Samantha Soucie, Elizabeth Vear, Matthew Carroll, Megan Tierney
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While animal activity vastly differs across trophic levels, many animals share the same consequences of altering their behaviors and habitats due to human activity. Man-made constructs can dramatically alter natural animal movements, where some animals may use them to their own benefit. One example of this is that some species of birds have found that they can perch along power lines providing them safety from the threat of ground predators. We tested the hypothesis that larger animals will travel along the old roads in a reclaimed urban park more often than smaller animals who will tend to stay in the more wooded areas of the park. To test this hypothesis, we set out 10 trail cameras within the Environmental Research Area at Old River Park with 5 along old roads and 5 set up within the wooded areas of the park. We will monitor animal activity by going through the pictures taken by the cameras to see which types of animals are found more on the paved paths compared to the wooded areas. We expect that our hypothesis will be supported that larger animals will be using the paved paths more frequently than the smaller animals who will prefer to stay in the wooded areas. This finding can indicate that animals are adapting their activity to use the human created environment around them for their own benefit. These larger animals don't necessarily depend on the paved paths to be able to move around, but it may make it easier to travel around as invasive species like honeysuckle are quickly taking up all of the free space within the forest floor.
Course Project 202310 BIO 459L 01
Primary Advisor's Department
Stander Symposium, College of Arts and Sciences
"Animal Crossing: The Intersection of Roads and Wildlife" (2023). Stander Symposium Projects. 3127.