African Savanna Animal Adaptations: Camouflage (page 2)

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Author: Tricia Edgar
Topics: First Grade, Ecology


Your friend will see the colored pieces of paper before he sees the newspaper.


Think about the newspaper squares as the camouflaged animal, and the full sheet of newspaper as the surroundings. The newspaper squares were difficult to spot because they blend in to the background, and the colored construction paper squares are what your eyes are drawn too. The same goes for animals in the savanna; the animals that are camouflaged do not draw attention to themselves and can escape notice by predators (or prey).

You can also relate the newspaper to a zebra herd, and the newspaper squares to individual zebras—they’re tough to pick out. Imagine that the herd is running as a group to escape a predator. It’s enough to make you dizzy!

Some animals take camouflage beyond patterns. They actually look like something in their environment. Stick and leaf insects are great examples of this kind of mimicry. They look like real sticks and leaves so they can easily hide in the forest. However, some animals, like poison dart frogs, have adapted to be brightly-colored and stand out in their surroundings. These bright colors scare off predators because they indicate that the animal is poisonous (sometimes brightly-colored animals aren’t poisonous, but use this as a bluff).

Can you think of any ways to make this experiment harder? You can even try making some camouflage to wear yourself and see if your friend can find you!

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