Dichotomous keys
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Dichotomous Keys. Home practice. Dichotomous Keys. Now that we know how organisms are classified. We know some of the characteristics that make up each Kingdom of the Classification System. Let’s Put It to work! And try to find the names of organisms by their characteristics!!!.

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Dichotomous Keys

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Dichotomous keys

Dichotomous Keys

Home practice


Dichotomous keys1

Dichotomous Keys

  • Now that we know how organisms are classified.

  • We know some of the characteristics that make up each Kingdom of the Classification System.

  • Let’s Put It to work! And try to find the names of organisms by their characteristics!!!


Dichotomous keys

  • There are many ways to find the names of organisms by looking at their characteristics.

  • One way to do that is using a

    • DICHOTOMOUS KEY

      A system of reading the characteristics in an either/or style.


Dichotomous keys

Example of a diagnostic dichotomous key for some eastern United Statesoaks based on leaf characteristics

US Oak Leaf Key

A E

B F

C G

D H

1. Leaves usually without teeth or lobes: 2

1. Leaves usually with teeth or lobes: 5

2. Leaves evergreen: 3

2. Leaves not evergreen: 4

3. Mature plant a large tree — Southern live oakQuercusvirginiana

3. Mature plant a small shrub — Dwarf live oakQuercus minima

4. Leaf narrow, about 4-6 times as long as broad — Willow oakQuercusphellos

4. Leaf broad, about 2-3 times as long as broad — Shingle oakQuercusimbricaria

5. Lobes or teeth bristle-tipped: 6

5. Lobes or teeth rounded or blunt-pointed, no bristles: 7

6. Leaves mostly with 3 lobes — Blackjack oakQuercusmarilandica 6. Leaves mostly with 7-9 lobes — Northern red oakQuercusrubra

7. Leaves with 5-9 deep lobes — White oakQuercus alba

7. Leaves with 21-27 shallow lobes — Swamp chestnut oakQuercusprinus

http://www.cas.vanderbilt.edu/


Making your own key

Making your own Key

  • Look for characteristics that separate the “Wacky People” into groups, ie: how many feet or eyes they have. Do they have hair? What is their body shape (round? Square?)

  • Once they are grouped, separate each groupinto smaller groups based on characteristics in that group.

  • Go through all characteristics till you have only one “wacky person” with that characteristic.

  • NAME EACH “Wacky Person”!!!

    • Give them a Genus and species name.

    • ex: Sparticus flier

    • make the name funny and appropriate for class.


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