Water Observation/ Experiment

Part I:

Click on the following link to view pictures of the ten largest freshwater fish:  Largest Fresh Water Fish   (http://largestfreshwaterfish.com/) One of the largest freshwater fish is the beluga sturgeon, up to 30 feet long and weighing 6000 lbs.

Click on the following link to view pictures of the largest saltwater fish: Largest Salt Water Fish  (http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/shark-week/photos/whale-sharks/) The largest saltwater fish is the whale shark, 40 feet long and weighing 65,000 lbs.

**How do the properties of freshwater versus saltwater contribute to the size differences that you observed?


Part II:

Please read all the way through this activity first before starting.

Fill two clear glasses with (8 oz.) of water (one measured cup is sufficient).

  • Allow one glass to spend about an hour at room temperature, sitting out on the counter. This is your Room Temperature Water
  • Allow the second glass to sit in the refrigerator for an hour. This is your Cold Water
  • After the hour has passed, heat some water (either from the tap or by using the stove or the microwave), and fill a third clear glass with hot water in the same amount as used in the other two glasses. This is your Hot Water
  • Set all three glasses in front of you—make sure that you know which glass contains which temperature of water.
  • Before proceeding any further, be sure that the water in all three glasses is still (no movement). You will be taking some food coloring (red or blue works best) and dropping 2 drops of food coloring in each glass. If you do not have access to food coloring, any liquid dye (ink, for example) will work. Before adding the food coloring or dye, answer the following question:

** Explain: What is your prediction? as to which glass of water will have the food coloring distributed evenly throughout the glass after 15 minutes.

Add the food coloring—be careful not to touch the glasses or jostle them in any manner—and observe what happens for the next fifteen minutes. You can hold a white sheet of paper behind each glass to get a better view of the dye in the water. Record your observations for use in answering the following questions.

**What happened when the dye was placed in each glass?  Was your prediction correct? If not, explain why your prediction was not correct. What property of water did this experiment show? Why? Provide an example found in biological systems that shows why the properties of water that you observed in this experiment are beneficial to biological systems.

**Based on what you observed, what would be the effects on a lake or river biological system if it were to increase its temperature?


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