Many fish live part of their lives in one habitat and then migrate to another habitat. Some make their migratory journeys to mature and reproduce. The Pacific salmon are spectacular examples of migrating fish. Salmon must face a myriad of hazards that serve as limiting factors in the completion of their life cycle. Limiting factors are factors that reduce the populations of living organisms. Sometimes the limiting factors are natural and sometimes they result from human intervention with natural systems.
The disappearance of salmon from the streams and rivers of the Pacific Northwest has shocked the entire region. Can wild salmon be restored? Some people say they must be. They believe the health of the entire Pacific Northwest ecosystem – and its economy – depends on wild salmon returning to spawn. Salmon are the symbol of clean streams and the wonder of animal migration.
Through the research process, students will come to an understanding of those amazing fish and why drastic measures are being considered to help salmon dilemma. Students will decide what needs to be done, if anything, about the survival of the salmon in this region.
Enduring Understandings:Progress may cause environmental changes
- Changes in the environment can affect survival of a species
- Occupations can be affected by environmental change
- Biomes support specific types of organisms
- Dams block migration of salmon
- Population may cause the environment to change
In this unit, students will
¨ Identify the stages of salmon development and life cycle.
¨ Identify factors that benefit Idaho salmon’s survival.
¨ Identify factors that are detrimental to salmon success and survival.
¨ Complete Steps I-VII (Writing and Research Model): “Topic”, “Goal Setting”, “Research”, “Organization”, “Goal Evaluation”, “Product”, and “Evaluation”.
¨ Use various resources for research: Books, articles, Internet, videos, community resources, and experts or “key players”.
¨ Apply knowledge of salmon life cycle, habitats, and basic needs to decide the best way, if any to answer the question, “Should dams be breached to save the Idaho salmon?”
Assessment:Assessment will be based on completion of all steps of the research process, goals, products, and presentation. Student understanding of unit concepts will also be assessed through class participation, research, products, and presentation.