SC.912.L.17.8

Recognize the consequences of the losses of biodiversity due to catastrophic events, climate changes, human activity, and the introduction of invasive, non-native species.
General Information
Subject Area: Science
Grade: 912
Body of Knowledge: Life Science
Idea: Level 3: Strategic Thinking & Complex Reasoning
Standard: Interdependence -

A. The distribution and abundance of organisms is determined by the interactions between organisms, and between organisms and the non-living environment.

B. Energy and nutrients move within and between biotic and abiotic components of ecosystems via physical, chemical and biological processes.

C. Human activities and natural events can have profound effects on populations, biodiversity and ecosystem processes.

Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved

Related Courses

This benchmark is part of these courses.
2000310: Biology 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000320: Biology 1 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000330: Biology 2 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))
2000430: Biology Technology (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000370: Botany (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000380: Ecology (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2001340: Environmental Science (Specifically in versions: 2015 and beyond (current))
2000440: Genetics Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2002440: Integrated Science 3 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2002450: Integrated Science 3 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000390: Limnology (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018 (course terminated))
2002500: Marine Science 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2002510: Marine Science 1 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000410: Zoology (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2000800: Florida's Preinternational Baccalaureate Biology 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
7920015: Access Biology 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))
2000315: Biology 1 for Credit Recovery (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2002445: Integrated Science 3 for Credit Recovery (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2020 (course terminated))
7920040: Fundamental Integrated Science 3 (Specifically in versions: 2013 - 2015, 2015 - 2017 (course terminated))
2001341: Environmental Science Honors (Specifically in versions: 2016 and beyond (current))
2001330: Meteorology Honors (Specifically in versions: 2016 - 2019, 2019 and beyond (current))

Related Access Points

Alternate version of this benchmark for students with significant cognitive disabilities.
SC.912.L.17.In.4: Recognize possible changes in an ecosystem (biodiversity) that can result from natural catastrophic events, changes in climate, and human activity.
SC.912.L.17.Su.4: Recognize changes in living things (biodiversity) that can result from natural catastrophic events and human activity.
SC.912.L.17.Pa.4: Recognize actions that are harmful to living things.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Lesson Plans

Bonefish Genetics:

Recent research has shown that bonefish (Albula vulpes) found all around the Florida Keys, The Bahamas, and many other places across the Atlantic, Gulf, and Caribbean are genetically related. In this lesson, students will learn about what it means to be “genetically related,” how genetics are determined, and how this could change how we manage bonefish populations locally and internationally. They will work together in to create a “model treaty” that protects bonefish between countries.

Type: Lesson Plan

Gr 9-12 Adaptations in Everglades Ecosystems, Lesson 1: Living on the Edge :

Students will be able to distinguish among the types of mangroves common to Florida and understand their zonation within the coastal community. They will also be able to describe how mangroves, as an essential biotic component, help stabilize the coastline and protect it from erosion and storm surges. Lastly, students will provide argumentation supported by evidence for the protection of mangroves. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Gr 9-12 Environmental Factors of the Everglades, Lesson 1: The Heart of a Watershed :

In small groups, students build a model landscape to illustrate the uniqueness of the Kissimmee-Lake Okeechobee-Everglades (K-O-E) watershed and use a model to demonstrate how alterations have affected it.

Type: Lesson Plan

Helpful Herbivores:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text that explains how a smaller species of organisms are filling a niche of larger organisms that have been reduced due to overfishing and disease. These smaller organisms have been shown to reduce algal communities that can lead to the destruction of crucial coral reefs. This discovery may have large, beneficial impacts on endangered coral communities around the world. This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes use of a seed discussion organizer, a vocabulary handout, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, sample answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

ComBATing Extinction:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text intended to support reading in the content area. The article explains how Caribbean bat species are uniquely suited for studying the consequences of extinction. By reading this article, students will get a better understanding of geographic isolation and speciation, which are major themes when discussing the theory of evolution. In addition, students will gain an understanding of the devastating effects human impact can have on populations of species.

Type: Lesson Plan

Will We See More White Nose Syndrome in Bats?:

In this lesson, students will read an informational text that discusses the spread of White Nose Syndrome in North American bats and how bat colonies are being affected in both size and number. The article also provides a comparison between European and North American bat colonies suffering with this disease. This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, and answer keys.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bad News for Starfish:

In this lesson plan, students will analyze an informational text intended to support reading in the content area. The National Science Foundation article discusses research on the effects of the Sea Star Associated Densovirus, a virus devastating sea star populations. The article further explains the implication of the virus for the tidal ecosystems of the Pacific West Coast. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Importance of a Baboon's Birthday:

In this lesson, students will read an article from the National Science Foundation that discusses how a drought affected the savannas of southern Kenya during 2009. It further addresses how baboons are affected later in life based on when they are born and the social status they are born into. Based on the research on baboons, the implications on human health are also discussed in the latter portion of the article. This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Loss of Sea Ice Leaves Polar Bears in the Cold:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text intended to support reading in the content area. The article showcases recent research into the declining Arctic sea ice and its effect on polar bear populations. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Numerous options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bee Faithful! :

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text that addresses a study that confirms the impact of removing just one bumblebee species from an ecosystem. The text describes how removing just one bumblebee species from an ecosystem causes less effective pollination and lower seed production. Bumblebees, as most bees do, stick with one species of flower until it's finished blooming. Scientists have found that when one bee species is removed it causes the remaining bee species to "cheat" on their original flower species. This causes a decrease in pollination and in seed production. This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Looking for the Loris:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text intended to support reading in the content area. The article discusses the research and efforts by scientists to save the slow loris from extinction. It discusses the complexity of conservation today and details how there are many different layers that need to be addressed on this issue. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bees Endangered for First Time:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text that addresses a recent listing of yellow-faced bees on the endangered list. This is the first time any type of bee has ever been listed as endangered. The text describes how the yellow-faced bee population in Hawaii has been decimated by invasive species, habitat loss, and climate change. The text also describes an innovative approach by researchers to help bring these bees back from the verge of extinction. This lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Wiping Out Invasive Predators in New Zealand:

In this lesson, students will read an article from National Geographic that discusses the plan of the New Zealand government to eliminate invasive predators from the country by 2050. The article further goes on to discuss the effects the predators have had on the native wildlife. This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a vocabulary handout, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. 

 

Type: Lesson Plan

Transport of Invasive Species:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes the effects the Panama Canal expansion may have on the number of invasive species introduced to the East Coast and Gulf Coast of the United States. The article explains how ballast water and wet surface areas are the two ways the invasive species can travel from port to port. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Helping the Honey Bee!:

In this lesson, students will analyze an article that discusses the problem of declining honey bee populations in the United States and lists the possible factors involved. The text then describes the study on African honey bees to determine if there are genetic or physiological causes in their positive response to the Varroa parasite. Researchers are hoping the data they gather will help them improve breeding programs or management practices in U.S. bee populations. This lesson plan is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Winter Ecologists Explore Effects of Climate Change:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text that addresses the consequences of climate change on living organisms in snow ecosystems, particularly those who live in the subnivium beneath the snow's surface. The text describes a new field of researchers called winter ecologists and their findings that show how climate change is causing lighter snows in some areas, diminishing the amount of insulation in the subnivium that many living organisms need to survive the winter. This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Lionfish: Invasive Predators!:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text intended to support reading in the content area. The text concerns lionfish, an invasive species in the Atlantic, and the environmental and economic damage the species threatens. The lesson plan includes text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Ideas for extending the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Humans: The Leading Cause of Extinction:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text selected to support reading in the content area. The article describes how wildlife is impacted by natural events and by humans, focusing on scientific data gathered in the Caribbean (specifically Abaco Island). It explains how humans impact the populations of species in ecosystems and why it is important for people to understand these interactions. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Numerous options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Flexing Their Mussels:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text examining scientists' studies of freshwater mussels in an attempt to develop methods for saving threatened species. Students will learn of the researchers' hope to be able to use other species that cohabitate local ecosystems to restore the threatened species. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Numerous options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Methods of Protecting Coral Reefs:

This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. Students will read a short but complex article that describes the expansion of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument (a type of marine protected area) and the benefits of MPAs. The article identifies threats to coral reefs and how creating an MPA can help the coral reefs within this protected area and reefs in adjoining areas as well. The text provides some background information on how similar programs have helped other protected reefs near the Philippines, and both local and global threats to coral reef ecosystems are referenced. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Be Alert - I Am Invasive!:

Through schoolyard exploration, class discussion, and group projects, students will investigate common invasive species and their impact to Florida ecosystems. Students will recognize the impact various invasive species have on biodiversity and the consequences of the subsequent loss of biodiversity.

Type: Lesson Plan

Disentangling Food Webs:

In this lesson, students create a food web using information about a group of non-existent species. They will use the food web to create food chains and a population pyramid that will show the flow of energy through the food web. Finally, they will explore how changing the population size of one species affects other species, often with unpredicted results.

Type: Lesson Plan

Invasive Species - Air Potato Round Up:

Students will be introduced to invasive species in the beginning of the lesson via YouTube video and guiding questions. The students will use digital and print media to explore (identify, describe and predict) the loss of biodiversity in several ecosystems due to the introduction of invasive exotic species.

The teacher/students will continue to identify and describe invasive species in a second YouTube video and a graphic organizer. The teacher will supervise students in small groups during this phase of the lesson.

The final product for students will be to complete a poster advertising a future "Air Potato Round Up" event sponsored by the local US Army Corp of Engineers.

Students will be guided by a rubric and have supplemental resources to access information for the poster project.

Type: Lesson Plan

Measuring Biodiversity :

Purpose: To compare the species diversity of an area with high human impact vs. less human impact.

Students will complete an investigation which will allow them to use the Simpson's diversity index formula to evaluate and compare biodiversity around their school campus. Students will draw conclusions based on their data set.

This activity can has many applicable extensions based on student needs and interests. It also can be easily modified to fit certain time constraints, or physical limitations on varying school campuses.

Resource includes lab sheet which provides instructions for students to complete the investigation, worked example of the Simpson's Index formula, space for students to record their findings at the various investigation sites, as well as apply their data to the formula. Students will also draw conclusions based on their data set.

Type: Lesson Plan

Let's Pollinate Biodiversity:

This is lesson introduces real-world examples of the consequences of the losses of biodiversity through a TED talk, detailed discussion, and group work.

Type: Lesson Plan

Sea Turtle Sex and Climate Change:

In this lesson students will examine how changes in an ecosystem result from environmental factors specifically demonstrating the consequences of climate change on sea turtles. The lesson is in four parts: 1) a fact finding/research component; 2) a group discussion and student presentation; 3) a multi-media component; and 4) a laboratory activity.

Type: Lesson Plan

Save Our Dunes:

Save Our Dunes is a literature-based research project suitable for 9-12 marine science or environmental science students. The lesson requires approximately 160 min. as well as computers/ internet access/ a printer. Students are guided through a series of brainstorming activities about the types of natural events and human activities that could affect dune ecosystems.

Students discuss the importance of dunes and what might happen if some dune organisms disappeared. Students then research background texts and use the research to create and defend a unique dune management plan.

Type: Lesson Plan

Population Dynamics:

This 7E lesson plan is broken down into 3 lessons used to teach high school students in grades 9-12 about the characteristics used to describe populations. There are inquiry based and project based inquiry activities incorporated within the lesson. Students will also learn the difference between exponential and logistic growth by doing hands -on activities. A Power Point is used to guide the activities, and learning.

Type: Lesson Plan

Florida Panthers and Wildlife Corridors:

Students will learn about the Florida Panther, threats to it's survival and the role of wildlife corridors as an attempt to reduce roadway fatalities. Students will participate in a game simulating panther crossings, learn about panthers from a guest speaker or teacher, and participate in a mock town hall meeting evaluating the construction of wildlife corridors.

Type: Lesson Plan

Coral Reefs in Acid - What is Ocean Acidification?:

The goal of this lesson plan is for students to be able to conduct mini-experiments that demonstrate what ocean acidification is and how it affects marine organisms. Students will perform mini-experiments and observe diagrams to help generate a definition of what ocean acidification is, why it is occurring, and how humans can reduce their impact.

Type: Lesson Plan

Preserving Our Marine Ecosystems:

The focus of this MEA is oil spills and their effect on the environment. In this activity, students from a fictitious class are studying about the effects of an oil spill on marine ecosystems and have performed an experiment in which they were asked to try to rid a teaspoon of corn oil from a baking pan filled with two liters of water as thoroughly as possible in a limited timeframe and with limited resources. By examining, analyzing, and evaluating experimental data related to resource usage, disposal, and labor costs, students must face the tradeoffs that are involved in trying to preserve an ecosystem when time, money, and resources are limited.

Type: Lesson Plan

Cleaning Up Your Act:

Cleaning Up Your Act Model Eliciting Activity (MEA) provides students with a real world engineering problem in which they must work as a team to design a procedure to select the best material for cleaning up an oil spill. The main focus of this MEA is to recognize the consequences of a catastrophic event, and understand the environmental and economical impact based on data analysis. Students will conduct individual and team investigations in order to arrive at a scientifically sound solution to the problem.

Type: Lesson Plan

Genetically Modified Foods:

Using short videos, articles and a scavenger hunt, students will learn the process of genetically modifying crops and understand the benefits and drawbacks of genetically modified foods.

Type: Lesson Plan

Invasive or Not?:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text that discusses new evidence regarding the status of the Arctic ground squirrel. The species was previously thought to be an invasive species on Chirikof Island off the coast of Alaska, but new evidence calls this belief into question. The lesson plan includes a vocabulary note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Invasive Species:

This resource provides a lesson plan, a student assignment, and a power point presentation on invasive species with examples.

Type: Lesson Plan

Lesson Study Resource Kit

Exploring Diversity and Evolution: A Lesson Study Resource Kit for grades 9-12:

This lesson study resource kit is designed to support lesson study teams in developing a unit of instruction for students in grades 9-12 on the topic of diversity and evolution.

Type: Lesson Study Resource Kit

Model Eliciting Activity (MEA) STEM Lesson

The Price of Success: Wolf Population Management:

In this MEA lesson, students will come up with a strategy to choose among proposals for managing wolf populations in the state of Wyoming. They will make an evidence-based recommendation to the state based on the costs and benefits of maintaining a healthy wolf population outside of Yellowstone National Park.

Type: Model Eliciting Activity (MEA) STEM Lesson

Original Student Tutorial

Biodiversity and Non-native Species:

See how non-native species can impact ecosystem biodiversity to create problems for native species in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Perspectives Video: Experts

Bycatch and the Impact on Biodiversity:

Dean Grubbs of Florida State Universisty, discusses the impact bycatch has on ocean life.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Why did we throw it away?:

Dean Grubbs explains how different types of trash, like plastics, ends up in the ocean and how they become a detriment to marine life.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Shark Population Analysis and Policy:

Enric Cortes discuses shark population data collected and the use of data to influence policy decisions.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Habitat Changes in Related to Phosphorous Pollution in the Everglades:

Watch as Dr. Stephen E. Davis, III explains how excess phosphorous pollution is impacting the Everglades.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Periphyton in the Everglades:

Periphyton plays several vital roles in the Everglades. Watch now to find out more!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Protecting Biodiversity in At-Risk Ecosystems:

Dr. Bill McShea from the Smithsonian Institution discusses how he works to ameliorate negative human impacts on the enviroment to maintain healthy biodiversity.

This video was created in collaboration with the Okaloosa County SCIENCE Partnership, including the Smithsonian Institution and Harvard University.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Measuring Biodiversity to Evaluate Human Impact:

Humans impact the environment in a number of ways. Learn more about how we interact with nature!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Protect our Fisheries from Invasive Species:

Lionfish and other species are roaring past our native populations. Learn more.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Graphs Help Identify Cost-Effective Sea Turtle Conservation Strategies:

This marine biologist discusses her use of graphical representations to help determine the most cost-effective management strategies for sea turtle conservation.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Perspectives Video: Teaching Ideas

The Importance of Sea Grass Beds:

Alicia Brown describes the role of sea grass beds in the environment.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Invasive Species Research Projects:

Listen in as this teacher explains how students can do their own research to can help them understand invasive species and the dangers they pose to an ecosystem.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Building Websites about Endangered Species:

Technology and web design can help students communicate information about an endangered species.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Professional Development

Yosemite Burning:

This tutorial is designed to help secondary science teachers learn how to integrate literacy skills within their curriculum. This tutorial focuses on evaluating the reasoning and evidence of an argumentative claim. The focus on literacy across content areas is designed to help students independently build knowledge in different disciplines through reading and writing.

Type: Professional Development

Teaching Ideas

Polar Opposites-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will be able to understand the effects of introducing geographically non-native species to a new environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

Endangered Species Worldwide:

Students will be able to use a world map or globe to locate the distribution of at least 10 endangered species and describe the current threats and conservation efforts concerning one endangered species of animal or plant.

Type: Teaching Idea

Manatees on the 'Net-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will use the Internet to determine the population status of the Florida manatee and will use the information to debate the extinction or recovery of the manatee.

Type: Teaching Idea

Lagoon Debate-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Given a common environmental situation, students will research available literature or other resources for more information, and logically argue a viewpoint. They will be able to demonstrate a real-life decision-making process and evaluate its outcome.

Type: Teaching Idea

Fur Seal Survey-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Given a current environmental situation, the student will be able to gather information, organize, analyze, and present data. They will participate in a decision-making process.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resources

The Invasive Squirrel That Wasn't:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. This article describes the discovery of evidence that contradicts the notion that a specific species of squirrel was introduced to an Alaskan ecosystem. It further discusses the implication of the new evidence and challenges the current meaning of invasive species.

Type: Text Resource

These Itsy-Bitsy Herbivores Could Stage a Huge Coral Reef Rescue:

This informational text resource supports reading in the content area. The article implies that human interactions that raise the global temperature (climate change) can have disastrous effects on coral reefs (coral bleaching). The article explains how a discovery of other organisms filling a previously occupied niche may help to rebuild and sustain coral reefs.

Type: Text Resource

Polar Bears Across the Arctic Face Shorter Sea Ice Season:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Polar bears are among the animals most affected by the seasonal and year-to-year decline in Arctic sea ice, because they rely on ice for essential activities such as hunting, traveling, and breeding. A new research study has confirmed this finding.

Type: Text Resource

Born During a Drought: Bad News for Baboons:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article discusses how a drought affected the savanna ecosystem found in southern Kenya during 2009. It further addresses how baboons are affected later in life based on the conditions when they are born and the social status they are born into. Based on the research on baboons, the implications on human health are discussed in the latter portion of the article.

Type: Text Resource

Virus Fingered as Top Suspect in West Coast Sea Star Wasting Disease:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The National Science Foundation article discusses research on the identification and the effects of the Sea Star Associated Densovirus. The article further explains the importance of research on this virus because of its impact on the tidal ecosystems on the Pacific West Coast.

Type: Text Resource

Hibernation Season Over, Will Disease-Ridden Bats Emerge from Caves and Mines This Spring?:

This informational text resource supports reading in the content area. The article discusses the spread of White Nose Syndrome in North American bats and how bat colonies are being affected in both size and number. The article also provides a comparison between European and North American bat colonies suffering with this disease.

Type: Text Resource

Caribbean Bat Species Need 8 Million Years to Recover from Recent Extinction Waves:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article discusses how Caribbean bat species are ideal for understanding the implications of extinction and its effects on species. The article suggests that the geographic isolation of these species helps scientists to understand the causes of extinction and how long species may need to recover from natural and human impact.

Type: Text Resource

New Zealand Announces Plan to Wipe Out Invasive Predators:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The text explains the new Zealand government's plan to eliminate invasive predators from the country by 2050 and the challenges that may be involved in reaching this goal. The article also describes the effects the predators have had on the native wildlife to date.

Type: Text Resource

For the First Time, Bees Declared Endangered in the U.S.:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The text describes how for the first time bees have been declared endangered in the United States. Seven species of Hawaiian yellow-faced bees have been decimated by invasive species and habitat loss and are now federally protected. The text goes on to describe an innovative way scientists want to help the bees.

Type: Text Resource

Panama Canal: Superhighway for Invasive Species?:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article describes the effects the Panama Canal expansion may have on the number of invasive species introduced to the East Coast and Gulf Coast of the United States. The article explains how ballast water and wet surface areas are the two ways the invasive species can travel from port to port.

Type: Text Resource

Protecting the Honey-Bearers:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article discusses the problem of declining honey bee populations in the United States and lists the possible factors involved. The text then describes the study on African honey bees to determine if there are genetic or physiological causes in their response to the Varroa parasite. Researchers are hoping the data they gather will help them improve breeding programs or management practices in U.S. bee populations.

Type: Text Resource

Peering into the Secret World of Life Beneath Winter Snows:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The text describes a new field of researchers called winter ecologists who are examining the effects of warmer winters caused by climate change. The text describes how snow creates an insulating layer for the living organisms below the snow. When that insulating layer is thinner, due to increased global temperatures, the organisms suffer colder temperatures, stress, and even death. Winter ecologists are trying to learn more about this layer, which is called the subnivium, and how organisms are responding to these changes.

Type: Text Resource

Invasive Lionfish Diet Could Impact Native Coral Reef Fishes:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article explains how lionfish, an invasive species in Atlantic waters, is threatening ecosystems there. The voracious diet of the lionfish will likely affect native species and the commercial fishing industry.

Type: Text Resource

Ancient Fossils Show Effect of Humans on Caribbean Wildlife:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article focuses on scientific data gathered in the Caribbean (specifically Abaco Island). The authors describe how wildlife is impacted by natural events and by humans, and why it is important for people to understand these interactions.

Type: Text Resource

Genetics Provide New Hope for Endangered Freshwater Mussels:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article explains the impact of scientists’ studies on a number of freshwater mussel species and their genetic makeup. The intent of the research was to find ways of protecting threatened and endangered species of mussels. The article explains that the genetic similarities of species that cohabitate a river could lead to development of new methods of protecting mussel species.

Type: Text Resource

Good News and Bad News for Coral Reefs:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. Through discussion of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument in the central Pacific, this text offers perspective on how political factors can greatly influence ecology. The article explains some of the benefits of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) like the Marine National Monument, which often include pristine coral reefs and exceptional biodiversity, using the example of MPAs in the Philippines. It also briefly describes global threats to MPAs.

Type: Text Resource

Introduced Species: The Threat to Biodiversity & What Can Be Done:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Invasive species are a global threat to biodiversity for many reasons. This article outlines the scope of the problem, explaining how invasive species are impacting native flora and fauna and offering potential solutions to prevent their spread.

Type: Text Resource

Polar Bears and Climate Change:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Polar bears are highly specialized to living on sea ice in the Arctic including their dependence on two species of seals. Therefore, scientists expect polar bears to be greatly affected by climate changes due to their habitat (reduced sea ice) and prey availability. These effects include increased movement, fewer den areas, and decreased prey access, which are predicted to have a variety of negative consequences on polar bears in the future.

Type: Text Resource

Panel’s Warning on Climate Risk: Worst Is Yet to Come:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes a report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which summarizes the many environmental, climatic, social, and economic effects of global warming that are already occurring and will continue to take place. The report also predicts the environmental and socio-economic effects of climate change that will occur in the upcoming decades, especially those that will affect poorer countries.

Type: Text Resource

Pesticides Spark Broad Biodiversity Loss:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article is about how agricultural pesticides are contributing to the biodiversity loss of invertebrates. Research teams examined streams in broad regions to study the effects of pesticides in those ecosystems. Up to 42% fewer species were discovered in streams that were highly contaminated. In another study, it was found that neonicotinoid insecticides accumulate in the soil at levels that kill soil invertebrates.

Type: Text Resource

The Infinite Struggle Against Invasive Species in the Galapagos:

The Galapagos Islands provide some of the most unique flora and fauna in the world, and the islands have served as a hot spot for modern evolutionary theory, thanks to the work of Charles Darwin. However, the island's unique biodiversity is threatened by invasive species. This article delves into the struggle we face to preserve the species which are native to the islands.

Type: Text Resource

Could the Yosemite Rim Fire Be Ecologically Beneficial?:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The Yosemite Rim Fire was the third largest in California's history. This article explains what made it such a devastating event and what could result from this wildfire. The article addresses ideas of succession, human impact, and ecosystems.

Type: Text Resource

Salamander's Hefty Role in the Ecosystem:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This is a fascinating article about the large role one tiny organism plays in its ecosystem. The author explores the predatory habits of the salamander, how this amphibian can affect the carbon cycle, and the changes that have been taking place in the salamander populations over time.

Type: Text Resource

Invasive Pythons Put Squeeze on Everglades' Animals:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This interesting article about Burmese pythons in the Everglades showcases the effect one invasive species has on a local ecosystem and habitat. This is a great way to discuss invasive species in the classroom and explore the causes and effects on biodiversity.

Type: Text Resource

Will Snakes Inherit the Earth?:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The author discusses the effects that invasive animals can have on an ecosystem. She initially writes about the Burmese python's effect on the Everglades and follows with the effects of other non-native species on native species. Finally, she exposes the reader to the debate about whether something should be done to control invasive species.

Type: Text Resource

Deforestation: Facts, Causes & Effects:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article explains the causes and locations of deforestation and explores the environmental consequences that occur because of the practice.

Type: Text Resource

The Hidden World under Our Feet:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article discusses the contribution that soil biodiversity has to the larger ecosystem. It addresses the consequences of the loss of soil biodiversity resulting from human activity.

Type: Text Resource

Cannibalistic Mantis Invades New Zealand, Eats Natives:

This informational text is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes a species of invasive South African Mantis. These insects have invaded New Zealand and the female of the species makes a habit of eating males that try to mate with them. Scientist are trying to uncover the reason for this attraction to the invasive species.

Type: Text Resource

Reconsidering the Value of Non-Native Species:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes the role (negative and positive) non-native species play in ecosystems.

Type: Text Resource

A Century of Melaleuca Invasion in South Florida:

This informational text is intended to support reading in the content area. This article deals with the invasive exotic species of tree known as melaleuca, which is mainly an issue in Southern Florida and Everglades National Park.

Type: Text Resource

Tutorial

The Case of the Vanishing Honeybees:

In the past decade, the US honeybee population has been decreasing at an alarming and unprecedented rate. While this is obviously bad news for honeypots everywhere, bees also help feed us in a bigger way -- by pollinating our nation's crops. Emma Bryce investigates potential causes for this widespread colony collapse disorder.

Type: Tutorial

Video/Audio/Animation

Mount St. Helens: Rising From the Ashes :

In this NSF video and reading selection evolutionary biologist and ecologist John Bishop documents the return of living things to Mount St. Helens after the largest landslide in recorded history. This is a rare opportunity for scientists to get to study a devastated area and how it comes back from scratch in such detail.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

STEM Lessons - Model Eliciting Activity

Cleaning Up Your Act:

Cleaning Up Your Act Model Eliciting Activity (MEA) provides students with a real world engineering problem in which they must work as a team to design a procedure to select the best material for cleaning up an oil spill. The main focus of this MEA is to recognize the consequences of a catastrophic event, and understand the environmental and economical impact based on data analysis. Students will conduct individual and team investigations in order to arrive at a scientifically sound solution to the problem.

Preserving Our Marine Ecosystems:

The focus of this MEA is oil spills and their effect on the environment. In this activity, students from a fictitious class are studying about the effects of an oil spill on marine ecosystems and have performed an experiment in which they were asked to try to rid a teaspoon of corn oil from a baking pan filled with two liters of water as thoroughly as possible in a limited timeframe and with limited resources. By examining, analyzing, and evaluating experimental data related to resource usage, disposal, and labor costs, students must face the tradeoffs that are involved in trying to preserve an ecosystem when time, money, and resources are limited.

Original Student Tutorials Science - Grades 9-12

Biodiversity and Non-native Species:

See how non-native species can impact ecosystem biodiversity to create problems for native species in this interactive tutorial.

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Original Student Tutorial

Biodiversity and Non-native Species:

See how non-native species can impact ecosystem biodiversity to create problems for native species in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Perspectives Video: Experts

Measuring Biodiversity to Evaluate Human Impact:

Humans impact the environment in a number of ways. Learn more about how we interact with nature!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Protect our Fisheries from Invasive Species:

Lionfish and other species are roaring past our native populations. Learn more.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Tutorial

The Case of the Vanishing Honeybees:

In the past decade, the US honeybee population has been decreasing at an alarming and unprecedented rate. While this is obviously bad news for honeypots everywhere, bees also help feed us in a bigger way -- by pollinating our nation's crops. Emma Bryce investigates potential causes for this widespread colony collapse disorder.

Type: Tutorial

Video/Audio/Animation

Mount St. Helens: Rising From the Ashes :

In this NSF video and reading selection evolutionary biologist and ecologist John Bishop documents the return of living things to Mount St. Helens after the largest landslide in recorded history. This is a rare opportunity for scientists to get to study a devastated area and how it comes back from scratch in such detail.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Perspectives Video: Experts

Measuring Biodiversity to Evaluate Human Impact:

Humans impact the environment in a number of ways. Learn more about how we interact with nature!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Protect our Fisheries from Invasive Species:

Lionfish and other species are roaring past our native populations. Learn more.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert