Wildlife Encounters - 5th - 8th grade
Lesson 2: Wildlife Populations
  • Key Words

Wildlife Populations

Populations are a group or collection of one or more species of organism. A population generally defines the group of individuals of one species living in a certain area. For example, when we talk about the population of the United States, we are referring to all of the people that live there.

Look at the map below to see the how the human population of the United States is expected to grow by the year 2030. What percentage of growth is expected to occur where you live?

population growth map

Similarly, a population of squirrels in a park describes the total number of squirrels that live there. Populations of multiple species living in one habitat form a community.

The squirrels in the picture below belong to 2 different populations that form one community. The squirrel with the red tail is a fox squirrel. The other two squirrels are both grey squirrels but the black squirrel has a darker color morph. Morphs are members of the same species that look different. What percentage of squirrels in this image are grey squirrels?