ModelBEST Module 3 - Predator/Prey – Survival Behaviors

Posted October 4, 2020 by wellina
Predator/Prey  model still

Original author

Stacey Carman and Bob Coulter

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Animals utilize their instincts and adaptability to survive, but there are other variables that occur like over-population and/or disease that can alter the balance. In this unit, students will have the opportunity to modify a model to try to keep the ecosystem balanced for a longer period of time which will allow animals a better chance of survival.

This model is a simple ecosystem of grass, rabbits, and coyotes. Rabbits and coyotes wander randomly. Coyotes gain energy from eating rabbits, which gain energy from eating grass. Grass doesn’t die, but just gives its energy to the rabbits and then goes back to 0 energy (grass gradually gains energy over time, whereas rabbits and coyotes lose energy as they move). Both rabbits and coyotes reproduce if they get enough energy and die if they run out. A graph shows the population sizes of rabbits and coyotes over time.

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