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Why Do Species Invade?

Queen Anne’s Lace is an invasive species because it matures faster than the surrounding plants and can outcompete other species.

Metro Waste Authority Environmental Learning Center, Runnells, Iowa

Possible Guiding, Compelling and/or Anchoring Questions

  • How does a plant that doesn’t originate here get here?
  • How might animals spread the seeds of Queen Anne’s Lace?
  • How can plants be in one area and grow in another area the next year?
  • How are other plants affected when invasive species are in the area?

Classroom Suggestions

  • Create a story, poem, song or play about how animals can transfer seeds from one plant to another area.
  • Research how different animals or insects can transfer seeds or pollen from flowers and plants.
  • Build a model of an animal that can demonstrate how seeds or pollen can be transferred in an ecosystem.

Related Resources

Iowa Core Alignment

Life Science
Disciplinary Core Idea
LS2: Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics

Credit Info

Submitted by Karla St. John and Amber Fairbanks as part of their Iowa STEM Teacher Externship experience at Iowa PBS.

Location courtesy of Metro Waste Authority.

Media produced by Iowa PBS.


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