Microsuccession Lab - Biology Essay Example

Microsuccession Lab

 

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Introduction: Succession is the progressive replacement of earlier biological communities with others over time. It entails a process of ecological change, whereby new biotic communities replace old ones, culminating in a stable ecological system known as a climax community. In a climax community, climate, soil, and the characteristics of the local biota (the sum of all plants and animals) are all suited to one another. Microsuccession occurs similarly but on a smaller or “micro” level.

 

Purpose: To identify some common pond water organisms and observe mirosuccession

 

Materials

glass jars with perforated lids

mark pencils

microscope slides

cover slips

medicine droppers

 

Procedure: (worked individually)

Get water sample in the jar from the campus pond
Fill the jar about 3A full with water and then place a few grass twigs in the jar.
Observe the sample of pond water with you eyes alone. Notice any organisms that move.
Identify, Diagram, Label organisms observed.
With the dropper, transfer two drops of water from you’re your sample of pond water to a slide and apply a cover slip.
Observe under low power of your compound microscope.
Reduce the light by adjusting the diaphragm so that the thin-walled protozoan’s and algae cells stand out clearly. Move the slide to bring all areas into view.
Identify, Diagram, Label organisms observed.
Switch to high power to observe organisms too small to study under low power. Adjust light as necessary.
Identify, Diagram, Label organisms observed.
Prepare another slide with two drops of water from the bottom  of the sample of pond water. Try to get drops containing bits of organic matter.
If you find no organisms., make a new slide, draw and label any organisms you have not already identified.
Repeat your observations for the next three weeks. Record any changes in the size of micropopulations. At the end of three weeks submit a written report on microsuccession.

 

 

Observations:

 

Holophrya

Bottom Half of Jar

8-22-2007

4-5 observed

 

Nephrocytium

Bottom Half of Jar

8-27-2007

2 observed

 

 

 

 

 

Paramoccium

Top half of Jar

9-10-07

25 – 30 observed

 

Top half

9-17-07

5-10 observed

Bottom half

11 observed

 

Top Half

9-24-07

2 observed

Bottom half

5 observed

 

 

Dictyosphacrium

Bottom half

9-10-07

1 observed

 

Chilomonas

Bottom Half

9-10-07

1 observed

 

Cladophora

Top Half

9-17-07

1 observed

 

Apsilus

Bottom Hall

9-17-07

12 observed

 

Top Half

9-24-07

5 observed

Bottom Half

15 observed

 

Diglena

9-24-07

Bottom half

1 observed

 

Echinosphaerlla

Bottom half

9-24-07

1 observed

 

Pterodina

Bottom half

9-24-07

2 observed

 

Glococystis

Top half

9-24-07

1 observed

 

Chydorus

Bottom half

9-24-07

1 observed

 

Discussion and Conclusions:

How are the algae and other organisms in pond water dependent on one another? Explain why this is not surprising. How would you explain qualitative and quantitative changes in organisms in the jar at the end of 4 weeks

 

Organisms within an environment, even a micro-environment are dependent on each for food, protection, essential nutrients.  Each type of organism in pond water has a specific purpose, and acts a producer. Similarly, each type of organism has specific energy requirements, and acts as a consumer.  For example algae grows and is used to feed the organisms which were observed in this lab.  In addition, this organism do not just feed on algae but act to control the growth of algae and ensure that it does not grow uncontrollably.  In return the amount of available algae maintains the growth and reproduction of organisms.  Algae also helps to produce or “cycle” essential nutrients into the environment like nitrogen, and oxygen.  Organisms which appear at the top of the jar need immediate access to oxygen and sunlight.  Organisms which are found in the bottom half of the jar needs less sunlight to survive. Organisms will migrate to the place in the environment which is most suitable to them.  This is why you seen a change in the number of Apsilus and Paramoccium.  Once the food is depleted in their area they move to an area with more food.  Once the food is gone completely they will die and numbers decrease.

 

Organisms at the bottom half of the jar will continue to decrease because their food and energy supply will decrease and eventually deplete completely.  At four weeks and after there will be steady decline because the nutrients which come from the natural environment will not be present.  In addition, the natural cleaning of the environment will not occur.

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