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Lab Predator Prey Interactions: Bean Simulation

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Lab # 1
Predator Prey Interactions: Bean simulation

Enviornmental Science November 1, 2014


To keep record of the effects that the predator (coyote) and prey (mice) have on the population of each other over time.


Interactions between predators and their prey are important in 1) determining the population of both predators and prey and 2) determining and maintaining the structure of a community. Many factors enter into the ultimate outcome of predator-prey interactions. Using a simulation of predator-prey interaction including mice and coyote will be conducted to determine population over time in their habitat.


* Shallow plate (the field) * Beans (the mice) * Spoons (the coyotes)


1. Shake the plate to randomly distribute the mice. 2. Swipe the spoon through the field and capture mice. 3. Record data
Minimum mice per generation = 10
Maximum mice per generation = 100
Mice double every generation OR hit 100
Capture less than 5 mice and coyote dies
Capture 5 or more and coyote survives
5 or more survive
6-9 mice = 1 baby
10-14 mice = 2 babies
15 or more = 3 babies
Minimum coyote = 1
Maximum coyote = 17


Quantitative Results

Generation Number | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | Initial Mice | 10 | 18 | 30 | 48 | 76 | 100 | 100 | 20 | 10 | 14 | 18 | 12 | 10 | 10 | 10 | 10 | 10 | 10 | 10 | 10 | Initial Coyote | 1 | 1 | 1 | 2 | 2 | 4 | 12 | 17 | 1 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 1 | 2 | 2 | 1 | 2 | 3 | 1 | 2 | # of mice caught by each coyote (#1 - # 12) | 1 | 1 | 3 | 6 | 6 | 8 | 12 | 13 | 4 | 3 | 5 | 7 | 3 | 5 | 5 | 3 | 6 | 5 | 3 | 6 | 6 | | 2 | | | | 4 | 5 | 12 | 7 | 2 | | | 5 | 2 | | 3 | 2 | | 4 | 3 | | 3 | | 3 | | | | | | 12 | 10 | 2 | | | | 2 | | | 4 | | | 2 | | | | 4 | | | | | | 11 | 9 | 3 | | | | 3 | | | | | | | | | | 5 | | | | | | | 10 | 4 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 6 | | | | | | | 8 | 1 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 7 | | | | | | | 9 | 2 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 8 | | | | | | | 8 | 1 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 9 | | | | | | | 7 | 1 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 10 | | | | | | | 4 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 11 | | | | | | | 3 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 12 | | | | | | | 2 | | | | | | | | | | | | | | Captured Mice | 1 | 3 | 6 | 10 | 13 | 47 | 90 | 20 | 3 | 5 | 12 | 10 | 5 | 8 | 9 | 6 | 9 | 8 | 6 | 9 | Surviving Mice | 9 | 15 | 24 | 38 | 63 | 53 | 10 | 0 | 7 | 9 | 6 | 2 | 5 | 2 | 1 | 4 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 1 | Surviving Coyote | 0 | 0 | 1 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 12 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 2 | 0 | 1 | 2 | 0 | 1 | 2 | 0 | 1 | 2 | Coyote offspring | 0 | 0 | 1 | 1 | 2 | 8 | 9 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 2 | 0 | 1 | 1 | 0 | 1 | 1 | 0 | 1 | 1 |

Qualitative Results

As the coyote ate all the mice the mice population vanished which also drastically affected the coyote population because without the prey the predator could not survive.


In conclusion the first population to show an increase in numbers was the mice population because they multiply faster when they know there is a predator, in nature all the type of mice might not survive but only the strongest and wiser will, which is why the mice population (the prey) were the highest in population. Over the course of the 20 years you I noticed the amount of mice captured and surviving increased and towards the end of the generations they remained low but steady because those are the mice that will continue to survive in nature. The population of the coyote remain about the same throughout time with only slight changed which is normal. As the population in coyote decreased the mouse increased and visa versa because the predator rely on the prey. The graph which represents surviving coyote vs. captured mice best illustrates the relationship between changes in mice population relative to changes in coyote population because in this graph you can clearly see “predators increase when prey are abundant, prey are driven to low numbers by predation, the predators decline, and the prey recover, ad infinitum.”

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