Learning about Idaho Mammals
handout exercisesuggested grade levels: 9-12

view Idaho achievement standards for this lesson

Mammals are an important part of the wildlife of Idaho and they play many different roles in Idaho's many habitats. This activity is meant to complement a unit/chapter on mammals. Students will be given the opportunity to become familiar with the Digital Atlas of Idaho and they will be guided to gain an understanding of the mammal section.

1. Students will learn how to use the Digital Atlas of Idaho.
2. Students will be able to describe the basic characteristics and biology of mammals.
3. Students will become very knowledgeable on a mammal species of their choice.
4. Students will give an oral presentation on their selected species.

1. Give students the opportunity to use the Digital Atlas. To get there: Click on Atlas Home, mouse-over Biology, then click on Mammals.
2. Encourage your students to explore the mammal section, read the information, and complete the worksheet below. For a printable pdf copy of the sample handout, click below on 'Handout Sample'.
3. Tell your students to select a mammal. They can choose their own or you can help them so they do not all choose the same species. Students will then use resources including the Digital Atlas to do research on their species. Reports should include information on the taxonomy (order, family, genus, species), range, habitat, diet, ecology, reproduction, and conservation status of their species.
4. Each student will give a short presentation on his or her animal to the class. A map from the Digital Atlas can be used to present range or distribution of a species in Idaho. Click on Atlas Home, then on Idaho Maps. To print a species range map, students can print a map from any mammal species page by clicking on the distribution map and going to file and clicking on print frame.

These are links to access the handouts and printable materials.
mam2ho.pdf | mam2AK.pdf | Mammals | Idaho Maps

Handout Sample:
The sample questions below are shown in the printed handout.

Mammals are an important part of the wildlife of Idaho and they play many different roles in Idaho's many habitats. This exercise will make you much more familiar with this interesting class of animals. Use your knowledge to answer the following questions completely and accurately.
1. What are the main characteristics that distinguish mammals from other animals?
2. What kinds of habitats can mammals live in?
3. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being endothermic compared to ectothermic? Is one necessarily better than the other?

Related Lesson Topics:
Biology: Mammals
Biology: Biology Topics

Lesson plan by James Scannell and Stefan Sommer, 2001
Idaho Achievement Standards (as of 7/2001) met by completing this activity: