Hands-On Habitat Observation

Travel



A habitat is a place shared by certain species of plants and animals. I’ll use any excuse to find a way to study the balance of plants and animals in different natural settings. Take a walk along a woods road after a storm or study your lawn at first light. Some of the best opportunities to observe nature are right under your nose.

You can keep a written journal, take photos or use your webcam to record changes, or simply create a project like this one to enhance your knowledge and observation skills.

Materials:

  • Poster board at least 18×24 inches
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Photos or pictures of plants and animals for each habitat
  • Glue

Types of Habitats:

  • Grasslands
  • Wetlands
  • Forests
  • Deserts
  • Tundra

Procedure:

1. Draw a large pyramid on your poster board

2. Choose one of the habitats listed above

3. Cut out or draw pictures of the plants and animals for that habitat

4. Put all the plants at the BASE of the pyramid

5. Put the animals that eat those plants on the NEXT LEVEL of the pyramid

6. Put the animals that eat those plant-eating animals on the NEXT LEVEL of the pyramid

7. Put the animals that eat those animals at the TOP of the pyramid

8. Repeat this activity for a different habitat

The role of the plants:

  • They produce their own food (look up “photosynthesis”)
  • They provide ground cover and shelter, as well as food
  • They “breathe in” carbon dioxide and “breathe out” oxygen

Challenge:

  • Where can you find a healthy example of each kind of habitat?
  • Where can you find a changing habitat? What is causing the change?
  • What happened to the plants and animals in the changing habitat? Did new species replace old ones?




by [vikkyopea]

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