Complete the Population Biology Lab found at: http://www.mhhe.com/biosci/genbio/virtual_labs/BL_04/BL_04.html. This lab gives you the opportunity to explore the affects of competition on population growth.
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CAREFULLY, follow the instructions to conduct your virtual experiments. Fill in the table below as you go. The questions below are the same ones found in the “journal” of the lab. Hint: Make sure you read click on the “Information” box; valuable information for answering the questions can be found there! You are required to answer all six questions and submit this document to the Dropbox. Do NOT email the journal questions to your instructor through the website above.
|Paramecium Growth Data||P. aurelia grown alone, cells, mL||P. caudatum grown alone , cells, mL||P. aurelia grown in mixed culture, cells/mL||P. caudatum grown in mixed culture, cells/mL|
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1. Make a hypothesis about how you think the two species of Paramecium will grow alone and how they will grow when they are grown together. (Make sure you understand what a hypothesis is before you address this!)
2. Explain how you tested your hypothesis. (Give details of how you conducted your experiment. Consider this the “Methods” section of a lab report.)
3. On what day did the Paramecium caudatum population reach the carrying capacity of the environment when it was grown alone? How do you know?
4. On what day did the Paramecium aurelia population reach the carrying capacity of the environment? How do you know?
5. Explain the differences in the population growth patterns of the two Paramecium species. What does this tell you about how Paramecium aurelia uses available resources?
6. Describe what happened when the Paramecium populations were mixed in the same test tube. Do the results support the principle of competitive exclusion?
7. Explain how this experiment demonstrates that no two species can occupy the same niche.
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