Teachers Parents Students

Success Story: Tracking Wolves

By Kim Mullin

Tracking wild Minnesota wolves for your 6th-grade science project? When you live in Louisiana? As this animal enthusiast discovered, with the availability of online data and a Science Buddies Zoology Project Idea, you don't have to live "near" wolves to study them.

2012-DAKOTA_WOLFSTORY_blog.png

An exciting project about wolf movement and behavior grabs the attention of an animal-enthusiast preparing for his first science fair. The Project Idea from Science Buddies' zoology area required Dakota (pictured above) to carefully track and plot animal movement data, letting him virtually walk with the wolves.

Animal Movement Study Makes for a 'Wild' First Project

Dakota LeMaire, a sixth grade student in Louisiana, was on the hunt for a science project when he came across Science Buddies' Where the Wild Wolves Wander Project Idea. Since he is a dog- and wolf-lover, Dakota was excited to discover this unique project.

With the information provided in the Project Idea, Dakota's mom ordered a wolf tracking activity booklet and map from the International Wolf Center. Then, Dakota tapped into the online Track Wild Wolves Database to record the historical movement of two wolves that had been fitted with radio collars. The information from the wolves' collars had been recorded over a period of about two years. Dakota's job was to record and analyze the data to discover how far the wolves traveled at various times of the year.

Marking his map with different colors for each wolf in each season required attention and precision, but Dakota loved the process. "I learned that wolves travel very far in the winter," says Dakota. "It was fun to work on this with my parents, and a great opportunity to learn more about something that I already loved!"

Dakota's project was a howling success. After first place wins at both his school and parish fairs, he attended a regional science fair where he garnered third place in Animal Science. Overall, Dakota describes his first science project as "easy, fun, and a wonderful experience."

Read about other student science successes in the Science Buddies in Action area.





Science Buddies' Project Ideas in Zoology are sponsored by the Medtronic Foundation.

thumbnail
A few year ago, Laura did a science project on bacteria and water bottles. Today, she is a finalist in a global challenge and encouraging other girls to get excited about STEM!

thumbnail
You like your gelatin desserts solid and jiggly but not runny, right? A kitchen chemistry experiment reveals why certain gelatin and fruit combinations might appear at a potluck or picnic and not others. For this student and her family, the...

thumbnail
Egg science comes over-easy this time of year. Whether you are boiling eggs, dyeing eggs, or both, there are easy questions you can ask with your kids to turn the activity into a hands-on science experiment that everyone will enjoy....

thumbnail
This great guide and collection of family-friendly activities lets kids explore the history of robotics and put robotics engineering concepts to use with hands-on projects at home. Introduce Students to Robotics Engineering Robotics: DISCOVER THE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY OF THE...

thumbnail
School and family science weekly spotlight: floating eggs.

thumbnail
There was no singular moment of Big Data Bang, but we are living in and heading towards a time of seemingly endless and exponential data explosion—and the race to create solutions and strategies to help tame, store, organize, and make...



Your Science!
What will you explore for your science project this year? What is your favorite classroom science activity? Email us a short (one to three sentences) summary of your science project or teaching tip. You might end up featured in an upcoming Science Buddies newsletter!


Help With Your Science Project

The following popular posts are designed to help students at critical stages of the science project process.


You may print and distribute up to 200 copies of this document annually, at no charge, for personal and classroom educational use. When printing this document, you may NOT modify it in any way. For any other use, please contact Science Buddies.