Discussion on experimental design

Finish a research plan
Add the following sections to the research plan we already have so far (Maximum length for this research plan is 2 pages excludes references) :1. Methods: What species will you use? What is your study site? Describe your experimental design. Consider what controls are you using, what is your sample size. How are you analyzing the data? (will you categorize your data? or transform them in any way?, if that is not the case, you can say data will not be categorized). Looking at your type of variables, and considering the stats you have seen in class, what analysis would you choose? What is your null and alternative hypothesis?2. Expected Results: Brief paragraph showing what you expect to find based on your hypothesis.3. Intellectual Merit: The Intellectual Merit criterion encompasses the potential to advance knowledge and understanding within its own field or across different fields. In other words, what this project says about you? Is this a novel question? A novel project? To what extent do the proposed activities suggest and explore creative, original, or potentially transformative concepts? Is the plan for carrying out the proposed activities well-reasoned, well-organized, and based on a sound rationale?4. Broader Impacts: How society and or particular groups will benefit from your research? How it can contribute to the achievement of specific, desired societal outcomes. For example, if you propose to work in a third world country you could propose to include students from local colleges or schools, explain why that would be beneficial. Another example. May be your research will inform a policy that should be taken to mitigate an activity that could have detrimental environmental effects. Or may be your study advances the knowledge of a particular species and that could be applied to other species which are endangered. Or may be your project could help to protect a determined area. Although the sections e and f could sound a bit weird, consider that these sections are required in most of national and international grant applications! List of referencesFormat:a. Standard 8.5″ x 11″ page sizeb. Times New Roman font for all text, Cambria Math font for equations, Symbol font for non-alphabetic characters (it is recommended that equations and symbols be inserted as an image), no smaller than 11-point, except text that is part of an image 1″ margins on all sides, no text inside 1″ margins (no header, footer, name, or page number)c. No less than single-spacing (approximately 6 lines per inch). Do not use line spacing options such as “exactly 11 point,” that are less than single spaced.d. Students are strongly encouraged to proofread and upload their documents early to ensure they are format-compliant. Projects that are not compliant with these format requirements will be returned without review.e. The maximum length of the Graduate Research Plan Statement is two (2) pages. These page limits do not include all references, but it does include citations, charts, figures, images.f. Unlimited number of cited references.g. References in text numbered. Cited references: Authors. Year. Title. Journal. Volume. Pages.ExampleIn text:Hummingbird bills are also being shaped by sexual selection through male-male combat^1In cited references1. Rico-Guevara A, Araya-Salas M. 2015. Bills as daggers? A test for sexually dimorphic weapons in a lekking hummingbird species. Behavioral Ecology. 26: 21-29My team’s research plan is attachedGuidelines is attached

Frigatebird’s Mating Display

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Frigatebirds are unique aquatic birds that are known for their bright red chests. Their chests are able to determine, “age-class (saturation), parasite infection (lightness) and mated status (all), together with indications of condition and testosterone dependency of ornament expression.”(Madsen, V., 2007) Males have a bright red pouch called the gular sac, and this inflates when attempting to attract a female. While their red gular sac is very eye-catching, they “produce a rapid warble vocalization that forms a prominent part of their courtship display.”(Juola, F. A., 2011) This means that females seem to be more attracted to the sounds they can produce. Gular sacs are essential, since they allow males to clack their bills and use them as drums to perform their love call. They are able to provide us with information about their acoustic frequency, “either fundamental frequency—the frequency of the lowest harmonic in a harmonic series—or peak frequency, the frequency of maximum amplitude.” (Juola, F. A., 2011) Their sound frequency depends on a box of a certain volume that “might represent gular pouches of slightly varying volumes, as some pouches are a bit more heart-shaped than others.” (Madsen, V., 2004). This is our question for our project: Does the male’s drumming sound and vocal pitch enhance attractiveness more than the inflation of the gular sac for a successful courtship? Frigatebirds are good models because they are the species that are the most well-known for their bright red gular pouch. While it is true that the gular sac plays a huge role in successful courtship, there has been recent studies that state that their vocalizations and drumming sounds from the gular sac are just as attractive or even more attractive to the female. We hypothesized that female Frigatebirds will be more attracted to higher pitch drumming sounds in a potential mating partner rather than the inflation of the gular sac because it is a better indicator of survival and production of viable offspring. We predicted that when a female Frigate Bird chooses a male bird with a high pitch drumming sound as mating partner, it means that male bird is in a good body condition.
























  • Madsen, V., Valkiūnas, G., Iezhova, T. A., Mercade, C., Sanchez, M., & Osorno, J. L. (2007). Testosterone levels and gular pouch coloration in courting magnificent frigatebird (Fregata magnificens): variation with age-class, visited status and blood parasite infection. Hormones and Behavior, 51(1), 156-163.
  • Juola, F. A., & Searcy, W. A. (2011). Vocalizations reveal body condition and are associated with visual display traits in great frigatebirds (Fregata minor). Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, 65(12), 2297-2303.
  • Madsen, V., Balsby, T. J., Dabelsteen, T., & Osorno, J. L. (2004). Bimodal signaling of a sexually selected trait: gular pouch drumming in the Magnificent Frigatebird. The Condor, 106(1), 156-160.

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