Smartie Lab Analysis: The total area of my ecosystem was six feet, but the area we sampled was four feet. We had six types of each smartie: 4 green, 5 orange, 10 purple, 7 red, 5 white, and 14 yellow. In our sampled area we had 3 green, 0 orange, 5 purple, 2 red, 0 white, and 7 yellow. We had 4. 25 organisms per total area that was the density. Our relative density was 8. 88% green, 11. 11% orange, 22. 22% purple, 15. 55% red, 11. 11% white, and 3. 45% yellow. The frequency of each organism was 75% green, 0% orange, 50% purple, 25% red, 0% white, and 75% yellow.
The relative frequency of each organism was 33% green, 0% orange, 22% purple, 11% red, 0% white, and 33% green. The coverage of each type of organism was 18. 83%. The importance value of each organism was 34. 24 for green, 9. 98 for orange, 30. 35 for purple, 19. 79 for red, 9. 98 for white, and 32. 43 for yellow. The rank of my organism’s importance from highest to lowest is: green, yellow, purple, red, then white and orange. My population estimate for part II is 11. 66 yellow smarties. My % error for population estimate is 16. 71%.
We used a line transect for this lab, and I think most of these calculations could be more applied to plants, since they are stationary and do not move, like smarties, which do not move. This is more difficult to compare to animals since animals move, and may react to being captured and recaptured. Conclusion: The results of my simulation show that around 12 yellow smarties belong to my population of smarties. However, we actually had 14. The results were pretty close, and this demonstrates that the capture and recapture system is a pretty decent system in obtaining population estimates.
However it is important to keep in mind that smarties are not stationary and cannot react to being captured in ways that animals and some plants can. The importance values between my transect and my actual data are pretty close, however in actuality yellow was the most important, not green. A quadrat would be more advantageous over a transect in situations where there are more types of organisms, or the organism can move. I think there can be issues with marking organisms after capture, since the organism may react to being capture and seriously make a difference on the population estimate, leading observers to obtaining incorrect data.
Suggestions for further investigations: I would change this lab to including more exact numbers for smarties, so that percentages could come out more clean and would be easier to add and divide and such. I would also use multiple trials, with different bags of smarties, and with different transects to have more broad data. I would use different kinds of transects, as well as a quadrat to see what kinds of results those give me too. Finally, I would compare all the results from each kind of trial and average them out.
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