Using Florida as an example, this lesson teaches about the gopher tortoise as a keystone species, the importance of the gopher's burrow to other organisms, and plant adaptations to fire.

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In this lesson, students explore controlled burn scenarios and the positive impacts of fire on ecosystems. Students assume the role of a fire manager to develop a recommendation for a specific ecosystem, and compare and contrast how organisms in different ecosystems have adapted to fire. For teaching biomimicry, there is a good section exploring animal and plant adaptations to fire, which students could use as a springboard for researching other species’ adaptations to fire and other natural disturbances.

The Nature Conservancy’s Nature Works Everywhere website is filled with dozens of additional resources including information about different ecosystems, connecting to nature, the relationship of native peoples’ to the land and nature, interviews with scientists, and project-based activities.

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