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Irp Research Paper

764 words - 4 pages

The purpose of this investigation is to test the effect of differing pH levels on the heart rate of bivalve mollusks.
Mollusca can be classified by their soft bodies, “head” and “foot” regions. They also generally have hard exoskeletons that cover their bodies. This is the case with snails and, of course, clams. Bivalve mollusks have a hard outer shell and soft insides. Their hearts are located towards the center of the umbo, which extends from the terminal end of the valve. The umbo is also the location at which their shell grows. The gills of a bivalve mollusk are lining the interior of part of their shell. Below the location of their heart is their foot, which is used to move or attach ...view middle of the document...

While mollusks might not sense a change in pH directly they would notice it through the effect it had on their system as it passed through the mollusks’ gills.
PH levels would affect marine life because they get their oxygen from the water around them. It would pass through their system and damage their insides or even kill some of the bacteria that are not as tolerant of differing pH levels. However that would only happen if the pH levels were too extreme. At more moderate pH levels the mollusks would most likely manage well as they are quite tolerant in that area. As the pH fluctuates their shells would most likely degrade and they would get un-well.
Heart rate, which is the variable this experiment will measure, is the measure of how fast an organism’s heart is beating. It accelerates when the organism is stressed or excited. It also declines as the organism’s heart slows, if the organism’s heart rate gets too slow it will perish or pass out. The heart circulates blood through the body of mollusks so that it can continue to function.
This experiment will consist of placing mollusks with heart rate sensors on them into containers with various levels of...

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