Patches and Barriers

A patch contains an interior space as well as an edge. By splitting a patch it creates a larger edge space which increases the amount of edge species but is a detriment to species that need to inhabit the interior. Also by cutting through a patch it creates a barrier that causes a disruption in any system that had been occurring in the patch. (Forman, “Landscape Ecology Principles”)

A road running through a forest is an example of a barrier through a patch. The road prevents animals from traveling from one side of the patch to another, or at least makes it dangerous. It also increases the amount of edge space as the land next to the road turns into edge.

In order to prevent the disruption of patches people need to pay closer attention to the environment that they are building through. Also patches need to be preserved where possible or corridors need to be created between them.

Temperature, Wind, and Light

In discussion last Tuesday we went to Clemons Library and observed how the temperature, wind, and light affected the stairs on the side of the building. We noticed that different areas received more light then others which lead to a range of temperatures in materials around the building. For example the railing of the staircase absorbed a greater amount of heat than the brick and concrete that surrounded it. Also windows of the library, even when in the shade, were much warmer to the touch than the brick and concrete.

We then took exact readings of the temperature, wind, and light levels. The temperature and light level fluctuated depending on the amount of sun the space was receiving. The wind was blowing harder at the bottom of the stairs and basically remained constant as we moved up the stairs.

The formation of these different climate zones in such a small space have a great impact on how the space feels. We are constantly moving through these different zones when we interact with our outdoor spaces of the structure. They also effect the feel of the interior of the building depending on the time of year, either allowing the heat or the cool to enter the building, or protecting it from the outdoor temperature (for example the shade created by the trees).

Climate Systems

Climate systems organize themselves in large scale patterns and these different patterns change during the transition from summer to winter. This pattern can be seen as an emergent system as the random movement of the high and low pressure systems creates a pattern that can be seen across the globe. This system can lead to other systems that present the emergence theory such as hurricanes.

Discussion Solar Exercise

moscow sun

cville sun

During discussion we mapped the sun in Moscow and in Charlottesville. First we found that the latitude of Moscow is 55 degrees north and the longitude is 37 degrees east. We then found that the equinox is 35 degrees by subtracting 55 from 90. Then to find the solstices we first added 23.5 degrees to 35 and then subtracted 23.5 degrees which means the solstices are at 57.5 degrees and 11.5 degrees.

After mapping the path of sun we found that at 4:00PM on July 5th (my birthday) the altitude of the sun in Moscow will be 32 degrees and the azimuth will be 265 degrees. Then on January 17 (Samantha’s birthday) the altitude will be zero degrees and the azimuth will be 230 degrees.

Assignment One-The Bay Game

Name: Arianna Filipour    UVA Email:

Course Instructor: William Sherman TA (If applicable): Ben Hartigan

Please mark the appropriate sentence that describes your experience with the UVA Bay Game.

________ I have played the UVA Bay Game before.  Number of times_______________

____X___ I have NOT played the UVA Bay Game before.

Please respond to the following questions as completely as your current knowledge of the subject allows.

1. List the variables and concepts that you think are part of the Chesapeake Bay watershed system (You can list as many as you would like. Use additional space if needed).

  • Pollution
  • Run-off
  • Fish, crabs, oysters, other animals
  • Birds
  • Fishing boats
  • Water quality
  • Tourists-boats
  • Plants
  • Introduction of new animal and plant species
  • Weather
  • Temperature

2. Describe the relationship and interaction between these variables. Be specific. For example, if you state that A influences B, indicate the direction and nature of the influence (i.e., A transforms B in this way, A increases/decreases B, etc.).

When it rains run-off is created as water runs off of impermeable surfaces, carrying contaminates that have been sitting on these surfaces, into the bay. This increases the pollution level in the bay which is already increased by engine exhaust created by the fishing boats and boats that the tourists are driving. This pollution then has a negative impact on the ecosystem of the bay including fish, crabs, oysters, plants, and other animals and plants. However, the animals and plants are what increase the fishing boats and tourists. The ecosystem is also affected by the introduction of new animal and plant species which can have a negative effect on the existing ecosystem. The temperature of the environment also affects the ecosystem because if it rises or falls beyond a certain point it can be a detriment to the ecosystem.

3. On a separate piece of paper, diagram (either free-hand or with a software program) the variables you described above demonstrating the relationships and interactions that influence the watershed. Whether you choose to draw your diagram free-hand or with the aid of a software program, a hardcopy of this diagram should be turned in to your instructor by Friday September 1, 2010.

Breathing System

Breathing can be viewed as a very simple system. The stock of this system is the amount of air that is in your lungs at any given time, the inflow is the air that you breath in, and the outflow is the carbon dioxide that you breath out. However, there normally are other factors in this system such as when you breath in polluted air. The body is forced to deal with these pollutants by either absorbing them into your body or releasing them with the carbon dioxide as you exhale.

Dinosaur Juice

Sunlight travels to your body through the consumption of food. The system shows the flow of sunlight from the sun, to the wheat, its conversion into to cereal, and then your body’s intake of the sunlight as you consume the cereal. This diagram is a simplified version of the system.