CORAL CAM LESSON PLANS
CREATED BY THE
TEACHER ADVISORY GROUP

Coral Cam Web Site

WHO EATS WHOM IN A BERMUDIAN CORAL REEF?     Lyndsey Chell

OBJECTIVE: 1.Students will be able to find out about feeding relationships on a coral reef.
                            2.Students wil be able to develop a food chain and food web using coral reef
                               animals and plants

AGE GROUP:   Making a food chain is suitable for students age 8years +. The construction
                               of a food web is higher level and could be aimed at 10-14 years depending
                               on ability.

BACKGROUND

On the Bermudian coral reefs all the living things feed on each other. The energy obtained from sunlight moves from plants such as phytoplankton and algae to the first animal and onto the second and so on.
However animals do not just feed on one type of food, they feed on a variety. In a place like a coral reef there are many different feeding relationships which are connected together to form a
food web.
The Coral Website contains information about just a few common animals and plants that are found on a Bermudian coral reef.
This list contains some of them that can be used by students to make a food chain and food web.

Plants and Algae
Algal turf
Jointed seaweed
Phytoplankton (plant plankton)

Protista
Zooplankton (animal plankton)

Animals
Corals
Finger coral
Common Sea Fan
Brain Coral
 

Sponge
Purple sea urchin
Squid

Fish
Spot light parrotfish
Silver porgy
Surgeon fish
Yellow fin grouper
Blue tang
Nassau grouper
Four eyed Buterfly fish
Barracuda

Instructions for Teachers

Activity 1: Making a food chain

1.Each student will need to start with a horizontal row of 4 squares either downloaded from the website if they are going to write in their own food chain OR if the facility is available the student can wordprocess their organisms directly onto the grid on the website.

2.The student needs to choose a plant to start their food chain and either writes or wordprocesses the name into box 1.All the information can be found in the plants and animals section in the website. If all the feeding relationships are not available then teachers may find the

Who is eating whom on a Bermudan coral reef?

Coral polyps eat zooplankton.
Zooplankton eat phytoplankton
Spotlight parrotfish, Surgeonfish, Blue tang and Four eyed butterfly fish eat algae
Barracuda eat fish
Nassau groupers and Silver porgies eat squid and fish fry
Squid eat young fish called fish fry
Fish fry eat zooplankton

3.Next the student chooses a suitable herbivore from the website that would feed on that plant and puts its name into the second box. Then a primary carnivore is chosen that feeds on the herbivore and its name entered into the third box. Finally a secondary carnivore that feeds on the carnivore is selected and placed in the last box.

4.The Coral food chain is now completed by the student drawing in arrows showing the flow of energy from the plant up through the chain to the top carnivore.

5.It should look somethng like this.      

     Phytoplankton--->Zooplankton--->Fish fry--->Silver porgies

 

 Activity 2: Making a food web

1.Once the students have made their food chain they can be reminded that animals eat a variety of foods. The information from the Coral website and Who is eating whom?' will help them make a food web, which they can then put into a grid downloaded from this website or word processed directly. The finished food web should look something like this.

coral3

2.Occasionally something goes wrong with a food web and a link is damaged. The students need to imagine what will happen to the food web if some of the links are missing e.g

(a)What will happen to the number of spotlight parrotfish if the Silver porgies are killed suddenly by a disease?

(b)What will happen to the numbers of Silver porgies if the numbers of squid suddenly decrease? 

BBSR and TCOE Coral Web Site Team 1999      http://www.coexploration.org/bbsr/coral
Funded by a grant from the Goldman Foundation