Food chains in nature

Food chains in nature

Todays learning: (WALT)


  • Construct and interpret a variety of food chains, identifying producers, predators and prey.
  • To identify the structure of a food chain in a specific habitat
  • That most food chains start with a green plant.

Lesson Activities / Tasks

  •  VIDEO: Food chains in nature.
  • Video Dialog
    • We can also draw food chains for wildlife habitats.
    • You could study a wildlife habitat in school - perhaps the hedgerow around your school grounds.
    • So what calls hedgerows home?
    • Well first we need to see what kind of hedgerow we have.
    • Some have ditches or dykes, sometimes with a row of trees sometimes without.
    • If they have ditches they may have water running in them, this can be deep and dangerous if there has been a lot of rain; so BE CAREFUL;  or it may just be a series of small pools with a trickle of water between.... or even completely dry.
    • Once you have decided what your hedgerow is like a good place to start with identifying the living things is with the plants.
    • This is because plants are the start of many different food chains.
    • Plants with flowers provide nectar for insects like bees and butterflies
    • Plants like nettles are important - white dead nettles provide nectar for insects like this bumble bee
    • Stinging nettles while not very nice for us are especially important for some butterflies - not for the adult but for the caterpillar stage.
    • Caterpillars of several butterflies eat the leaves of stinging nettles before they change into adults like these .... peacock, red admiral....
    • These caterpillars are in turn very important to many birds who feed their young on them
    • Like these blue tits, great tits sparrows?????.
    • The hedgerow not only provides food it may also provide a home for many small animals and birds.
    •  A good hedge should have several signature trees - these are tall trees in a hedgerow they are important as singing posts for birds, they also provide habitats and holes for creatures to live in or under.
    • If your hedgerow has a dyke with water in you could see what lives in the water - like pond dipping. But you must ask and get an adults help with this as some dykes can be very deep and dangerous if you fall in.
    • Why not investigate your local hedgerow you can get special identification guides to help you do this.
    • Once you have identified some plants and animals in and around your hedgerows you could start and connect them in a food chain to show what eats what.
    • For example Stinging Nettles --> caterpillars --> Blue Tit --> kestrel or sparrow hawk
    • Thistle --> aphids --> sparrow --> sparrow hawk
    • dandelion --> bumble bee
    • You could ask your teacher for a sheet to help you do this as a cut & paste or on the computer
    • Some of the creatures you have seen can be pests on farmers crops such as
    • aphids which can feed on farmers crops such as Oilseed Rape Wheat and Peas and can reduce the amount of food farmers produce from these crops.
    • So hedges are important to farmers as some of the creatures which live in hedges can help with the control of some of the pests which attack farmers crops

    • Complete relevant section of pupil work book

  • Do quiz for first section answers…


Outcomes: (WILF)

  • State that predators eat other animals
  • Identify animals which are predators and their prey eg birds feed on insects, foxes feed on rabbits, herons feed on fish
  • State that many animals which are prey live on green plants
  • Sequence valid food chains relating to the local habitats using the arrow convention correctly.

Teaching notes:


Last modified: Tuesday, 19 November 2013, 7:03 PM