Duma (2005)


Concept featured in film: Competition; Carrying Capacity; Wildlife

Location of clip: DVD: Chapters 1-2


Play Flickclip Here

Summary of clip: This clip starts in the grasslands of Africa showing clips of different native animals. Our focus comes upon the Cheetah babies and their mother. Suddenly the animals become aware of a danger in the area, a hunting lion. The cheetah mother approaches the lion and although we do not witness it, it is assumed that the mother cheetah is killed and the babies were next in line. One cheetah cub however escapes, wanders onto the paved roadway and gets "rescued" by a boy (Xan) and his father. Xan immediately falls in love with the cheetah cub and his father heads off the possible over-attachment by immediately preparing Xan for the release of the cub back into the wild when he is well enough.

Connection of flickclip to the concept: The interaction between different species in the wild is such that there is a constant struggle for resources. The lion knows that by removing this cheetah and her newly born offspring more resources would be available to him. Also, although Xan and his father mean well by rescuing the baby cheetah, they may be interfering with the nature. His father recognizes this to some extent teaching his son that the cheetah will need to be released when he is ready.

Suggestions to teachers:
1. Suggested questions for students when viewing the clip:

a. What would happen in the grasslands if the lion did not regulate the numbers of the other predator cats?

b. What are the limiting factors for these animals?

c. In what ways do human interactions affect the natural regulation of populations? (including their own)

d. What will probably happen to the cubs witohut any human interference?

2. Guide the activity "How Many Bears in the Forest?" or "How Many Coyotes in the Woodlands?" You can find guidelines for "Coyotes" at http://www.cyfernet.org/integrate/iowa/scarry.html.

3. Have the students choose a way in which human interaction has affected or is affecting another population. They can do this individually or as a group. Individually the student could do research of the effects and write a brief explanation of what they found to teach to the other students. As a group the students can come up with a way to display to the class the human effect.

4. Have the students learn about population growth using exponential growth and logistic growth models at the interactive lesson site: http://www.otherwise.com/population/.

5. Construct a food web for the grasslands of Africa, noting primary producers, primary consumers, etc.