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OrnithologyResearchFinalProject/Presentation
In our current unit of bird ecology, we have been looking specifically at some of the
incredible adaptations that Albatross have that enable them to survive and thrive in a very
unique way. Now it is your turn to study a bird of your choice and report to the class about
all of its incredible features, lifestyle, and skills. This project will take the form of a
research project / class PowerPoint or Prezi presentation. Each student in class will study a
different bird, so be sure to get instructor approval before completing your project.
Getting Started: First, get to know about your bird. Read as much information about it as
you can find. Use a variety of sources both the Internet and/or the library; use a good
search engine, an encyclopedia, and/or individual books on birds/animals.
As you're reading about your bird, take notes on key information, such as where your bird
lives (its range), what type of biome it lives in (its habitat), how big your bird gets, what it
looks like, what it eats, what eats it, how long it lives, etc.
Topics to Research and Include in Your Presentation: When you compile your presentation,
try to answer the following questions (Note: not all of these things may be known for all
birds):
The Bird's Name: Common and scientific name(s). What do the names mean? Sometimes
this will tell you something important or interesting about the bird. For example, platypus
means "flat-footed." For some birds, there are special names for a baby, a male, a female,
or a group. Include them. Your bird's scientific name should consist of a capitalized genus
name and a lower-case species name. For example, the platypus is Ornithorhynchus
anatinus.
Anatomy/Appearance: What does your bird look like? Include pictures! How big is it? What
shape is its body? What does an average one weigh? Does it have specialized feathers of
any kind? If so what are they, and that are they used for? Describe its unique anatomy
(the mouth, head, neck, tail, etc.) Are its legs relatively long or short? Why? Does it molt
as it grows? How/When?
Flight/Migration: How does your bird move? Does it fly? If so how far/fast? Does it run? If so
how far/fast? Is it slow-moving or fast-moving? Why is this movement important to its
survival? Does it migrate? How far? When? Describe any unique features of its locomotion.
Diet: What does your bird eat and how does it get its food? Is it an herbivore, carnivore,
omnivore, scavenger, or something else? Is there something unusual/unique in the way
your bird eats? (For example, the flamingo sieves its food from mud while its head is
upside down under the water.) Where is your animal in the food web (is it a top predator,
like the grizzly bear, is it at the base of the food web, like krill, or is it somewhere in the
middle)? Does it migrate long distances to find adequate food?
Habitat and Range: What type of biome does your bird prefer (does it live in the desert,
swamp, tundra, tropical rainforest, pond, or other habitat)? Maybe it uses different
habitats during different times of the year. Where in the world does it live? List the

continent(s), country/countries, and/or smaller areas that it lives in. Tell when it is there
and why it is there.
Adaptations: What are the adaptations of your bird to its environment? For example, the
giraffe's neck is an adaptation for obtaining leaves that are high off the ground. It also has
tough lips to avoid thorns on its main food source. What special adaptations does your bird
have that help it survive?
Life Cycle/Reproduction: Give information on the bird's life cycle and reproduction. How
long do these birds typically live? Describe the nesting, egg laying, incubation, and babycare behaviors. What roles do the parents take on? How many eggs are laid each year and
how many young usually hatch? Describe any interesting courtship and mating behaviors
that your bird species has.
Behavior: Describe interesting features of your bird's behavior. For example: Is there
evidence of flocking or is it a solitary animal? Does it burrow underground, nest in caves,
etc. Does it hibernate, or migrate in cold weather? Is it nocturnal or diurnal? Is it known to
be specifically intelligent? How so?
Defense/Offense: How does it defend itself and its young/vulnerable and/or attack other
animals? Does it use camouflage, mimicry, song/calls, distractions, flight, aggression,
speed, stealth, and/or something else?
Enemies: What animals eat or otherwise kill or harm your bird? Are there any specific
pests, diseases, or parasites that harm your bird? Any predators that your bird has to
watch out for?
Species Survival Status: Is this bird species in danger of extinction? If so, why? Has it lost
habitat, lost a food source, or has it been overhunted? What are its estimated population
numbers? Are its numbers increasing or decreasing? Why? Is it an invasive species
anywhere in the world?
Something Special: Is there anything special about this bird? This can often be the best
part of the report, where you describe interesting topics. For example, are there legends
about the bird? Feel free to show video clips of your bird (up to 5 minutes maximum)
where your explain different aspects of your birds and its behavior that you show.
Classification: How is this bird classified and what birds are it closely related to on the
evolutionary tree of life? In the Linnaean system of classification, organisms are classified
into a Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and species. For example, elk are
classified as follows: Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Chordata, Class Mammalia (mammals),
Order Artiodactyla, Suborder Ruminantia (ruminants), Family Cervidae (the deer family),
Genus Cervus, species elaphus (Genus and species names are italicized and species is
written in lower-case).
Citing Your References: Include a bibliography, list all of your references. Formats for each
type of publication follows:
Web Site: Author(s) if appropriate. Title of Site or web page. URL of site, date of publication
(the earliest copyright year listed). Date of Access.
Book: Author(s). Title of book. Edition. Location of publisher: Name of Publisher, year of
publication.

Encyclopedia: Title of encyclopedia, volume of encyclopedia used. Location of publisher:


Name of Publisher, year of publication, pages where the article is located.
Magazine or Journal: Author(s). "Title of article." Name of magazine, Volume.issue (date):
pages where the article is located.
Author(s) are listed last name first, first name or initials (as cited in the publication).
When you finish your presentation send it/share it/attach it to jferguson@pps.net
This project is due on Monday June 1st (Seniors) and Friday June 5th (Juniors).
Senior presentations will be on June 1st and 3rd and Junior presentations will be
on June 5th and 8th

Total Points Available: 75

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