Biology Resources

  • NatureWatch

http://www.naturewatch.ca/english/

What – Do you want to get outside and explore nature, while helping to protect the environment?  NatureWatch lets you become a citizen scientist, and contribute to real research into the effects of climate change and other impacts on biodiversity.  You can choose to collect data on frogs, ice, plants, or worms in your own neighbourhood, and learn important scientific observation and data collection skills to become a responsible steward of the environment.  And best of all, its easy for everyone to take part!

  • Journey North

http://www.learner.org/jnorth/

What – Join in a global study of wildlife migration and seasonal change.  With the latest news on migratory species, maps, amazing videos of wild animals, and ways for you to contribute to our scientific understanding of migration routes, this site is worth checking out.  There are even teacher resources, and a free citizen science app you can download on your phone!

  • Tree of Life

http://tolweb.org/tree/phylogeny.html

What – A collaborative effort of biologists around the world, this site provides amazingly detailed information about the diversity of organisms on Earth, both living and extinct, their evolutionary history and characteristics.

  • Species At Risk Public Registry

http://www.sararegistry.gc.ca/default_e.cfm

What – The Government of Canada’s official site for news, information, and documents related to species at risk in Canada.  This web site has been designed to help you better understand Canada’s approach to protecting and recovering species at risk, learn about species at risk and what’s being done to help them, and get involved in decision making and recovery activities.

  • Nature Nation

http://www.naturecanada.ca/member_login.asp

What – Become part of a global network of people who love and respect nature. Join the Nature Nation, the online community of Nature Canada. You’ll have access to monthly newsletters, action alerts, nature screensavers and more.

  • Worldometers

http://www.worldometers.info/

What – Check out real-time world statistics on everything from the global population, to the number of emails sent today, to the days left to the end of oil.  These thought-provoking numbers may help you see our world in a new light, and understand it a little better.  And be sure to click on the info buttons to see where the numbers come from.  You can also try updating your computer clock for statistics in the future.

  • Ecological Footprint

http://www.myfootprint.org/en/

What – Ecological footprints measure humanity’s demands on nature.  Do you know what your ecological footprint is?  Take this online quiz to find out, then compare your results to other peoples from around the world, and learn how you can reduce your footprint.

  • Science of Gardening

http://www.exploratorium.edu/gardening/feed/index.html

What – Get the dirt on dirt, and everything else in a garden.  Venture into the wickedly wonderful world of carnivorous plants, peek into the secret lives of flowers, and learn the lore and legend behind your favourite garden veggies.  Packed with interactives, videos, and articles, this site from the Exploratorium is blooming with gardening science to digest.

  • Skulls – California Academy of Sciences

http://www.calacademy.org/exhibits/skulls/index.html

What – The skull of an animal can tell a scientist a great story about its evolution, structure, function, and lifestyle.  At this website you can check out rotating 3D skull graphics, fascinating skull facts, and skull-inspired artwork. Come in, explore, and get inside our heads.

  • Cloning

http://www.questacon.edu.au/indepth/cloning/

What – Cloning is featured in many science fiction movies, but what is it really? This site from Questacon explains how cloning works, and introduces you to Dolly the cloned sheep, and CC the cloned cat.  There are also good summaries of the arguments for and against cloning, as well as links to plenty of additional info.

  • Microbial Life Educational Resources

http://serc.carleton.edu/microbelife/index.html

What - Single-celled microbial life is found almost everywhere – in your digestive tract, in the air, in the soil and in water. But the coolest (or should I say hottest) places they are found seem completely inhospitable to life, such as hydrothermal vents, or boiling hotsprings at the bases of volcanoes. The inhabitants of such extreme environments are called the extremophiles.  Discover the ecology, diversity, and evolution of these amazing micro-organisms.  Teacher resources are available too!

  • Extremophiles in Kamchatka

http://www.exploratorium.edu/kamchatka/index.html

What – Journey to Eastern Siberia with a team of biologists, and see how researchers work in dangerous hotspring environments, meet the organisms that live in such extreme places, and find out how these micro-organisms are linked to a Martian meteorite debate. This site from the Exploratorium has great videos, slide shows and even instructions for making your own colourful bacterial garden at home.

  • The Lives of Extremophiles

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/nature/lives-of-extremophiles.html

What – Diana Northup works with SLIME (Subsurface Life in Mineral Environments), a group of cave scientists studying microbes that thrive in environments that would terminate humans in seconds flat. She searches for bacteria that gobble up hydrogen sulfide gas and other noxious chemicals like we do bread and water. These bizarre creatures may hold clues not only to the earliest life on Earth but to the possibility of life in outer space.  Read about Diana’s job as a microbiologist, and why she thinks life on the edge is where its at.

  • Frozen Frogs

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/nature/frozen-frogs.html

What – An amazing video about the Northern Wood Frog, which is found across most of Alberta.  These little frogs survive the winter by freezing solid, like little popsicles! Cryobiology is the study of life at temperatures too low to support life. To learn how this works, see Frozen Alive.

  • Cooperating Orcas

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3xmqbNsRSk

What – For an amazing demonstration of power of cooperation, check out this video which shows a pod of Orcas working together to hunt a seal on an ice floe. Can you think of other examples where animals cooperate to accomplish things that they couldn’t do alone?

  • Predator or Prey?  Stereo Vision Activity

http://www.csiro.au/helix/sciencemail/activities/StereoVision.html

What – Find out how your eyes work together during this fun activity, and why predators rely on stereo vision to catch their prey.  For more info about stereo vision, check out Two Seeing Eyes = Two Views!

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