Final Project: Primate Observation (200 points). Due Wednesday, May 9, at the beginning of class
For this assignment, you will make observations of primates much like Jane Goodall would do. However, the primates you observe will be in an artificial environment (the zoo).
Your paper should focus on a specific group of primates (your choice) and report on behaviors you observe. After making the observations, do some background reading on that species. The introduction should include a brief description of the species (where they live, group size, behaviors in the wild, etc.).
Your goal is to see if the behaviors you observe are the same or different from the wild.
BE SURE THAT THE ANIMALS YOU ARE OBSERVING ARE PRIMATES
To gather your data:
Purchase a ticket and conduct a two-hour focal animal observation of a primate species at a zoo of your choice. To get credit, you must attach the entrance receipt to the final paper. Choose an adult, juvenile, or infant that lives within a social group for your observations and study contacts with other individuals, feeding behavior, and play.
In a table you make before you go to the zoo, list all relevant behaviors that are exhibited by this single animal during your observation period and tally the number of times each behavior occurs. Remember, your paper should include an introduction of the basic facts about your selected species, a methods section, a results section, and a conclusion. The introductory material can be obtained from the Internet or from published books or articles that are written as general overviews of the primates or of mammals.
Structure of your paper
Title page and paper check list*
i. Abstract [100 word summary of the paper]
I. Introduction [.5 pages]
What did you research; provide a thesis statement]
II. Background [3 pages]
Provide information on the primate from scholarly sources.
Include details regarding:
b. Diet and seasonal variation
c. Migration and range
d. Social structure and reproductive units
e. Social behaviors, including competition for mates, hierarchies, learning.
f. What are the main topics of research on this primate?
The text must include citations for any information derived from a reference (surname, year, page number). Failure to include citations may result in an F.
III. Methods [1 page]
There are two main methods:
Diary: observations are noted on paper with dates, times, and specific observations of behavior.
Checklist: Based on what you have learned from the literature, develop a worksheet of expected behaviors. Note the date, time, and individual information as it is observed. Note variations, deviations, or unexpected behaviors.
Non-systematic: record behaviors as they occur.
Focal animal: Watch one animal for a determined amount of time. At least two focal animals must be observed. These can the then be compared and contrasted.
IV. Narrative [3 pages]
Describe in detail what you observed, and analyze those behaviors. What might be the impact of being kept in a zoo; do you think that the animals? behaviors in the wild might be the same or different? Can you see evidence of social hierarchy, family membership, differences in behavior between males/females? Be sure to describe the primates? zoo environment (number of members in the group, estimate the area, types of vegetation within the enclosure, furniture/toys, feeding areas, and water areas).
V. Conclusions/Results [.5pages]
Report what you learned from this exercise about primate observation.
Your paper must include a minimum of three scholarly, peer-reviewed journal articles as references for your paper.
a. Records and observation notes (raw data; required)
b. Map of native habitat [optional]
c. Photographs [optional]
**The primate I chose to observe is Orangutans**
**I already went to the zoo to collect the data, but I still need the compare and contrast to be in my paper. You can make up anything for the observation, as long as it’s believable.**
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