by Michelle Kelly, Aquatic Education Specialist
Chapter 4 of the MinnAqua Fishing: Get in the Habitat! Leader’s Guide contains five lessons, all pertaining to understanding different concepts relating to Minnesota fisheries management. This chapter covers topics from fishing regulations and sportsmanship, to fisheries management techniques and tools, to our role as citizens in the management of Minnesota fisheries and aquatic resources. What role do aquatic plants play in the management of Minnesota Fisheries? Citizens, business leaders, and public officials need to understand how ecosystems function, how they support human uses, how human use impacts them, and how resource management practices and land use patterns affect long-term ecosystem health. Lesson 4:3 – Aquatic Plant Power illustrates how plants impact water temperature, sedimentation and water clarity, and what that means in terms of survival for different species of Minnesota fish.
Students will conduct experiments to explore two significant ways that aquatic habitats support fish reproduction and growth. In Part 1, students will create a fish-spawning habitat in a container and compare good and poor spawning conditions. In Part 2, students will compare water temperatures in shaded and non-shaded stream environments, investigating how shoreline vegetation creates suitable water temperatures for various types of fish.
This lesson includes two different classroom activities. Part 1 is a demonstration showing how sedimentation can impact fish spawning habitat. Part 2 provides an opportunity for students to take temperature readings over time, and practice their graphing skills.
The lesson plan includes five extensions in the “Diving Deeper” section that will both reinforce and provide greater depth, increasing your students’ appreciation and understanding for the importance of aquatic plants for fish habitat and water quality.
By combining two or three of the lessons below with Lesson 4:3 - Aquatic Plant Power, you can create a unit around the theme of aquatic plants and water quality or aquatic plants and fish habitat:
Lesson 1:4 - Water Habitat Site Study (43 pages | 8.3 MB)
Lesson 2:6 - Adapted for Habitat (35 pages | 3.5 MB)
Lesson 3:2 - Function of Aquatic Plants (24 pages | 3.5 MB)
Lesson 4:5 - Fisheries Management and You (35 pages | 3.5 MB)
Have your students access these online resources to engage in these concepts further.