Aquariums & Ponds
Water and water habitats are a great place to start and Aquariums are wonderful ways to explore aspects of aquatic life and systems.
Creating frog ponds and other water features in schools or investigating local waterways or waterbodies is super interesting for students.
Ponds are yet another important feature for encouraging a diversity of wildlife into school grounds. A myriad of insects, notably dragon and mayflies, lay their eggs in water bodies and so are encouraged into an are with the promise of breeding. Of course frogs too rely on water for reproduction and regular hydration. Other animals such as birds, lizards and fishing spiders will be attracted to ponds to feed on the varying life stages of frogs and dragonflies and of course to the water itself to drink. Mosquitoes will of course take advantage of ponds too, but the introduction of native fishes will keep their larvae under wraps. Certain species of native fish will only feed on the mozzie larvae and leave the frog eggs and tadpoles, such as blue-eyes. Other native aquatic invertebrates like shrimp can help to balance pond ecosystems. Avoiding introduced species of fish is best especially for ponds as our heavy monsoonal rains can cause the ponds to overflow which could create a flow to a drain releasing invasive fishes into our waterways.
Aquariums are fantastic for getting an up-close look at the goings-on of aquatic life. Bringing frogs eggs or aquatic insect larvae into classroom aquariums allows students to observe the development of these animals through their lives, and once they finish their aquatic lives they can be released back outside of the froglets can be kept as classroom pets.