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Habitat Survey

If you slow down and look closely, you’ll find
creatures big and small…

Equipment:

  • notebook 
  • paddlepop sticks
  • magnifying glasses
  • pencil
  • paper or printed table to record
  • materials to make animal homes (dependent on what you choose)

Task 1: Who's home?


Local environment

1. Explore!
Venture outside of the classroom or home. Find a nice quiet spot to sit and listen.



2. Survey!
Watch the grass, shrubs and trees for any form of animal activity. Focus on the ground. Sift slowly and safely between the grass blades, lift up sticks, leaves and/ or rocks to see if there are any insects present. Make sure you return anything lifted up or disturbed to its original state. What animals did you find, and what were they doing?


3. Record!
Record your results in the table below. Where did you find the animal? Was this habitat natural or man-made? What was the animal, insect or reptile doing? How many times did you see this activity?
 

Location

 

Habitat

Natural/built?

What animal activity
did you see here?

Tally

       
       
       
       

Draw a field sketch of your surroundings showing the wildlife found here and how they interact with their environment OR one example of an animal using its habitat in detail.

blank rectangle to fill in answers

Cumberland Plain Woodland

4. Repeat!
Repeat your survey, this time in the Cumberland Plain Woodland using the Virtual Woodland Wander and click on the hotspots to find out about the plants and animals of the Cumberland Woodland.

Location

Cumberland Plain Woodland

Habitat

What animals live here?

Tally

     
     
     
     
     

Draw a field sketch of the woodland showing the wildlife found here and how they interact with their environment OR one example of an animal using its habitat in detail.

blank rectangle to fill in answers

Task 2: Similarities and differences

Venn diagrams are used to easily and clearly compare two or more things. The part where the circles overlap is where we list the similarities of the things we’re comparing, and in the parts of the circles that don’t overlap we can fill in things that are different. In the parts where the circles don’t overlap, list the habitats and wildlife activities that were unique to each environment. Where the circles overlap, list those that were the same in each environment.

two overlapping circles

Task 3: Build your own habitat

How can we attract more wildlife visitors? In this activity, you will construct a habitat to install on the school grounds or in your garden.

1. Discuss!
What are tree hollows and how do they form?
Who uses tree hollows as habitat?
Why is preserving 'old growth’ Cumberland Plain Woodland important?

2. Construct!
Build a wildlife nest box or other home. Watch the Powerful owl chick fledges and the Sleep ringtail possum videos for inspiration. Instructions can be found here to make an animal home.
 

possum in a box in a tree


3. Survey!
Once installed, visit your nest box installation and survey for usage. Record your observations in a table.

Date

 

Animal observed

Tally

   
   
drawing of a line of trees