Caterpillar crafted out of cardboard rolls

Image: Idang Rusden | ©

Introduction

Ideas to help you connect with and learn more about insects in your backyard.

Bug's world

Get thinking about how insects experience the world.

  1. Lie down and cover yourselves with leaves and sticks, leaving faces exposed.
  2. Try to stay still and quiet while imagining yourself as a bug.
    • What would you be doing today?
    • Which senses would you use to find your way around?
    • What would the world around you look like? Take photos from this perspective and/or draw what you see from ground level. You could keep photos and drawings in a nature journal.
    • Can you feel what the bugs in the ground are doing today?

Insect senses chart.
Insect senses – view larger (JPG, 522K)
Image: Lisa Paton ©

Insect craft

  1. Make model insects using materials from around your house.
  2. Use your model to imagine and act out how an insect might experience the world.

You can find lots of ideas by searching online for recycled insect crafts.

Which insects have been here?

  1. Find items that show signs of insect life. These may include leaves that have been eaten by insects, sticks with bugs living in them, old nests, webs, snail shells, exoskeletons, butterfly wings and other objects.
  2. Can you use the items you have found to identify what types of insects may be in your backyard?

Inside a compost bin/worm farm 

Illustration of bugs in a compost bin.
Inside a compost bin
Image: Lisa Paton ©

  1. View ‘Yucky bugs’ on YouTube. In this video, Ruud Kleinpaste (The Bug-man), investigates what is in a compost bin and finds the ‘recycling squad’ inside.
  2. After viewing, head outside and dig up your own compost bins, gardens, or worm farms to investigate the invertebrates that make up your recycling squads. These amazing animals recycle the remains of living things into compost and soil.
  3. Can you find worms, slugs, springtails, ants, cockroaches and beetles like Ruud did?
Did you know?

Insects see the world differently to people.

Arthropods have compound eyes, which means they have many lenses in their eyes that allow them to see images repeated in their vision. This type of seeing is good for sensing movement.

Some insects also see different colours than we do. 

More learning

If you are interested in learning more about insects, check out Experiencing invertebrates in your green space.

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