Research at Home: Organisms and Ecosystems
Think Outside! (No box needed.)
Why stay indoors when there is a world of science to explore just beyond your front door? Set up a biocube to analyze an ecosystem in depth, get up close and personal with your favorite insect, observe animals from afar, or make your project literally home-grown with plant science.
There are many great resources to learn from. Here are a few our team recommends:
National Museum of Natural History
A Biocube allows you to focus on biodiversity by closely examing and observing life in one cubic foot of space. Check out these resources to learn how to create a Biocube, select a spot, and get started analyzing the contents
Connect with Nature: Explore and share your observations from the natural world. With over 42 million observations posted, you’re bound to find project ideas for observing organisms in nature.
A picture (or live feed) is worth a thousand words! Check out explore’s live animal cams with feeds from around the world to get ideas for an observational study!
Learn more about Ecosystems using LabXChange
ISEF Abstracts on Organisms and Ecosystems
Check out these projects in Animal Sciences, Plant Sciences and Earth and Environmental Sciences, three of the twenty-one Regeneron ISEF categories. See more ISEF abstracts by visiting the ISEF Project database.
Earth and Environmental Sciences
- The Effect of Salt Spray, Ungulate Fencing, and Soil Type on Coastal Plant Distribution and Abundance on the Kalaupapa Peninsula, Molokai
- Mapping Arsenic Movement due to Tsunami Events: Developing a Comprehensive Hot Spot Map of Arsenic Contamination in Wailoa State Park in Hilo, Hawaii
- Water Recycling: The Effect of Soap Nut Grey Water on the Environment (Soil Microbiome, Year 4)
- Rain vs. Bore – Do the Best Results Come Out of the Blue or the Red?
Society Blog Posts about Organisms and Ecosystems
Articles about Organisms and Ecosystems
Science News and Science News for Students are our award-winning publications that cover current advances across all STEM disciplines. We have gathered a collection of articles specifically on Organisms and Ecosystems to further shed light on this topic and provide inspiration for student research projects.
Women in ecology, from forests to the sea
These women in science are all about ecosystems and environments
Pollen-deprived bumblebees may speed up plant blooming by biting leaves
In a pollen shortage, bees can make tomatoes bloom early by nipping foliage
Cool Job: Rethinking how plants hunt for water
Researcher probes the very beginnings of root growth
Earthworms: Can these gardeners’ friends actually become foes?
Invading jumping worms can remove leaf litter, making it hard for forest plants to grow
Burrowing birds create pockets of rich plant life in a desert landscape
Mounds of sand dug out by nest-digging birds are microhabitats where seeds can germinate
America’s duck lands: These ‘potholes’ are under threat
Scientists study important U.S. grasslands to learn what it will take to save their vital ecosystems
Plant-based fire retardants may offer a less toxic way to tame flames
Scientists have converted acids found in tea leaves and buckwheat into fire-resistant chemicals
Young sunflowers keep time
The flowers track the sun using an internal clock
Warm petals may attract chilly bees
Violets with dark petals may give bees a warm spot to rest their bums
Newfound desert soil community lives on sips of fog
Lichens and other fungi and algae team up to form a ‘grit-crust’ on ultra-dry soil
Need a little luck? Here’s how to grow your own
Teen researcher from Japan uses plant hormone to boost leaf counts in clover
Earthworms lose weight in soils polluted with microplastics
Plants were stunted, too, as scrawnier worms may offer fewer benefits to them and their soil
Taking a long look at lichen
ISEF finalist Madeline Handley examined lichens near streams in her native Alaska
Let’s learn about the creepy crawlies in your home
Ants, spiders and more may be hiding out