Ecological Zoology is the study of strategies employed by species in the animal kingdom ranging from sponges to cheetahs to survive in their environment. These strategies involve complex interactions with both biotic and abiotic components of an ecosystem. This course uses animals to understand ecological interactions and the ecological interactions to understand animal biology. Students will learn basic zoological classification systems and how the ecology of an organism influences where an organism fits into this classification system. In addition, students will learn the basic tools used to sample and study animal populations with an emphasis on prairie and freshwater ecosystems. In the service learning portion of the lab, students will collect and analyze data for local environmental interests. Upon completion of this course students will be able to identify and classify major groups of animals, identify animal guilds and discuss how species function in an ecosystem, recognize how the environment influences animal evolution, understand ecosystem process at all ecological scales (individual, population, community, ecosystem). In addition students will be able to compile, analyze and interpret scientific lab experiments.