Draw a graph which fits each of the scenarios below.
Scenario One: When the population was young, there was lots of food, room to grow, and no natural predators, so the population grew rapidly.
Scenario Two: After a few years of unchecked growth, the goats ate nearly all of the available food. Many goats died of famine. When the food grew back, their numbers increased, and they devoured the food again. The population oscillated up and down, above and below a certain average number.
Scenario Three: When the herd of goats was culled regularly, by sailors or later by dogs, the numbers of goats were kept low enough so they did not eat all of the food. The population grew to a certain maximum size and a population of healthy goats remained stable for a long time.
Can you think of some other ways that the populations could grow and decline?
Get together with a group in your class and brainstorm all of the additional population patterns you can think of and list the limiting factors which affected these populations in all your scenarios. Be ready to show your graphs to other groups in your class and to explain your rationale in each case.