What Happened to the Deer?

In this activity, students will learn carrying capacity and population limiting factors while studying real world case studies.

By completing this lesson, your students will be able to:

  • Define carrying capacity.
  • Identify the limiting factors to population growth.
  • Analyze the relationship between predator and prey population sizes.

More About this Lesson Plan

Wild Kids is a collection of simple activities that can be used to introduce students to different wildlife and life science concepts. Each activity includes a two page printable student worksheet and a page of teacher instructions. They have been aligned to the Arizona academic science standards and can be used to promote three dimensional teaching.

In this activity, students will read about a famous population case study that is based in Arizona. Then, they will relate that study to other examples to get a more complete picture of carrying capacity and limiting factors.


  • Eric Proctor, Wildlife Education Coordinator,
    Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD)
  • Other AZGFD staff

Standards Correlation

This lesson has been correlated to the following Arizona Department of Education academic standards:

  • High School

    1. HS+B.L2U1.1
    2. HS+B.L4U1.2

Education through AZGFD

See resources for teachers, including lesson plans. Learn about hunter education, and classes to earn bonus points.

teacher resources

The goal of the AZGFD education program is to promote awareness, appreciation and stewardship of the state’s wildlife resources by using wildlife as a context for learning.

see resources

hunter education for bonus points

Classroom and online instruction, and field days for hunter education. Online “Ethically Hunting Arizona” class allows hunters to earn a lifetime bonus point.

register for a class

Subscribe to our Newsletter