BIOL 427 (Fall)

Herpetology

(given in alternate years; Not offered in 2017-2018)
This course is video-conferenced to the Mac Campus



Instructor(s):
D. Green
Redpath Museum
(514) 398-4086 ext. 4088
david.m.green@mcgill.ca
Workload:
3 credits (2-3-4)
Prerequisite(s):
BIOL 205 or permission of instructor. BIOL 305 is strongly recommended.
Restriction:
Those who have taken BIOL 327 cannot take BIOL 427.
Content:
This course considers the evolution and diversity of amphibians and reptiles, emphasizing detailed discussions of aspects that illustrate general principles of organismal and evolutionary biology. As such, the course explores the volution and diversity of amphibians and reptiles (origins and phylogeny; diversity and systematics of extinct and modern forms), reproduction (development, metamorphosis, neoteny; phenotypic plasticity), communication and social behaviour  (Vocalizations, acoustic communication, sensory systems, reproductive behaviour, social behaviour and parental care). physiology (hibernation and cold tolerance; venoms and toxicology, defensive strategies), biomechanics (jaw mechanics; Locomotion, limblessness, arboreality, fossorial life, swimming), genetics (sex determination; Parthenogenesis and hybridization)  and ecology (predator/prey relations, population ecology, conservation and endangered species. The laboratories emphasize structure and identification of representative forms, especially local and North American species.
Readings:
Herpetology, 4th Ed., by Pough et al. 2016. Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern and Central North America, 4th Ed., by Powell et al. 2016 is recommended for the laboratory. Independent readings.
Method:
Two lectures, one laboratory per week. One field trip.
Evaluation:

One final examination on lecture material; one final laboratory examination.  Students will also be graded on an essay which will include its presentation as a brief seminar.

Last update: March 22, 2017

 

McGill University values academic integrity. Therefore all students must understand the meaning and consequences of cheating, plagiarism and other academic offences under the Code of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures (see http://www.mcgill.ca/integrity/ for more information).