Hudson River Ecology

How does the Hudson River ecosystem respond to different types of changes over time? Are these changes permanent, and how will the ecosystem respond? Our curriculum addresses these questions through modules which combine unique and engaging Hudson River data collected by the Cary Institute and other scientists, investigations, readings, and visualizations.

Ecosystems in Action: Population & Community Dynamics

Grades: 
9-12
6-8
Topic(s): 
Water
Biodiversity
Nutrients & Energy
Nature of Science

How do populations change in the Hudson River ecosystem, and how do these changes affect the larger ecological community? Using video, data, and hands-on investigations, students will explore how food webs and the abiotic resources and conditions of the ecosystem have changed in response to the zebra mussel invasion. This case study allows students to understand community level changes, which they can then apply to other systems.  

  • Day 1: Introduction to Zebra Mussels

    Students will know what lives in the Hudson River, and will be able to create a food web drawing to represent the organisms living in the river.

  • Day 2: Exploring Populations

    Students will know how the zebra mussel invasion affected the food web of the Hudson River and be able to explain at least two connections within the food web that were affected using evidence from

  • Day 3: Exploring Abiotic Changes

    Students will know how the zebra mussel has changed the Hudson River ecosystem and be able to explain how a biotic change affects the abiotic conditions in the Hudson River.

  • Day 4: Graphing and interpreting zebra mussel data

    Students will know how the zebra mussel invasion has changed the Hudson River and be able to use graphed data to explain the history of these changes. 

Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies | Millbrook, New York 12545 | Tel (845) 677-5343

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