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.

Invasive Species Independent Research Report

Unit Plan: 
Two 45-minute lessons, separated by2 weeks

Students will know that aquatic communities change composition based on vegetation types and be able to explain the differences.



Engage: Ask students to brainstorm a list of local invasive species. If you have used any of the invasive species lessons in this module, students should know a few. Make a list on the board, and augment with provided list if necessary. Assign species based on your preference.

Explore: Students should have several days to complete research during or after school. Students can create posters, brochures, or other materials to display what they have learned. Students should be ready to present their findings to the class.

Explain: Encourage students to think about the positive aspects of invasive species to provide a more in-depth examination of invasions. Although we generally state that “invasives are bad”, it is interesting to think about whether all invasives are bad, and what that term means to the students. Students may also want to discuss what it means for an organism to be invasive, and how long it needs to reside in a location before it becomes “native”, such as the apple tree and the earthworm. Asking students to define these terms can lead to an interesting discussion on the range of changes that invasives have caused, realizing that some things may be ‘better’ while others are certainly ‘worse’.

Extend: Students can research the eradication methods available to their invasive species, and the implications of such a plan.

Evaluate: Students complete research project.

berkshire taconic

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

Privacy Policy Copyright © 2017