between two and three feet and weighing 5–10 pounds
looks rather like an eel with long fins and has undulating swimming patterns
live in warm stagant waters
prefer clear water with lots of vegitation
tolerant of mud, silt, and high water temperatures
rise to the water surface and gulp air to augment the oxygen intake from the gills
aka dog fish
classified as sport fish
hard-hitting, excellent fighter
The male bowfin roots a shallow nest in weedy swamp or slough bottom in late spring. The female then deposits the eggs. The male fertilizes them and guards the nest and fry (the recently hatched fish) until the fingerlings can fend for themselves.
BROWN PELICAN (Pelecanus occidentalis
Pelican have whitish yellow head as adult, brown as child.
coastal birds, nest in colonies near ground or low trees, nest made of branches, twigs, steal materials from neighbors.
2-3 eggs, hatch in 4 weeks or so.
birth – in two weeks begin getting pin feathers. stay in nest until fledging.
pelicans have fish diet: parents puke for young, until they can catch their own.
Their skulls have reinforced sutures, and they have air sacs in their breasts. – helps with diving. The birds dive from 10 to 50 feet above the water when prey is sighted. The impact of the bird hitting the water actually stuns the fish, allowing the pelican to scoop it up
fly together in line a few in. above water
many still endangered.
Birds eating pesticide-laden fish were affected by the thinning of their eggshells and could not effectively incubate their eggs. As a result, species numbers plummeted.
After federal laws banned DDT in 1972, pelicans began to make a slow comeback
boats and fishing line disturb this creature
COTTON MOUSE (Peromyscus gossypinus
One of most abundant mammals in Florida
Key Largo has rare cotton mouse species
Good swimmers and climbers.
prefer small grains and seeds to green food.
Cotton mice have a long breeding season, from late August until early May. Litter sizes average three to four young, and a female may raise four or more litters a year. The young are naked and blind at birth. Their ears open in five or six days at the same time as their teeth are beginning to erupt. Their eyes open in about 13 days, and shortly after that they begin to eat solid foods. They are weaned by 20–25 days
It has six tubercles on each rear foot which helps to distinguish it from the Florida mouse, which only has five tubercles.
COYOTE (Canis latrans)
medium-sized, dog-like carnivore
humans made coyotes relocate past the mississippi river
as well as the extermination of wolves
they howl most frequent at dusk or dawn and are often answered by another coyote miles away.
typically hunt alone – will have howling parties occasionally. after they kill prey, they disband.
will eat anything.
Mate in spring,sometimes mate for life.
5 or 6 young after 2 months gestation, baby eyes open at 9 days. both parents feed babies their tasty puke at 2 weeks.
Wolves were coyotes’ only natural predators. Their extermination leaves the coyotes with no natural predators except man.
It has an arrow-shaped head which is much larger than its neck, and a set of rattles at the end of its tail
largest and most dangerous snake in north america.
about 6 to 8 feet long, 4 to 5 pounds
live in hollow logs under palmetto root.
good swimmers eat warm-blooded animals, mainly rabbits, squirrels, rats, mice, and birds
ambush predator, will wait motionless for a week to strike.
needlelike fangs and poison sacs
The venom is a complex of proteins — some neurotoxins and some hemotoxins.
The rattle is a series of interlocking segments that knock against each other when the tail is vibrated. The rattle increases by one each time the skin is shed. Rattle breaks over time, so cannot be used to age the snake
birth to 9–15 live young between July and October. August is the most common month for diamondbacks to have young in Florida.
live to age 20
numbers decrease because of habitat loss, habitat fragmentation, and both indiscriminate and discriminate killings. Some snakes are taken for their skin and/or meat. Others are taken because of the perceived threat to the public. The real threat to public safety is low.
FLORIDA SCRUB JAY (Aphelocoma coerulescens coerulescens)
restricted to Oak dominated habitats in FL associated with old coastal dunes or paleodunes.
population is rapidly declining in the past 100 years, nearing extirpation.
same size as blue jay
most important food: acorn
others include insects, arthropods, small vertebrates (tree frogs, lizards, and small snakes), berries, and seeds.
Birds forage independently in close proximity to each other. One bird often serves as a sentinel and warns feeding birds of approaching predators.
Live in happy family
nest from march to june
Nests are constructed of twigs in dense, low to mid-height shrubs. The usual clutch size is three or four eggs.
Three is the average number of young fledged; however, mortality of newly fledged birds is high — 65%.
population loss is due to typical problems – habitat loss, degradation etc boring.
GOPHER TORTOISE (Gopherus polyphemus)
1 of 4 tortoises in north america
only species east of the Mississippi
restricted to areas of sandy soil with a herbaceous understory and open canopy.
medium size. broad head, short tail
not have webbed feet and its shell is not hinged
stiff, flattened forelimbs used during burrow excavation
Adults are usually 9–11 inches long and weigh 8–10 pounds.
domed shell range from light tan to gray
Hatchlings are yellow-orange, less than two inches long, and soft-shelled for several days
not reach sexual maturity until they are 10–15 years old.
known to live 40–60 years and may live up to 150 years
estimated that only 1–3% of the young which hatch live beyond two years of age.
herbivores- eat Broad-leafed plants and grasses are their primary food sources, but they also consume fruits and berries and small amounts of organic debris, insects, and carrion
make burrows to regulate body temperature
burrows also humid which prevents desiccation
other animals also use the burrows and they are known as commensals
have a defined social structure with dominant males.
They have courtship displays (head bobbing and positioning) and actively defend their territories
breeding from February and lasting into September; the peak period is May to June
lay eggs in sunny happy sandy place
average clutch size is six and ranges from 3 to 11. Incubation periods are between 80 and 110 days.
breed every other year Gopher tortoises from central and north Florida will hibernate for varying periods of time. At the southern end of their hibernation range, they may come out to forage when daytime temperatures exceed 70 degrees.
do nice things for community: seed dispersal of herbaceous plants, nutrient recycling in the soil, and creation of underground habitats for many species
most effective conservation effort mitigation banking which charges developers a fee for destroying gopher tortoises. These moneys are combined to purchase large land holdings managed for gopher tortoises.tortoise relocations have also been used as a conservation measure
Several specific diseases can be spread between different populations, potentially causing a die-off in both populations
GREATER YELLOW-LEGS (Totanus melanoleucus)
tall, long-beaked shorebird 13–15 inches long.gray with brown streaks, and it has long yellow legs which trail behind when it flies
aka tattlers or telltales due to their talkative habits and vigilance to warn of approaching danger
feed on mudflats, in grassy ponds, or in shallow water
can feed in deeper waters than other birds because of long sexy legs
diet: fond of minnows, but also eat insects and other small invertebrate animals.fond of minnows, but also eat insects and other small invertebrate animals.
Their nests are no more than depressions in the moss, with no other nesting materials added.
The male stays close to the nest while the female incubates. He will distract and fend off intruders, making it extremely difficult to find the female or the nest.
Four buff colored eggs with brown blotches is the usual clutch size. Nesting usually occurs in late May
not found in large concentrations
GULF STURGEON (Acioenser oxyrhynchus desotoi)
subspecies of the Atlantic sturgeon
found in Florida waters
primitive fish with naked skin embedded with bony scutes
used to be common in gulf coast estuaries however over fishing + damming off rivers has caused severe population shortage.
can grow to 300 centimeters in length and weigh hundreds of pounds. They can live in excess of 60 years
have barbels which assist in them in feeding on small, bottom-dwelling invertebrates.
are andromous (a saltwater species requiring freshwater for breeding
Peak migration usually occurs in May, with a secondary peak in October. triggered by water temperature and when people pee in the river
spawn in shallow waters with a bottom substrate of mixed sands and gravel.
spawing sites endagered by nitrates which cause increased algal growth, which can lower the dissolved oxygen levels in spawning grounds, reducing the viability of the site.
excellent keystone species to monitor the health of an entire river system because they stay in a localized estuary area and do not intermix with breeding populations from other drainages
hosts include raccoons, gray foxes, and coyotes. Skunks, red foxes, bears, and otters are also known to be susceptible.
caused by a virus
virus attacks epithelial cells primarily in the respiratory and digestive tracts, and eyes. Common symptoms include coughing, sneezing, watery eyes (with or without discharge), and diarrhea. The nervous system may also be damaged, causing the animals to loose the fear of humans and to have intermittent convulsions, tremors, or chewing fits
after a while can cause pneumonia, suffer from eye and nasal discharges, become emaciated, develop cut or bleeding feet, and develop gastroenteritis. The disease can be fatal.
transmitted by contact with infected animals or their excretions.
named for the town of Old Lyme, Connecticut
Humans and a few other mammals can contract the disease, usually from ticks. Other blood-feeding arthropods may also be able to transmit the disease.
the deer tick, is associated with lyme disease,
variety of hosts including reptiles, birds, and small mammals.
Symptoms from lyme disease are varied; however, the typical bite will have a skin rash develop around it. The individual may also have flu-like symptoms. Arthritic symptoms can occur after the bite appears to be healed. The disease is treatable with antibiotics;
foxes, skunks, raccoons, and bats are considered the main reservoirs.
Some species, like rodents, opossums, and birds, seem to have a natural resistance to rabies.
caused by a virus that attacks the nervous system. It has an incubation period (species-specific) when symptoms are masked; however, once the virus invades the brain, clinical symptoms are exhibited. When the virus reaches the brain, it also invades the salivary glands, making the victim contagious. Rabies is transmitted through saliva, generally in association with bites
There are two forms of rabies — dumb and furious. Dumb rabies is characterized by lethargy, aimless wandering, weakness of the legs, and lack of awareness. Furious rabies is characterized by violent attacks on moving objects and self mutilation.
Endangered Species Act
The intent of this act is to protect fish, wildlife, and plant species facing extinction by encouraging the development and maintenance of conservation programs designed to increase population numbers to a point where the species can be removed from the protected status. The law specifically makes it illegal to “take” listed species. To take means to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or attempt to engage in any such conduct. However, there are provisions to take included under specific permits. Such provisions are important for some situations in which conflicts arise between wildlife and human populations.
Migratory Bird Treaty Act
This law makes it illegal to take non-game migratory birds or parts, including nests. There are provisions to take included under specific permits. This act covers almost all native bird species.
Bald Eagle Act
This law makes it illegal to take a bald or golden eagle
Marine Mammal Protection Act
This law protects only the marine mammals. It contains minimal language for the protection of the mammal’s habitat. The Secretary of Commerce may grant a permit to take a marine mammal.
Clean Water Act
The intent of this law is to require a permit for the discharge of pollutants into waterways. It also addresses providing funds for the development of wastewater treatment facilities. It was based on engineering principles and not on types of, amounts of, or ecosystem tolerance for the pollutants.
Clean Air Act
This law sets standards for air health, provides money for research, and protects clean areas against significant deterioration. The act sets new emission standards, but the regulation of existing pollutants is left up to the states. There are provisions for enforcement and compliance, although it is basically left up to the states.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Regulatory Program
This program is based on directives from the Clean Water Act and the River and Harbor Act that require permitting for anyone desiring to place dredge or fill material in waters of the United States or make any type of changes to navigable waters.
This law, established in 1937, placed an excise tax on firearms and associated equipment. This tax money is set aside specifically for the management, research, administration of, and acquisition of wildlife and their habitats. These funds were used to purchase many of the state and national wildlife refuges as well as to provide minimal staff to manage these areas.
This act, established in 1950, placed a similar excise tax on fishing equipment. These moneys are earmarked for fisheries management, purchase, administration, and research
This 1984 act amends the Dingle-Johnson Act by broadening its scope to allow the taxing of other items used when fishing, such as boats, gas for marine use, depth finders, etc. Funds are still allotted as stated in the previous act.