The need for transects

The following Discussion Guideline/Rubric is for the topic of transect and sampling design. You can watch the supplemental video for a simple overview in the Week 8 Module – though much less technical it will give you a visual idea of how some of these technologies look. For this assignment I would like for you to find a published peer-reviewed project that has used some sort of transect design (either flora or fauna) prior to our Week 8 lab meeting. You will elaborate on their survey design of choice and the rationale as to why they chose that method. Read the discussion guideline below to have a better idea of what you should be looking for – like the reasons why certain designs were chosen for different types of species, landscape and community levels.

Each student will need to post a summary of the biggest take-aways from a study/project that was found when researching the topic of “tracking” in an ecological setting. Follow your first post with a question that may have come up during your research. After your first post, then reply and answer a fellow student’s question.

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REMINDER Your Posts & Peer Responses

  • Fully developed responses. Responses are not sufficiently developed may not demonstrate awareness of the audience or myself (the on grading)
  • Do not use language that is inappropriate and lacks formality. This is a university course and respectful communications are expected. The responses and questions are to be appropriate to the audience.

Grading Rubric for Discussion:

50% Grade for Reading Summary in First Post

25% Grade for Posting a Thoughtful Question for Peers to Answer

25% Grade for Responding to a Peer’s Question

Main points to touch upon:

  • Discuss the need for transects when designing an ecological survey or during the initiation of a study.
  • Elaborate on three general reasons why transects/sampling can be significant in gaining an understanding of the ecological landscape for a site/project location. Examples for the role transects play include: creation of baseline knowledge of a site’s flora AND/OR fauna as well as randomize surveys in a coordinated/organized fashion so as to be confident in the quality of data collected (many ways you can do this with both flora/fauna).
  • Provide a link to a study with a short statement/summary of the kind of sampling/transect techniques that were used and for what reason they were designed in that particular method (the link can be video, news article, or peer-reviewed academic publication discussing study)
  • Hypothetically how may different habitat types change the methods for transect design

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