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#470, v1.0 Published:
#973, v1.0 Published:

Title

Old VersionNew Version
1The nose knows: How tri-trophic interactions and natural history shape bird foraging behavior 1The nose knows: How tri-trophic interactions and natural history shape bird foraging behavior. An introduction to statistical analysis in animal behavior research

Authors

Old VersionNew Version
1Gregory Cunningham (St. John Fisher College) 1Julia Burrows ()
2Kaitlin Bonner (St. John Fisher College) 2Julia Burrows ()
3Kaitlin Bonner (St. John Fisher College)   

Description

Old VersionNew Version
1<p>The ocean is very large, and prey is not everywhere. &nbsp;Prey comes in productive patches that predators must find in order to exploit resources. &nbsp;The distribution of these resources are due to abiotic factors that concentrate energy in certain discrete areas. &nbsp;We are only beginning to fully understand how marine predators identify productive waters once encountered.</p>  1<p>These activities were designed&nbsp;to develop students&rsquo; quantitative skills, and are applicable in&nbsp;both introductory biology and upper division ecology and animal behavior courses.&nbsp;</p>
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3<p>One possible oceanic cue that can be used to identify productive waters is the airborne gas, dimethyl sulfide (DMS). &nbsp;This odor&rsquo;s precursor, DMSP, is produced in the water as a byproduct of the metabolism of phytoplankton, one of the the primary producers encountered in the ocean. &nbsp;Once DMSP is released by phytoplankton it is volatilized and enters into the air above the phytoplankton patch. It is well established that high levels of DMS are found at shelf-breaks and seamounts, thus acting as indicator of these productive waters. &nbsp;Additionally, the production of DMS increases when zooplankton prey upon phytoplankton. Not surprisingly, zooplankton, and the fish that prey upon them, are both attracted to DMS. There is evidence that some birds and mammals also detect this odor in the air above productive waters.</p>  3<p>Activity 1 focuses on how King penguins locate their foraging grounds, hundreds of kilometers from their breeding areas using dimethyl sulphide (DMS) as a chemical cue. For this activity, students generate hypotheses from background information and analyze data collected using a scaled categorical score of how King penguin adults and chicks respond to the presentation of DMS odor. Students conduct descriptive statistics, a t-test using MS Excel Analysis Toolpak, and a Mann-Whitney U test using VassarStats: Website for Statistical Computation. Students also create a bar chart to visually present results and practice properly labeling figures, in addition to interpreting statistical analyses.</p>
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5<p>The goal of this study is to determine if King penguins use DMS, a scent associated with their prey&rsquo;s prey (hence tri-trophic), as a way of finding productive waters where deep diving is likely to lead to encounters with fish. &nbsp;This study also looks at how sensitivity to DMS develops in King penguin chicks and compares the development of DMS sensitivities against a well-studied seabird, the Blue petrel.</p>  5<p>Activity 2 examines how DMS sensitives developed in the penguin&rsquo;s closest living relative, the Procellariiformes, who have a different natural history than King penguins. For this activity, students generate hypotheses from background information and analyze data from a Y-maze experiment conducted on Blue petrel chicks with either DMS or a control odor in each arm of the maze. Students create a figure, conduct a binomial statistical test using MS Excel, and interpret resulting p-values. Finally, students are asked to draw conclusions about how the differences in the natural history between the two groups of birds might impact their sensitives toward DMS in chicks versus adults.</p>
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7<p>This activity allows students to gain experience with hypothesis creation, statistical analysis, and graphical and written representations of data, as well as develop quantitative skills. &nbsp;Ultimately, students will better appreciate how odors are used by avian predators to find food in a patchy environment.</p>    
8    
9<p>The authors<b>&nbsp;</b>would like to thank Dr. Francesco Bonadonna for allowing us to use the data for the Blue petrels and Travis Godkin for reviewing this manuscript. &nbsp;KMB would also like to thank the QUBES/ESA DIG Into Data Faculty Mentoring Network facilitators and participants for advice, support, and valuable feedback.</p>    
10    
11<p>&nbsp;</p>    
12    
13<p><b>Please cite as:</b></p>    
14    
15<p>Kaitlin M. Bonner and Gregory B. Cunningham. 2018. The nose knows: How tri-trophic interactions and natural history shape bird foraging behavior.&nbsp;<cite>Teaching Issues and Experiments in Ecology</cite>, Vol. 13: Practice #8 [online].&nbsp;<a href="http://tiee.esa.org/vol/v13/issues/data_sets/bonner/abstract.html">http://tiee.esa.org/vol/v13/issues/data_sets/bonner/abstract.html</a>.&nbsp;doi:10.25334/Q4Z69H</p>   

Attachments

1 file — ./Kaitlin Bonner/CoverImage1.jpg 1 file — ./Burrows/Blue_petrels instructor.xlsx
2 link — Link to TIEE publication and teaching materials for The nose knows: How tri-trophic interactions and natural history shape bird foraging behavior (Abstract) | TIEE 2 file — ./Burrows/Blue_petrels.csv
3 file — ./Burrows/Sleeping _chicks.csv
4 file — ./Burrows/Sleeping_adults instructor.xlsx
5 file — ./Burrows/Sleeping_adults.csv
6 file — ./Burrows/Sleeping_chicks instructor.xlsx
7 file — ./Burrows/The nose knows evaluation.pdf
8 file — ./Burrows/The nose knows faculty notes.docx
9 file — ./Burrows/The nose knows reading quiz.pptx
10 file — ./Burrows/The nose knows student handout.docx
11 file — ./Burrows/The nose knows video.mpg
12 file — ./Burrows/King penguin colony_photo by Greg Cunningham.png
13 link — Link to TIEE publication and teaching materials for The nose knows: How tri-trophic interactions and natural history shape bird foraging behavior (Abstract) | TIEE