Biology Students Try to Avoid a Busted Bracket

Can the #2 Forest Elephant outlast the #15 Honey Bee? Who will survive and advance in the #8 vs #9 matchup between the Himalayan Monal and the Nicobar Pigeon? Mr. Tim McEachern's ('99) Biology classes are joining students from around the world in the 2024 March Mammal Madness Tournament (MMM). Since 2013, MMM asks the question “Who Would Win?” when two animals encounter each other in an absurdly complex and wonderfully nerdy way . . . a simulated tournament within a structured game universe! Fill out your own bracket here to play along.
A team of scientists, teachers, and volunteers research the selected combatants and estimate the probability that Species A wins vs. Species B within the specific habitat of the encounter based on weaponry, armor, body mass, speed, fight style, physiology, attitude, and motivation. A random number draw is used to determine the winner, giving the #16 seed an ever-so-small-chance to win vs the #1 seed, making it possible for the tiny corn borer moth to defeat the giant elephant seal.

Over the next four weeks mammals and a few non-mammals (insects, birds, fish, and even some plants) will battle it out to see who will emerge as the tournament champion. Besides having students research the characteristics and habitats of animals, teachers can make connections to all parts of the curriculum including Language Arts, Social Studies, and Visual Arts. Recaps of all the battles can be found on the Rodent Roundtable YouTube page.
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