Direct Variation Word Problem

• Mar 10th 2009, 08:39 PM
EyesThatSparkle02
Direct Variation Word Problem
To estimate the number of flamingos in the Lake Manyara flock, the Kenyan Wildlife Service banded 600 birds. At a later time, they caught 1000 birds and found that 48 were banded. About how large is the entire flock?

I have no clue how to approach this problem. How do I identify x and y?? What's the setup of the equation?? Please Help!! Thanks!
• Mar 10th 2009, 09:21 PM
mr fantastic
Quote:

Originally Posted by EyesThatSparkle02
To estimate the number of flamingos in the Lake Manyara flock, the Kenyan Wildlife Service banded 600 birds. At a later time, they caught 1000 birds and found that 48 were banded. About how large is the entire flock?

I have no clue how to approach this problem. How do I identify x and y?? What's the setup of the equation?? Please Help!! Thanks!

Let N be the size of the entire flock. Solve for N:

$\displaystyle \frac{600}{N} = \frac{48}{1000}$.

If you'd posted in the Probability and Statistics subforum with a title like "Find the Best Estimate" I'd probably give a justification as to why (after making some assumptions) equating the ratios leads to the best estimate.