Science KS1/KS2: Why do animals and plants have camouflage?

In this short film for primary schools, Michaela Strachan looks at fish and mammals and explains how they have evolved to become better camouflaged to suit their environment.

Animals that are not well camouflaged are more likely to be eaten as prey.

Mutations are changes in genes that produce a beneficial or harmful trait.

After many generations the better camouflaged offspring will thrive and reproduce more.

Michaela models selection pressure by predators with a game involving sweets and salad.

This short film is from the BBC series, Evolutionwatch.

Teacher Notes

This short film could be shown before a school visit to an aquarium.

You could replicate the game with your class using sweets and salad, or with pieces of coloured wool on grass.

You could challenge your pupils to make camouflaged masks or camouflage themselves against different backgrounds.

Pupils could also design an animal that is camouflaged against a given habitat.

Curriculum Notes

This short film will be relevant for teaching primary science, particularly on the topics of animals and evolution.

More from Evolutionwatch:

How have animal skeletons adapted?
What is selective breeding?
Different types of leaves
How animals have adapted to become successful predators
Timeline of life on Earth