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My pilot study and extended investigation is to be conducted at Hunt's Bay, Gower.

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INTRODUCTION My pilot study and extended investigation is to be conducted at Hunt's Bay, Gower. Hunt's Bay or Deep Slade is situated on the Gower Peninsula facing south. The OS (ordinance survey) grid reference of hunt's bay, from a mumbles and south Gower map is 564 868 (see appendix 1). It is a rocky beach. The rocks are made up of carboniferous limestone, a sedimentary rock. We decided that the bedding planes at Hunt's Bay are about 45 degrees from each other, with smooth fronts due to erosion by the sea. This will affect the type and amount of sea life at the beach. Cliff face Sea 45 degrees Aim of Pilot study The aim of my pilot study is to conduct a transect of Hunt's Bay. From this, I will be able to produce a zonation pattern for the beach, draw a profile of the beach, calculate the exposure rating and discuss the distribution of various organisms found on the beach. This will help me with my extended investigation. Method for conducting a transect at Hunt's Bay The method I am going to use to conduct a transect at Hunt's Bay is the Cross-Staff method. (Refer to appendix 2) Tides A tide is a periodic rise and fall of all ocean waters, including those of open sea, gulfs and bays. The tide will rise and fall twice approximately every 25 hours, giving two high tides and two low tides daily. Tides are the result from the gravitational attraction of the moon and the sun upon the water and upon the earth itself. During the periods of new and full moon, when the sun, moon, and earth are directly in line, the moon and sun pull in the same direction. This results in the condition known as spring tides, in which the high tide is higher and the low tide is lower than usual. ...read more.


AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN RADULA LENGTH, SHELL THICKNESS AND VERTICAL ZONATION OF A COMMON LIMPET, PATELLA VULGATA ON AN EXPOSED ROCKY SHORE. Aim I aim to investigate the relationship between radula length, worn part of the radula length, the thickness of the shell and the vertical zonation (position) of Patella vulgata (the common limpet) on an exposed rocky beach, Hunt's Bay. Hypothesis I believe that the thickness of the limpet shell will increase as you move up the beach, from MLWS to MHWS, because at the top of the beach the limpets are more susceptible to the effects of emersion. These include desiccation, heat and strong u.v. light. I believe that the top of the beach is affected more by these emersion factors, as it is emersed for a higher percentage of the time compared to the bottom of the beach. Therefore, the thicker shells will act as a protective layer to protect the limpet from desiccation, overheating and u.v. light. I believe that limpets with thicker shells survive at the top of the beach because they are protected from the effects of emersion. However, I believe that limpets with thinner shells do not survive at the top of the beach but are eliminated, because they are not protected as much from the effects of emersion. Therefore, I believe that the thickness of the limpet's shell is environmentally induced variation. The null hypothesis states that any variation in shell thickness along the vertical height of the beach is biological variation and is not significant. I believe that the radula length of the limpet should vary against the position on the beach. The radula length of the limpet could decrease as you move up the beach because at the top of the beach the rocks are rougher and jagged due to the covering by barnacles and the decrease in tidal activity. I believe that this roughness has an effect on radula length because the radula will wear away more quickly as the limpet feeds from the rocks. ...read more.


This could therefore have led to inaccuracies in our results because it may not have been the true measurement of shell thickness. Modifications To increase the accuracy of our results there are certain modifications that could be carried out in this investigation. 1. I would need to repeat our results using a larger number of limpets at each station. Instead of collecting 10 limpets at each station, I would collect 30. We would have more results, increasing the accuracy of our results when taking averages and ratios. 2. I would increase the number of stations along the beach, from which I would collect the limpets. We would therefore have more samples, which would lead to more accurate results when working out averages and ratios. Increasing the number of samples would also decrease the likelihood of random variation obscuring a genuine association with a small number of samples. 7 stations are the minimum numbers of samples suggested to use when working with the Spearman rank correlation coefficient. I would therefore use more than 7 stations but less than 30 stations since with a large sample numbers the procedure of working out the ranks becomes very tedious. I would use 14 stations instead of 7. 3. The worn part of the radula was white and the non-worn part was brown. However, there was a gradual change from white to brown and there was no definite cut off point between the worn part and the non-worn part. To make our measurement the worn part of the radula as accurate as possible, we ensured that took the measurement at the same point throughout the experiment. This point was the last tooth on the worn part of the radula where it was clearly white and had not begun to change brown. This increased the accuracy of our results. 4. It was difficult to measure shell thickness due to the ridges that the limpet shells possess. To make this measurement as accurate as possible we ensured that we took the measurement at the same point throughout the experiment. This point was the apex. ...read more.

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