Biotic resistance is the ability of a native community to keep out invasive species. Land managers want to promote biotic resistance because of the harmful effects of invasive species once they have established. Several aspects of a community might make it better able to resist invasion such as high diversity, low nutrient levels, and low disturbance. In this activity, students will be able to make and test hypothesis based on invasive species success and biotic resistance. Factors promoting biotic resistance are manipulated in our BEST Bioenergy Plots and so similar questions can be asked through this activity and the data that we will be collecting through the entire GK-12 district network.
At the conclusion of the lesson, students will be able to:
- Discuss several examples of invasive species in Michigan, and why biologists are concerned about their introduction.
- Define biotic resistance and qualities of a community that can repel or facilitate invasion.
- Link biotic resistance to the treatments that are being applied to the BEST Bioenergy plots at their school district.
- Make predictions about where we’ll find the most invasive species in the plots.
- Graph and interpret data, using evidence to support their claims.
Lesson plan created by GK-12 Fellow Elizabeth Schultheis, 2011