MOUNTAIN ECOLOGY CLASS ASSIGNMENTS
DAILY JOURNAL: You will be given a trip notebook to keep notes on your trip. For example, you should keep a daily journal of things you did, things you saw and things you learned. You might also want to keep track of the people you met, and anything you wish to remember, such as your first impressions, your surprises, etc.
GROUP PROJECT: Everyone will assist in the group project. This year, the group project will involve the collection of forest data that can be used to describe each ecosystem sub-type. These data will include community variables like dominant tree species and diversity, and association between the dominant species and other plants/animals in the area. Associated with dominant trees, we will collect location data to include latitude, elevation, and aspect.
INDIVIDUAL PROJECT: Each individual project must be approved in general terms prior to beginning it at the hunting lodge in Wyoming. The questions to be addressed will all involve comparisons at different elevations, aspects, fire/logging, or other habitat parameter. Quantitative data will be collected to answer these questions (see link on project suggestions). Also at the hunting lodge, we will discuss how to put together both a written report, and a PowerPoint presentation for these projects. These will be due a few weeks after we return, but substantial progress can be made on these assignments in the last couple days, via the class laptop computer.
ASSISTING WITH CAMP / KP DUTIES: All students are expected to participate equally (voluntarily and cheerfully) in the running of the campsite. This includes food prep, cooking, and kitchen clean-up. It also includes setting up and taking down camp/kitchen equipment, and the packing and unpacking of the trailer. Please watch for your opportunities to do your fair share. There will be PLENTY of opportunities to help, and class participation is a BIG part of your class grade.
Finally, it is important that you be able to keep up with your classmates (& teacher) when it comes to the fast pace of the class. There is a lot of traveling from one campsite to the next, and so early starts will be required in order to get to the destination for that day in time to see the ecosystem and make measurements before dark. If you are slow to organize yourself in the morning, or do not use time efficiently at each stop, you will throw the whole class off its time-table.