Ana səhifə

How altitude and latitude affect configuration of biomes in Southern Arizona and Central Oregon

Yüklə 403 Kb.
ölçüsü403 Kb.
  1   2   3   4   5   6   7
How altitude and latitude affect configuration of biomes in Southern Arizona and Central Oregon.  

Bryan Abbott, Undergrad, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah 84602.                 Email: 

      The purpose of this experiment is to show how altitude and latitude affects biomes.  In this experiment I will be showing the difference in the altitude of two biomes that are found in Southern Arizona (about 32 degrees North) and in Central Oregon (about 44 degrees North). I will be using the plant native plants Pinus halepensis and Pinus ponderosa. Both of these plants are found in different Biomes. The Biomes that they are found in are the desert and the coniferous forest. The ratio of deference in altitude to latitude will allow us to predict where those biomes should be found at different latitudes.  

Key Words: Biome, Pine tree, Elevation, Altitude, Pinus halepensis, Pinus ponderosa, Coniferous forest, Desert

Distribution and Variation of Species of Trees in Provo, Utah. 

Brianna M. Abilez, 783 N. 200 E. Apt. C, Provo, Utah 84606. Email: Version: Fall 2008. nature experience Abilez fall 2008.doc 


      The purpose of this study was to observe and record the different species of trees of my surroundings. This consisted of around my apartment building, campus, and mostly, Provo Canyon. The study involved describing different trees, the changes they went through, their characteristics and their specified scientific name through research. I will focus on a few species to show a more focused subject, as well as comparing them to ones in another location, or ones of the same family. The different trees were observed and described by their varying characteristics and features. The variations are seen in the results and the changes over time with these trees are recorded and gone into detail in the discussion. 

Key Words: Trees, Characteristic changes, foliage, species, distribution

Leaf Size and Effect of Exposure to Sound 

C. Kristopher Alder, 1115 Merrill Hall, Provo, Utah 84604.  Email:


      The goal of this study  twaso determine what effect, if any, regular exposure to sound has on the growth of Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon).  Several samples of grass were selected in the Provo area and exposed to an audio recording many times over the course of two weeks.  Their growth was measured and recorded every few days.  Comparisons were made between plants exposed to sound, and those left unexposed (Parsons, 1968). 

Keywords:  grass, sound, cynodon, leaf size, growth.

Habitats of the Beaver (Castor canadensis) through Stream Alteration in Parley’s Canyon: Park City, Utah, USA 

Allison Anderson, 1340 North Freedom Blvd. Apt. 335, Provo, Utah, 84064 Email: allison7741@comcast.


      Like humans, beavers (Castor canadensis) have the capacity to drastically modify their surrounding landscape. When available, beavers create habitats by burrowing into nearby lakes and river banks. However when such resources do not exist, the beaver may transform an ecosystem into a suitable environment by changing stream morphology through building dams and lodges. At my family cabin located at the summit of Parley’s Canyon there are two separate beaver ponds, one located at a higher elevation than the other. Observations conducted at the individual ponds may reveal the processes beavers use to transform the local terrain into a functional habitat. Site surroundings, stream depth and gradient, air and water temperature, along with local vegetation and various populations, determine the presence of beaver lodges.

Keywords: Castor canadensis, beaver, habitats, transform, dams, streams, Parley’s Canyon, ponds, processes

Fall Foliage—What and Why?

  Katherine Anderson



            I have always had an interest in leaves during the fall.  For my Nature Experience I decided to study the leaves that were changing color in the mountains.  I saw many beautiful colors and varying types of leaves.  This lead me to do research on why leaves change color, which leaves seem to change first, and what colors certain leaves become.

keywords: trees, leaves, winter

The Secrets of Spider’s Cobweb in Provo, Utah, USA 

Seung Woo Baek, 329 East 1250 North, Orem, Utah 84057. Email: 


      It would seem that the spiders are catching their prey, so easily, by weaving cobwebs. This is because the prey, such as crickets and dragonflies, would be entangled with the web by themselves. However, I discovered some advantages and impedimental factors on the usage of the web by observing the spiders’ behavior. Surprisingly, the spiders had to do some exhausting work daily to maintain the viscosity of thread. I found that they had to remove all the dewdrops every morning and remodel their webs frequently to maximize the number of preys they catch. Additionally, they had a skill to attract more insects by building the web that could reflect the specific intensity level of ultraviolet light toward the insects. This experiment was conducted in several parks in Provo where I could find the spiders. I took several interesting photographs to show the detail of their daily movements. The cobweb has a mystique although it looks plain to me. 

Keywords: Spider, Cobweb, Viscosity of thread, Prey, Dewdrops, Ultraviolet light.

The eating habits of birds and how it is affected by the environment in the Provo Canyon  

Megan Bailey, 692 W. 1850 N., Provo, Utah, 84604



      The purpose of this study was to observe the eating habits and diet of birds native to Utah and evaluate how it was affected by the surrounding environment. Many birds’ diets consist of living prey, and it is common for birds to eat insects, worms, fish, etc. However it must be noted that birds consume many different varieties of food. This study was meant to present observations on these different varieties and which are most desirable among birds. Throughout this study five different food types were observed. These food types being, birdseed, bread crumbs, peanut butter, jam, and fresh fruit. They were put in separate dishes and then placed at the mouth of Provo Rock Canyon. The amounts of food were weighed before they were placed in the canyon and every four hours afterward. The dishes of food were placed in the canyon on three different days. After three days of observation, all the data was collected. It was then analyzed with the objective to discover which was most desirable among the birds in the Provo Canyon. After three days I observed that the birdseed, and the bread crumbs were vastly more favored among the birds in Provo Rock Canyon. They consistently had the most eaten. Bringing me to the conclusion that granivorous birds are most present in the Provo Canyon, and that birdseed would generally be a good way to attract birds.  

Key Words: Aves, diet, insectivorous, granivorous

The Attraction of Light to Moths (Insecta: Lepidoptera: Heterocera) 

Courtney Baker, 701 N 500 W #212, Provo, Utah 84601. 


      I discovered the reason that moths are attracted to light and whether they gain any benefits from exposure to such light. I investigated whether moths are attracted to all types of light and if they are preferable to some lights over others. I tested their preference and sensitivity to a “regular” incandescent 60 watt light bulb and a 60 watt ultraviolet “black light.” The ultraviolet “black light” attracted an average of 11 moths compared to the average of 6 moths that the incandescent bulb attracted, proving that the ultraviolet lights. I researched where moths go during the day since they are almost always seen at night. 

Key words: light attraction, incandescent light bulb, ultraviolet light bulb, moth

Indigenous versus Invasive Plant Species in Provo, Utah, U.S.A. 

Karissa Baker, 49 Fox Hall, Provo, Utah 84604


      The invasion and establishment of alien plant species can have numerous adverse affects on a community, the most common of which is the eradication of native species through completion for resources.  Alien species often follow human migratory patterns.  For example, the colonization of the Americas brought many European plant species into the New World.  Later, the emigration of the Mormon pioneers to Utah brought several new crops, trees and weedy species to Utah, many of which have become firmly established in the region’s environment.  In this study, I designated a random 1 meter study area in each of two different locations and marked it off with a string boundary.  I then examined and identified each of the plant species in the study area.  The two study areas were Rock Canyon in Provo, Utah, and the bank of the Provo River in Canyon Glen Park, in Provo Canyon.  In the Rock Canyon study area I found five native species, one non-native species, and two unidentified plants.  In the Provo River study area, I found one native species, three non-native species, and three unidentified plants.  The non-native species found in these sites possessed many traits proven to increase invasive success in plants.  Some of these traits included favorable growth patterns and methods of seed dispersal.     

Keywords: Rock Canyon Park; Provo River; invasive species; native species

The result of wildfire on the solubility of soils near Draper, Utah 

Brett Bardsley, PO Box 7253, Univ. Station, Provo, UT 84602 Email: 



      Many studies have confirmed that, depending on the duration and intensity of a brush fire, specific elements are sent to the atmosphere and the physical properties of soil are changed. Nevertheless, there has been little research conducted on how such variables affect the water solubility of soil found in the Wasatch Front. After seeing the rapid regeneration of plant life after a 200-acre wildfire burned through the Wasatch National Forest east of Draper, Utah on August 29, 2008, I was interested in learning how the solubility of the soil could have helped with the regeneration and why there was so little runoff during the heavy rains that occurred just weeks after the fire. For this purpose, I conducted an experiment to test how the fire affected the solubility of the mountain’s soil. Multiple soil samples were taken from both burned and unburned locations on the mountain. The samples were then measured to find differences in weight and water solubility. The resulting data was then used to find trends in solubility. The analysis of the data showed that the soil taken from the burned locations of the mountain were lighter and more water soluble.

Keywords: brush fire, Wasatch Front, solubility, soil, water, Draper, Utah, runoff, burn 

The Changing Leaves of the Gambel Oak (Quercus gambelli) trees in Rock Canyon, Provo, Utah, as a Result of Temperature.  

Kathryn Eleanor Barker, 52 Horne Hall, Provo, Utah, 84604 Email:


      Deciduous trees have leaves that change in the fall and eventually shed for the winter. In this study, the Gambel Oak (Quercus gambelli) of Rock Canyon Park in Provo, Utah was studied. There are many factors which contribute to how fast a deciduous tree's leaves change, but the one focused on in this study was how temperature affected the rate of change on the Gambel Oak. As the temperature of Rock Canyon gradually got cooler, the amount of leaves changed over a week was observed over the course of four weeks. A scatter plot was created  and a line of best fit was calculated to examine the correlation between temperature and the rate of change. This tree was identified by taking pictures, examining the leaves, and then searching through A Guide to the Trees of Utah and the Intermountain West by Michael Kuhns.

Key Words: Gambel Oak, Quercus gambelli, Rock Canyon, deciduous, leaves, colors

The internal survival mechanism of the earthworms Aporrectodea longa 

Lindsay M. Bean, Undergraduate, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah 84604. 


      The choice of an earthworm’s domestic soil seems to be a purposeful one. A worm will be able to reasonably live in most soiled environments, however, they lean (or wiggle) towards those that give them the most strength. This will probably be because of their natural inclination towards survival.  The earthworms, under the phylum of annelids, will first be identified as the earthworm Aporrectodea longa.  Then the moistness of the earth and the already existent activity of the earthworms will be taken into account.  Each will then be placed in this same earth they were founded in, but in an isolated container. Although this must include tampering by the experimenter, this will allow these said earthworms to then be observed over a period of 14 days, or two weeks. Approximated time spent in each environment will be plotted.  This experiment will be a step towards answering the question of whether or not the earthworm will be able to internally find the moister soil. 

Keywords: Soil, Earthworms, Aporrectodea longa, moisture, survival

Attraction of insects to certain types and intensities of light and its application in providing desirable outdoor experiences: Provo, Utah, U.S.A.

Dereksen R. Beck, 1340 N. Freedom Blvd. #208, Provo, Utah 84604 Email.

    Moths and many other flying insects are positively phototactic, and usually move towards light. This could be useful perhaps for navigation, or a natural reaction to move away from the ground if disturbed. Also, different organisms are attracted to different light intensities. Moths are attracted to moonlight, but not sunlight (Staude 2007). Seeing as numerous flying insects are attracted to light, the purpose of this experiment is to learn which types of insects are attracted to which types and intensities of light. Studies, taking place in Provo canyon at night, will include the positioning and careful observation of different types of light and different intensities, such as halogen, incandescent and fluorescent. Using the results and the observation of the efficacy of different wattages of light used to illuminate an outdoor setting, a conclusion can be made regarding the type of light used and the necessary intensity. The final goal is to elect the proper ratio of bulb wattage to insects attracted in order to create a desirable, efficient outdoor environment.

Keywords: insects, moths, attraction to light, positive phototaxis, fluorescent lighting

Cocos nucifera and how it’s influenced by different geographical regions

Paola Becker, Undergraduate, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84606. Email:


      The purpose for my nature experience was to see the physical differences in palm trees, more specifically cocos nucifera, that grew in El Salvador. I wanted to see if there were major differences in the size and color of cocos nucifera that grew within the city of San Miguel and those that grew in the beach just south of the city called Cuco. My hypothesis before starting was that the palm trees in the city would be smaller and darker than the ones found in the beach due to the lack of sunlight and available nutrients in the soil. Daily observations were made for 10 days in both locations and the results ended up being very close to my predictions.

      Keywords: Palm Trees, Cocos Nucifera, El Salvador, San Miguel, Cuco,

The Effect of Altitude on the Weight and Density of Insects Within a Small Altitude Range

Brandon Beeks, Undergraduate, Brigham Young University, Pleasant Grove, Utah 84062.  

Email: Version: Fall 2008. beeksbNE2008.docx 


      Rapoport’s rule states that the abundance and diversity of plants and animals are generally smaller at lower latitudes, than at higher latitudes.  In 1992 Stevens found evidence to expand this rule to say that changes in altitude also affect the abundance and diversity of plants and animals.  The purpose of this study is to see if this hypothesis holds true for insects as well.  The total amount (based on weight) and range in diversity of insects (based on number of insects) at different altitudes levels within Utah Valley is observed.  Three bug traps for non-flying insects were set at three separate altitudes. The contents collected from the traps show that there is a increase in insect weight with and increase altitude. They also show that there is a decrease in the number of insects with the increase in altitude.  The results provide evidence that Rapoport's rule does not apply to insect weight at smaller ranges of altitude change.  It does however apply to insect diversity at smaller ranges of altitude change.

Keywords: Rapoport's Rule, Insect Diversity, Altitude, Bio-Diversity, and Non-Flying Insects

The Effect of Water Content and Elevation and The Role It Plays on The Diversity of Plant Life In SouthFork Canyon, Utah, USA  

Chad Bennett, 3145 N Canyon Rd. Provo, UT 84604 Email:  


      Water is essential for life.  It is the compound of two of the most important elements in this world; every living thing uses it and every living creature would die without it.  But studies have shown that water does a lot more than just sustain life; it plays major roles in Bio-diversity, allowing some organisms to flourish while others waste away.  In fact, water can contribute to diversity by  “the cycling of mineral nutrients [which] is one of the most important processes occurring in the forest ecosystems” (Rentch, Hicks, 2002).  This was tested by examining the diversity of plants within the belt transect format; three elevations were selected at random and within those three elevations two, four square meter plots were tested for their diversity of plant life.  Each elevation had a site located directly at the bank of the river, and then a second test plot ten meters from the river.  Although there were measurable differences between the plots the variance was less than expected.  The plot at an elevation of 6301 ft. by the stream had the greatest diversity with the identification of nine different kinds of plants, Senecio pauciflorus (Rayless Alpine Groundsel) being the most common of the nine.  But the area with the second greatest amount of variation was 5720ft. by the stream where there were six different species found there.

Key words:  Elevation, bio-diversity, Senecio pauiflorus

Patterns and Factors that Influence Leaf Pigmentation Change in Acer campestre, Pyrus calleryana, and Ulmus americana 

Sam Bernhisel, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, 84604   



      The goal of my nature experience was to determine if there was a general trend in leaves off the same tree in the way they lost their green pigmentation and also to determine the effect, if any, that the amount of direct sunlight a tree received had on this process.  Observations were carried out on three trees, all of different species, around the BYU campus. Data was collected twice a week throughout the month of November 2008 on three species of trees: an american elm Ulmus americana,  a Hedge maple Acer campestre, and a Bradford Pear tree Pyrus calleryana. Information including a rough estimate on what percentage of the tree’s leaves had changed color, general patterns in which leaves turned from green to purple, yellow, and other colors was collected. The process of a tree losing its green pigmentation, commonly called autumn colors, is caused by a decrease in chlorophyll production by the leaf in response to cold temperatures allowing other pigments such as carotene, xanthophyll, and anthocyanin to become visible. Some of the conclusions of my observation were that the outer most extremities of the the leaf were the first to lose chlorophyll and change from being green as well as that the amount of direct sunlight received by a tree did have a noteworthy effect in determining the rate at which leaves lose pigmentation.  

Keywords-  pigmentation; sunlight; pattern; chlorophyll, carotene

Aspen tree Reproduction

myleka Bevans-White,


I am studing how Aspen Trees Sexually and Asexually reproduce and how effective each method is.
The trees I decided to study were the; Populus tremuloides or Quaking American Aspen, and the populus tremula or Aspen or European Aspen.
I decided to go with the most common trees to Provo Canyon, to examine what makes their disruption of seeds more efficient in Utah's climate. I am also
examing their Asexual Reproduction due to the fact that Aspens
tend to colon themselves through expansive root systems containing thousands of sprouts  or "suckers" all really the same tree.
These large bodies of trees then are usually all one sex and unable to sexually reproduce for lack of another gender. I am studing
how this benifts and hurts the Aspen trees survival and growth.

Key Words: Aspen, Repoduction, Root system, Asexual, Sexual, Seeds

The Effects of Temperature and Humidity on Cricket (Orthoptera: Gryllus assimilis) Chirping in Rock Canyon: Provo, UT U.S.A.

Janine R. Bird, 555 North 500 East Apt. 24, Provo, Utah 84606 Email:


      The frequency of cricket (Gryllus assimilis) chirping varies immensely from one climate to another.   Research has shown that crickets are more likely to chirp depending on variables within their surroundings.  To gain a better understanding as to which factors affect a cricket’s vocal activity with greater magnitude than others, I decided to observe cricket liveliness in Rock Canyon.   There, I recorded and analyzed native cricket chirping on a daily basis for a total of three weeks. Weather variations were especially taken into account, namely, temperature and precipitation.  Using table charts and graphs, the collected data reveals that cricket chirping increases linearly with higher temperatures.

Key words: Crickets, temperature, precipitation, stridulation, average

Use of Visual Cues in Helping Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) to Navigate to and from Food Sources 

Pete A. Bird, 375 West 1720 North Apt. 114, Provo, UT 84604  Email: 


      This study was designed to evaluate the methods used by ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) to navigate to and from food sources.  More specifically, I evaluated how ants store visual cues from their surroundings to remember where food sources are located.  Experiments were conducted that measured an ants ability to relocate a source of food solely based on recurring visual elements.  In this experiment a solid white floor and a solid black wall were used.  The evaluations showed how ants do, indeed, commit a visual image of their surroundings when they locate a source of food.  They are then able to recall this information as they attempt to locate the food source.  A second experiment was then conducted to test the ants' ability to navigate from the food source back to their home based on the same visual cues.  Data gathered from the experiment affirmed the hypotheses that ants are able to commit to memory these images and recall them in order to both locate previously discovered food sources and return home.

Keywords: Formicidae, ants, visual, navigate, food, image.

Effectiveness of Five Pan-trap Colors Determined by Number of Insects Each Color Collects 

Lynette Blunck, Undergraduate, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah 84606.  Email: 


      The purpose of this study was to compare the effectiveness of the traditional pan-trap colors (yellow, blue, and white) to the effectiveness of pink and green pan-traps in attracting insects.  The hypothesis that the descending order of pan-trap effectiveness by color would be yellow; blue; white; pink; and green, was tested.  Sets of the five specified pan-trap colors were set out in three different locations in Rock Canyon Park.  After these sets of pan-traps collected insects, the results of the number of insects each trap color collected was analyzed and will be discussed.  The hypothesis regarding pan-trap color effectiveness in collecting insects was partially seen in the results.

Keywords:  insect sampling, pan-trapping, color.

Behavioral Changes of Earthworms (phylum annelid) as a result of changes in their environment.

Jonathan R. Boren, 1340 N Freedom Blvd. #418, Provo, Utah, 84604



      The purpose of this study was to understand the behavioral changes in worms as their environment is effected by large amounts of precipitation.  Its common knowledge that after heavy rainfall earthworms can be found on the pavement or sidewalks.  This study was conducted to try to understand the reason for the worms leaving their burrows and moving to the surface of the soil and sometimes to the pavement.  Heavy rainfall was simulated and the results were recorded.  The data was inconclusive and did not support the hypothesis that the reason for the movement from the burrow to the surface is because of a lack of oxygen beneath the surface and sometimes on the surface of the soil. 

Keywords: Phylum annelid, worm grunter, rooping iron, habitat

Eating Preferences of Mallard Ducks (Anas platyrynchos) When Presented with a Choice of Breadcrumbs, Feeder Fish, or Cracked Corn.

 Kelsey Brems, Biology 100, 761 E. 820 N. #226 , Provo, Utah 84606  Email:


  Anas platyrynchos, more commonly known as the mallard duck, is found across the world in or near sources of water.  In their natural habitat, the mallard duck generally feeds on plant life and sources of protein when living as wildlife unless given opportunity to feed from humans.  This experiment is to test which type of food mallard ducks (Anas platyrynchos) prefer when given a choice while living in their natural habitat.  I wanted to experiment and find out what type of food mallard ducks would prefer when given the option of three different types of food that would be readily available to them, which in turn removes the hunting and foraging aspect of their feeding, leaving simply the duck's choice. The test sample, eight ducks at Fanno Creek located in Tigard, Oregon, was given an option between feeding fish, breadcrumbs, or cracked corn all available to them in the same area.  The data that I will find will determine what type of food these mallard ducks prefer in their diet.  Based on the averages collected from the experiments conducted, the breadcrumbs were preferred the most among the mallard ducks as the primary source of their diet. 


Keywords:  Anas platyrynchos, mallard ducks, grain, breadcrumbs, cracked corn, protein, feeding fish.  

Comparing Mountain Plant Life on Northern and Southern Facing Slopes in Rock Canyon: Provo, Utah, U.S.A.

Mitchell M. Brower, 133 Snow Hall, Provo, Utah  84604 Email: 


      The purpose of this study was to see the difference of plant life between northern and southern facing slopes.  The difference between the two is the amount of sun exposure each one gets during the day.  The north and south facing slopes of Rock Canyon provided a perfect place to carry out my experiment.  North facing slopes have higher soil water content than south facing because north facing are blocked from the sun most of the day.  I observed the two slopes to visually see the difference in plant life and decided to measure the water content in the soil on both sides to prove that the south facing slope is drier.  I found that the north facing slope did have higher soil water content.  The plant life on the north facing slope was more diverse and abundant than the south facing.  My studies agreed with the studies previously done. 

Keywords:  North facing slope, south facing slope, sun exposure, soil water content, plant life, scrub oak (Quercus gambelii), diverse, abundant.

Variations in Spider Web Designs in Relation to Height from the Ground near Ogden River, Ogden, Utah, U.S.A. 

Kimberly Brown 669 E. 800 N. #S109 Provo, UT 84606. Email:


      Many spiders (of the order Araneae) build webs of various sizes to catch their prey. The variation of web design is likely to be dependent on the species of spider and the vegetation that the webs are constructed around, but the web designs also vary in relation to the height they are from the ground. Observations and data were collected in Ogden Canyon, near Ogden River, of the different spider webs found in areas near and far from the river’s edge. A correlation was found between the height and the pattern of the spider web, but the correlation is most likely due to the variations in vegetation available to be used for web-building at different heights. Record was taken of the height each web was from the ground as well as detailed notes and sketches of the web. A graph is included to display the findings of web patterns compared to the height the web hangs from the ground.


      Spider web, web pattern, web design, web structure, vegetation, Araneae, Ogden, Utah

The Onset of Hibernation in the Mountains near Provo, Utah

Shana E. Brown 832 E 820 N Provo, UT 84606



      This study was to show how the onset of winter triggers hibernation in animals. As animals enter their state of hibernation, they gradually disappear from their active lifestyle above ground. A study was conducted in Provo Canyon, watching how gradually it is that these organisms went into hibernation. Once a week for three consecutive weeks, predetermined organisms were counted and recorded. Data was collected specifically on ants, gnats, mites, and mice. The temperature and weather were also recorded those days that data was collected. The data collected showed that as the temperature drops, as the habitat changes, organisms gradually became less prevalent in the area as they settled down to hibernate for the winter. I saw at least one of these organisms the first time I collected data, and the last time I counted I did not see any organisms from any of these species. It can be concluded from this study that organisms gradually go into hibernation as the temperature and weather becomes colder and less helpful for food sources to produce.

Key Words: mouse (Peromyscus leucopus), mite (Trombicula alfreddugesi), ant (Camponotus pennsylvanicus), gnat (Bradysia coprophila), hibernation, torpor, diapause, temperature, change of seasons

The effects of natural sunlight and air exposure on a Dracaena Marginata, as opposed to shade and protection from other plants.(Plant: Liliaceae)  

Esther Cabrera, Student of Brigham Young University . Provo , Utah 84604 .  



I purchased a Dracaena Marginata plant recently and placed it inside of my dorm room. Instead of testing the difference between the plant while being outside versus inside, I decided to take the plant outside. I observed the plant in the pot and also out of the pot in actual soil among the other plants. This experiment was conducted outside of Taylor Hall in Helaman Halls. There is an area where other plants and bushes are planted. I recorded the results of the Dracaena inside the protection of the pot while watering it one cup everyday. Than a week later I removed the plant from the pot and planted it amongst the landscaping and observed it for a week. The results were uniform. The plant had not changed much from the soil to the pot. I researched about the Dracaena and discovered that the plant can be equally grown in a populated area or simply in a pot of its own.  

Keywords: observation, replanting, consistency

Prey Interception in Webs of Orb-weaving Spiders (Araneae: Araneoidea) in Provo, Utah, U.S.A. 

Neal Call, 1441 Cherry Circle, Provo, Utah  84604 Email: 


      The interception of prey within an orb spider’s (Araneae: Araneoidea) web is strongly determined by the mesh width, or space between threads on the web, but the probability of prey contacting the web is not clear in the current literature.  I hypothesized that the chance of an insect contacting a web would increase the closer it is to the center of the web, but did not know by how much the chance would increase.  I conducted observations at three locations near the Provo River in Provo Canyon, Utah.  In this observational study, careful measurement of orb web architecture cross-referenced with wing-span size of prey allowed statistical calculation of the probability of different sizes of prey contacting web filaments at different points on an orb-web, assuming that they fly through the space a web occupies.  I plotted wingspan/profile size against the percent chance of contacting orb-webs.  Results showed that the chance of prey contacting the web is higher near the center of the web than near the outside edges, and that webs with smaller mesh width are more likely to catch insects of various sizes. 

Keywords: Araneae: Araneoidea; orb-weaving spiders; prey interception; wingspan; mesh width

Nature Experience: Correlation between tree bark thickness and tree height

Ashley N. Campbell Biology 101 215 E Richards Hall Provo UT, 84604



      The purpose of this study was to find a correlation between the thickness of tree bark for different tree species and average height that the specific species grows. Three trees were identified for this observation Acer grandidentatum, Quercus macrucarpa, and Pinus resinosa. The thickness of each tree’s bark was measured and compared to the average height of the corresponding tree. I hypothesized that the thicker the bark of a tree the taller that tree would be. However, according to my findings, based off the data from the above three trees, it was found that there is a negative correlation between tree bark thickness and tree height. In simpler terms, the thicker the bark of the tree the shorter the tree will be.   

Keywords: canyon maple, red pine, burr oak, correlation

Influence of Temperature on the Aquatic Life in Utah Lake: Provo, Utah

Marissa Campbell, 300 N 185 E Apt. 15 Provo, UT 84606 Email:


      Plankton are the base of every freshwater food web, and give rise to the amount and diversity of life found in freshwater habitats. Thermal conditions can significantly influence the composition and properties of plankton communities. The plankton communities can be affected to such a degree that there could be alterations in the food web that shift the balance and types of plankton which then affect the composition of other organisms in the habitat. The metabolism and production of new plankton are affected by sunlight, and temperature. Samples were extracted from Utah Lake for analysis. Multiple samples were taken, each at a different temperature, that were then examined with a microscope. A small amount of the sample was then systematically searched for number of aquatic life forms. This data was recorded and then plotted to find the relation between temperature and amount of life. The trend in the graph shows that there is a direct relationship between decreasing temperature and the amount of life. This result tells us that the aquatic life in Utah Lake is similar to the life in lakes that were found in other studies. The condition of Utah Lake has not yet severely altered the plankton’s response to temperature.

Key words: Temperature; plankton; aquatic life; Utah Lake; Freshwater habitat

Influence of weather, specifically sunlight, rain clouds and perhaps snow, on different species of spiders living in the same environment together found at Rock Canyon: Provo, Utah, U.S.A. 

Isaac Carr, Undergraduate, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, 84606. Email:  


      The behavior of spiders is influenced and affected by many things ranging from temperature, food and water to what species of spider. However, perhaps more important is what other prey (animals for the spiders to eat) are nearby, for after all, all are predatory. Spiders live in most parts of the world except cold regions (Bastyra, Watts, Henwood, 2004). But experiments and more research must be conducted to determine, what is the affect of weather, on different species of spiders. Whether or not they will become more agile or it will cause them to become weaker because of the rain or sun. Or rather will the more sunlight or rain have no affect on the spiders at all, positive or negative? Data and statistics will be gathered to show which species of spiders were affected and which were not.

Flower Attraction of Bees in the State of Utah. 

Hillary Chamberlain, 1340 N. Freedom Blvd. #342 Provo, UT 84604 


      The attraction to flowers by bees is due to floral signals such as color and scent, but research and study has to be done to show that this attraction is present and not due to other causes or coincidence.  A study of bees on a random sample of flowers will be done to watch their interaction with the flowers.  The same set of flowers will be watched and the bees will be counted on each different type of flower in the garden.  The time that the bee spends on the flower will also be watched.  This will be done multiple times to get an accurate conclusion.  This will help to find if bees are attracted to a certain type of flower, color, smell, or a combination of both. 

Key Words:  flowers, color, scent, bees, attraction. 

Anas Platyrhynchos (mallard duck) sights and similarities in different areas of the US that relate back to either dance or psychology 

Michelle Christensen, Undergraduate, Brigham Young University, Provo Utah 84606.  Email:  


      While walking around campus at the beginning of the semester, I saw a duck pond that had many ducks both swimming in the water and also walking around the pond in groups.  I noticed that the ducks sometimes formed straight lines with one another.  I decided I would see if the ducks had dance-like technique by using space, time and energy when they would swim or walk with one another. 

      I also wanted to be able to see how similar ducks and people are in the sense of having inborn traits within them, such as the ducks following a specific leader. 

      I also wanted to see if the weather affected the outcome of their technique to wander together in groups, or lines.  I wanted to observe in both rain and shine as well as different parts of the country.  I seemed to believe that the weather wouldn’t have that much of an effect on how clustered or straight their groups would move on land and in the water. 

Key words

Mallard ducks, dance, movement, space, grouping, line, weather 

Behavior and Travel Patterns of Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) in Northern Utah: Bothwell, Utah, U.S.A. 

Keagan M. Christensen, 2170 North 154 West Apt. 415, Provo, Utah, 84604 Email: 


      The behaviors and travel patterns of mule deer are affected by weather conditions. They say that in Utah the rut or breeding period starts in Mid-November (Wallmo, 1978) but nobody can really answer a few important questions such as: At what temperature is the rut activated? What time of the year does the rut really start going strong? When do the larger bucks start joining herds of does and fawns? I have started monitoring deer in an area with a very strong population of deer. This ranch is in northern Utah near Bothwell, it is 2200 acres and the current population density of deer on the ranch is about 44 per square mile. Estimates put the overall population base at about 150 animals. As the rut is going to be occurring within about the next two-three weeks I will be monitoring behavior of the deer pre-rut during the rut and after the rut. Travel patterns, mating habits, herd size and when the larger bucks join the herds will be monitored very closely.  

Keywords: Rut, Mule Deer, Odocoileus hemionus, Travel

Size’s (both height and trunk width) effect on leaf color change and leaf dropping of narrow-leaf poplar (Salix angustifolia) trees in Provo Canyon: Provo, Utah, U.S.A. 

Ryan C. Christensen, 896 North 910 East, Orem, Utah, 84097 Email: 


      The changing of leaf color in the fall provides great opportunities to enjoy the beauty of the surrounding canyons. The changing of a leaf’s color and when the leaf falls off the tree are part of leaf senescence, or dying off. Several studies have researched temperature and CO2’s affect on the time of leaf senescence. Currently, no studies have been presented on size’s (both height and trunk width) effect on leaf senescence. The observation study focused on three narrow-leaf poplar (Salix angustifolia) trees located in Provo Canyon near Provo, Utah. The three trees ranged from 13.5” x 32’ (width (inches) x height (feet)) to 27” x 60’.  Pictures were compared on three different dates using Adobe Illustrator computer software. The results showed no difference in the time of leaf changing color and falling off of the tree. Therefore, size plays no critical role in leaf senescence among the narrow-leaf poplar.

Keywords: Senescence 

Average size of White Bass (Morone Chrysops) taken from Utah Lake.

Sean R. Chung, Brigham Young University, 674 E 300 N Provo, UT 84606. Email:

 There is a diverse scale of living organisms in the Utah Lake.  There is also a large population of people who enjoy fishing.  There are many laws created in the state of Utah in order to regulate size and number of fishes taken from its waters.  However, the white bass or morone chrysops has no legal size requirements.  There is also no limit to the amount of white bass taken in a single day.  The question of whether or not the white bass taken from Utah Lake follow the average of those taken across the country is being addressed.  66 white bass were drawn from the lake and were measured.  The average size was 21.7 cm with 28 cm being the maximum size and minimum being 19.5 cm. 

Keywords: white bass, size, Utah Lake,

Abundance of Sorbus scopulina and Sambucus melanocarpa berries and fruits and their attractiveness to birds  

MeChel M. Clark, 374N Main St, Orem, Utah 84057 Email:


      In Provo Canyon, Utah County, and Millcreek Canyon, Salt Lake Canyon, Western mountain-ash (Sorbus scopulina) and Black/purple Elderberry (Sambucus melanocarpa) shrubs can easily be identified.  However, the Western mountain-ash shrubs and the red-orange fruits are more abundant.  It was thought that Western mountain-ash was less disturbed by the bird population, therefore its fruits and the shrubs in general were more plentiful.  Four days were spent in the two locations sited above observing which shrubs the local birds preferred to rest on and consume the fruits.  While it was found that the purplish-black berries of the elderberry shrubs (63%) were consumed more by the birds than the red-orange fruits of the mountain-ash (37%) the difference is not significant and there is insufficient evidence to state that the birds are the cause of the abundance of mountain-ash fruits.       

Keywords: Sorbus, mountain-ash, Sambucus, elderberry, shrubs, fruit-eating birds, seeds

Differences in plant growth of the Yellow Rabbitbrush (Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus) based on its growing environment in Davis County, Utah, USA.   

Kristyn Clark, 222 Tingey Hall, Provo, Utah 84604, E-mail:  


      The area in which the Yellow Rabbitbrush grows will have an effect on its size, shape, how far closely it is located to other plants of its species and the amount of leaves and flowers that are on each plant.  A plant that is in the more arid climate of the mountains will need to be more durable and able to grow with limited water.  This could cause the plant to be smaller in size but also more durable. In contrast the same species of plant found in an area like a pond or lake would likely be larger in size and have a fuller shape.  The location has an effect on the plant’s growth and spacing as well as factors such as the number of leaves and flowers and the position of these items on the plant.   

Keywords spacing,

Diversity Among Tree Leaves Based on Elevation and Rain Fall in the Alpine Loop 

Tara J. Cookson, 3221 Taylor Hall, Provo, Utah, 84604 Email:


      The purpose of this study was to find and understand the affect that elevation and rain fall have on leaf diversity among the trees in the Alpine Loop, Utah, U.S..  The Alpine Loop was chosen because of its great diversity among plants and also the constant change in elevation.  Two different areas of the Alpine Loop were chosen, a lower-elevated area and a higher elevated-area.  Maple and Oak trees were most common in the lower-elevated area while aspen trees were most common in the higher-elevated areas.  Both elevations produced trees with drip tip leaves.  In the valleys of the mountains (lowest-elevated area), the pine tree is most common.  These trees do not have drip-tips and survive better in dryer soil or soil that drains water quickly.  Elevation of each area was recorded and photographs were taken of each tree type found in those areas.  Through my observations, the amount of rainfall and the elevation combined affect the leaf type among trees in the Alpine Loop.

Keywords: Alpine Loop, higher-elevated area, lower-elevated area, lowest-elevated area, oak, maple, aspen, pine, rainfall, drip tip.

Research to Determine if Insects Have Parallel Hunger Cravings to Humans. Provo, UTAH, U.S.A

Larissa Cox, 2102 N. 170 W. Provo, UT 84604. Email:


This  experiment  was organized to observe if insects of all sorts had parallel hunger cravings to those of humans.  I wanted to determine if insects also craved breakfast at the same time we craved breakfast, or lunch at the same time we craved lunch, etc. I used food samples of three separate food categories (breakfast, cereal; lunch, peanut-butter and jelly sandwich; dinner; pasta) and placed them near the bank of a river.  Then I checked on them at eight in the morning, at noon, and again at six at night, and recorded how many insects were on each food sample at the given time.  After this observation was made, no correlation was found between the insects hunger cravings to that of our own.     

Keywords: hunger, prey, insects (ground dwelling and predatory)

The effect of temperature and weather changes on Rock Canyon bird population.

David Crall, 143 W. 2060 N. Apt 209, Provo, UT 84604,


I observed the bird population of Provo's Rock Canyon between the times of 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. every other saturday starting September 20 and ending November 15 to discover whether or not temperature and weather changes in the area affected the activity level and number of birds. I purchased a hopper bird feeder and filled it with black oil sunflower seeds as I was told by the storekeeper that feed is known to be highly attractive to birds around the Provo area. I counted the number of birds that came within 10 feet of the feeder that I hung on a tree on the outskirts of the park. My observations support my hypothesis that there is a higher frequency of birds on warm days with clear skies.

Keywords: bird population, Rock Canyon, frequency

The Effects of Moisture and Mulch on the Foraging Activity of Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Provo Canyon, Provo, Utah, USA

Devin M. Curry, 1565 N. University Ave. Apt. 125, Provo, Utah 84604 Email: 


      Many studies have been done to try to determine what affects the foraging activity of ants (Formicidae). Finding what deters foraging activity would make it possible to reduce crop damage and other destruction caused by Formicidae. While many studies have shown little effect in deterring foraging activity, more study needs to be performed in relation to how mulch, and the moisture of mulch affects foraging activity. In this study, both dry and moistened mulch were placed under sources of sugar. The number of ants at each food source was counted. Results showed that while the initial number of Formicidae was fewer on the mulch food sources, the final number on each food source was similar. 

Key Words: Formicidae, ants, foraging, mulch, moisture

Fresh Water Organisms’ Susceptibility to Temperature Variation in Utah County, U.S.A. 

Amber R. D’Agostini, 1135 West 1100 North, Orem, Utah 84057 Email: 


      The purpose of this study was to see the susceptibility of fresh water organisms to temperature change in their environments. A sample of fresh water, which contained  planktonic diatoms, was taken from the inlet of the Jordan River in Saratoga Springs, UT, then taken back to a lab were it was split into three separate samples. One sample was heated, one cooled and the third remained the same as a standard. The activity level of the diatoms was recorded at every five degree increment change from the original sample. The findings confirmed that planktonic diatoms are effected by changes in their environment’s temperature level but not until the water gets considerably hot. It was also observed that the activity level of the diatoms does not decrease gradually as its environment changes but instead ceases all activity quickly at a certain degree.   

Keywords: Temperature Variation, Planktonic Diatoms, Fresh Water, Climate Change, Dissolved Oxygen

  1   2   3   4   5   6   7

Verilənlər bazası müəlliflik hüququ ilə müdafiə olunur © 2016
rəhbərliyinə müraciət