Classroom Resources: Up Up and Away

Up Up and Away

By J. Madeleine Nash

April-June 2010  (Vol. 11, No. 2)

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Discussion Questions

  1. How might mountains differ from other habitats in terms of serving as a refuge during major changes in climate?
  2. How might body size or ability to migrate affect an animal or plant’s ability to adapt in montane environments?
  3. To what extent do you imagine the rocky corridors that Millar suggests as a conservation strategy might work for pikas? What are some reasons why they might be successful? Not successful?
  4. What do you imagine are the main reasons behind the pika population crashes in the Ruby Range? What conservation strategies might minimize these crashes?
  5. Why should we be concerned about individual species loss when systems adjust and some species will “win” and others will “lose”?
  6. Why is the pika a poster child for the impact of climate change on biodiversity?
  7. Why was the American pika not listed under the Endangered Species Act in 2010 (see below for readings)?

Websites for Further Information

Pikas in the News

Key Concepts

  • Climate change
  • Montane habitats
  • Pika conservation
  • Complex interactions
  • Endangered Species Act