This morning we went to Kejimkujik National Park. We did a count of deer droppings. To do this we marked out a square 10 meters by 10 meters. (6th graders and 7th graders, can you figure out what that would be in yards?) Then we all lined up at one side of the square and walked straight through the square to the far side. We counted the piles of deer droppings as we went. A pile has to have 5 pellets to count. By walking close together in a line, we looked carefully at all the land in that square. We did 5 different squares in one area of the park that our scientists check several times each year. We found 3, 9, 13, 13, and 0. The counts matched up with the pattern of past springs: one area always has a lot and one area never has any. The scientists are using this information to learn where the deer like to return at different times of year.
We did a 6 mile walk through a hemlock forest. There were areas of new growth and old growth to illustrate how a forest changes as it grows.
Dr. Khan's students: Can you guess which has more biodiversity: a young hemlock forest or an old growth hemlock forest? Can you explain your reasoning for your answer? When we skype you can tell me what you think and we can check your answers.