Daily activity 91: Insects and the buzzing, humming minibeast world!

July 27, 2020

This week’s theme:

HYDE PARK SOURCE TAKEOVER – Nature Nearest You.

This week’s colouring in sheet:

Download and print this week’s colouring sheet here. https://purplepatcharts.org/colouring-pages/

Fact of the day:

All of our gardens put together make up more of Britain’s green space than all of the nature reserves combined!

Resources list:

Old bedsheet, washing line, a torch, clothes pegs, outside wall space, hooks; Hollow dry sticks of all different sizes, some normal sticks, pair of old socks, scissors, string or wool to hang your bug hotel up.

 

Our Daily Activities this week have been created by our friends at Hyde Park Source. Watch the video below to meet Claire who will be sharing activities with us all week!

Activity 1:

Read, or ask somebody to read you the information from this Fact Sheet all about the bugs and insects around us.

Activity 2:

Make a glowing moth trap to attract and identify moths!

You can easily sit outdoors in the day and enjoy the butterflies and bees but there is one other type of insect that mainly comes out when you go to sleep – Moths!

We love moths with their shapes, colours, fancy names and amazing life-cycles, all the tiny yet completely beautiful details you notice when you take a closer look at them. Some are spotty, stripy, speckly – some shimmer with colour, others are patterned or camouflaged so they can hide safely amongst the plants.

Only thing with moths is that many hide away during the day. But there is an easy way to find out what kind of moths come out when the sun goes down: make a moth trap!

Instructions:

No moths get hurt in this activity – it simply means attracting moths to a light source so you can take a closer look at them. I guarantee you will be fascinated by the beautiful moths living right outside your house!

To create a simple moth trap in a matter of minutes, all you need is a white sheet and a bright lamp or torch. When it’s dark after 9pm go outside, choose a still warmish evening if possible.

Peg the sheet up onto your washing line or just hang it over some bushes, turn off nearby lights, then switch on your torch and point it at the sheet.

Wait for lots of fascinating moths to come to the sheet! They won’t be able to resist it! See if you can work out what types you see by looking at the above moth chart?

Activity 3:

Make your own Bug Hotel from sticks that you can hang to attract lots of insects and creepie crawlies to hide inside, shelter and make a cosy home.

Instructions:

Gather some normal sticks and also some hollow sticks from outside.

July, August and September is a good time to do this as many plants and flower stems have dried out in sun and so you will find more old dry sticks on the ground or be able to snap some off if they look brown and dead. Look in the messier wilder parts of the park or garden.

Cut or carefully snap your sticks into sections about 20cm long or the width of your hand spread out wide.

When you have a good few pieces ready, hold them all together in your hand to see if they make a nice fat bundle.

Get an old pair of socks that you don’t mind cutting up!

With some good scissors carefully cut the top off the neck of the sock to form a stretchy ring of material, then cut off another ring of material by cutting lower down. Keep working down the sock, cutting rings of material off until you have about 8 stretchy rings of sock material.

Get your sticks, lay them all the same way and bundle them up tight in one hand, then use the sock rings like elastic bands to tie and fix them all together. Be patient as this can take a few minutes to get the sticks nice and tight so they don’t fall out of the sock bands. Tie different stretchy sock rings spread out all along the length of your sticks to hold them together – 4 or 5 bands might be about right.

When secure, add a piece of wool or string to your bug hotel to make a loop so you can hang it up. Go outside and choose where to hang, wedge or place your bug hotel.

A good idea is to hang it or wedge it in a tree, or a hole in wall, or at the back of a garage or shed in a quiet spot.

Check it each day over the next month or so to see if any insects like bees, centipedes, spiders or wood lice have crawled inside to make a home!

Activity 4:

Watch this short video clip we filmed in the garden last week of a red-tailed bumble bee gathering pollen and nectar from a fuchsia flower…


What do you notice about the bee, can you spot how it carries the pollen and nectar it has collected?

 

 

Why not take a photo of you completing today’s daily activities and share it with us? You can share it on our FacebookInstagram or Twitter or send it to melanie@purplepatcharts.org and we’ll put it online for you!

 

 

All photos were taken by Claire at Hyde Park Source – thanks Claire!