Animal Ecology (Biol 321)

Great Lakes Campus - Summer Session I

Course Description

Interrelationships between animals and their biotic and physical environments, emphasizing animal population and community dynamics. A field course that centers on the ecology of northern Michigan fauna from a field biology perspective with an emphasis on stewardship. Included are individual student projects. Prerequisite: one year of introductory science. (4-credits) Field.

Professor: Dr. Matt Ingle
Meets: Wednesday & Friday

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Knowledge Gained

  • Principles of animal ecology, including information on distribution, habitat, movement, reproduction, and behavior
  • Understanding of population and community dynamics
  • Ability to read and understand scientific literature on animal ecology
  • Ability to develop and conduct hypothesis-driven research

Skills Developed

  • Identification of northern vertebrates, including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fishes
  • Use of capture methods and indicies to assess population size, community diversity, and multi-community similarities
  • Experience with the Grinnell system for field journaling
  • Ability to conduct field research, prepare a research poster and present scientific results

Field Experiences

  • Wilderness State Park
  • Lake Skegemog
  • Hartwick Pines State Park
  • South Higgins Lake State Park - "Big Day" bird watching competition
  • Night search for nocturnal animals
  • Bog & Forest Study site - Daily sampling of small mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and birds



Interested in learning more about Animal Ecology?

Check out this blog!

Courses That Change Your Life: Animal Ecology