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    Explore the animal kingdom, mammalians and family Mustelidae

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    Please use this link for this assignment.

    Once you find the "Chordata" link within the correct Kingdom page, notice the subphyla listed beneath it. Take note of which subphyla the sea squirt belongs to (you will see it in parentheses next to the correct name). Next click on the "Chordata" link and select "Systematics."

    List the Kingdom and Phylum, for the sea squirt and then briefly describe the characteristics that determine the organism's classification at each taxonomic level.
    Why is the sea squirt classified in the same phylum as a sea otter?
    Click on the "Life History & Ecology" tab to read more about Urochordates. What is another name that is used to describe them? Briefly describe the adult versus larval phase of its life cycle.
    Part II: Sea Otter

    List the Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and Species. Summarize the descriptions that are provided in each web page for the taxonomic group and use the website address and the TITLE of the page to cite your source. For example, if you summarize the Mammalia page, use this citation after your summary of the content (Hall of Mammals, http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/help/taxaform.html).

    Use a similar format to describe the taxonomic groups that this individual belong to as was used on the Home page for this Module. Be sure to take notes on each step of your classification as you complete the following instructions:

    Return to the Tree of Life page using the link at the bottom of the page. Select the correct Kingdom for Phylum Chordata. From this page, now think about what subphyla within Chordata would an otter belong to (HINT: Does it have a vertebral column? Is it more like a koala bear or a primitive fish?).
    Select the correct subphylum from this list.
    Now select the correct Class. On the page you will notice links that lead to fish, amphibia, reptiles, and mammals. Think about which best represents the sea otter (HINT: Does it have hair, scales, or a slimy skin? Is it warm-blooded "homeothermic" or cold-blooded "poikilothermic?"). If you can't decide, try each link until you find characteristics that match those of the sea otter.
    Once you have selected the correct Class, a list of Orders will open next to it. Consider the sea otter's diet. Does it eat vegetables such as sea weed, or meat such as oysters, mussels, and clams? Is it more like whale, horse, elephant, bat, or cat? If you can't decide try some of the links until you narrow it down.
    Select the corresponding Order and make note of it. Determine which Family, Genus and species describe the otter select "Systematics" at the bottom of the page.
    When you enter the "Systematics" page for the sea otter, select the link for "International Sea Otter Survival Fund" to learn more about the family and genus characteristics and classification. Use the links "About Otters" and then "Otter Species" from this page to answer the following questions:
    To what family do otter-like animals belong?

    Using the Species List, what is the difference between the Sea Otter and the Marine otter? List the genus and species for each.

    What threats do the Sea Otter and Marine otter face as species?

    Part III: Explore the UCMP Site

    Follow two additional links within the UCMP website. This is your choice and your opportunity to explore this very cool resource provided by UC Berkeley. The links within UCMP do not have to be related to either sea squirts or otters, but you must include the web address (and it must be within the ucmp.berkeley.edu domain!) and a brief description of what you learned on that page.

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    Solution Preview

    This is a very interesting assignment, and the instructions are very specific. I'll help guide you through some of it, but I think it is best that you spend time to explore these resources. I'll show you some examples, and you will use the website to complete your responses.

    I'll help you with Part I to see how you can address the following questions on your own: sea squirt is in subphylum urochordata. It is in kingdom metazoa since it is multicellular, motile at some point in life, heterotrophic (cannot fix carbon, relies on organic carbon for growth). It is in phylum chordata since it has characteristics of chordates (a notochord, a dorsal nerve cord, ...

    Solution Summary

    We explored the University of California Museum of Paleontology website and learned more about animals, chordates, mammals and otters.