Milkweed Lab Report

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The habitat that was observed by my lab group was various parts of a meadow. There were parts of the meadow that were exposed to bright sunlight, but others were covered by shade along the outside edges of the meadow. The meadow was covered with warm season grasses that were taller than my head. These tall grasses may give some shade to the animals living beneath them. These warm season grasses provide pathways for birds and small animals and allow for the growth of forbs. There are several abiotic factors that can influence what types of organisms can survive in this type of habitat. A few are sunlight, which has already been mentioned, temperature, wind, soil, and moisture. The wind will mainly only affect the tall grass, because I rarely…show more content…
The milkweed was more than likely common milkweed, since this type grows in fields. This type of milkweed has clusters small pink flowers, and can grow up to six feet tall. There are fruits that look like green pods on this plant, and they turn brown before they let out seeds. The milkweed is very well suited for this environment since the soil was moist, which makes a likeable habitat for this species, but the milkweed can survive without moisture as well. There is an abundant source of pollinators in this environment; therefore reproduction is very easy for the milkweed plant. If for some reason bees and butterflies stopped inhabiting this environment, the milkweed would have a hard time reproducing. They could still use seed dispersal, but it would be ineffective without the transport of pollen. If there was a drought in this area the milkweed would more than likely struggle to survive, but some would make it since they do not have to have a moist environment. More than likely, there would be some changes in adaptation of the milkweed in this scenario. The milkweed is a primary food source in the meadow environment to many insects. Meaning, if this plant disappears it would affect the whole ecosystem of the meadow, because many insects would have to find a new food source, or would not survive without the milkweed…show more content…
Crab spiders have short, wide, flattened bodies. They are called crab spiders because of the way they hold their front legs like a crab does up in the air. They can also move in a side wards motion like a crab. Some of the spiders in this species are wandering hunters, but most are ambush hunters. Meaning, they sit near flowers or trees and wait for insects to come to them, and then they capture them for food. These spiders have jaws below their head that they can use to grab their prey. Another helpful aspect for them to catch prey is how they hold their front two legs. Crabs spiders are well suited for this environment because of the way they catch their prey. They need open ground or vegetation of flowers, which is provided by the meadow environment. If all flowerings plants were depleted in this area, the causation would be a decrease of crab spiders, because most insects would leave the habitat since they have no food source. Crab spiders are more than likely predators in this environment rather than prey. The crab spiders we observed were a greenish color, therefore they are well adapted to blend into the meadow, grassy environment. Introducing more types of smaller insects would be a positive biotic factor for crab spiders, because they would have a wider range of food. Leading, to less competition among them for food. When we found our crab spiders they were near

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