Habitat Web

Habitat Web

This activity gets students to think about the larger scale impacts of human activities.


How do changes travel through a connected ecosystem?

Here is a list of 3 habitats, 15 animals and plants and 6 threats to biodiversity. Work together as a class to learn more about habitats, species and threats.


Animals and plants


Steppe Grassland

Saiga Antelope




Wetlands, eg lakes

Sociable lapwing

Eagle owl


Building fences

Semi desert


Steppe herb 1

Steppe herb 2

Steppe grass 1




Steppe grass 2





Grassland insect1

Grassland insect 2


Climate change





Industrial development















Teachers Note

You can add and remove habitats, animals, plants and threats to make this activity more locally appropriate for the group you are working with.


1. Using paper or card, make one label for each of your chosen habitats, creatures and threats.

  • Attach one label to each student in the class. Each student becomes a' habitat', a 'creature' or a 'threat'.
  • Using string or thread, link each 'habitat' together (because each habitat interacts with the other habitats). Then link each 'creature' with the' habitat' or habitats it needs to live.
  • Next make links between 'creatures' that you think interact in some way (e.g. uses the other creature as food, or as shelter). Now you have a nice biodiversity web!

2. Next, get one 'threat' to gently shake one of the 'creatures' that might be affected by this threat (e.g. 'saiga' by 'hunting').

  • How many other 'creatures' also feel the shaking through the string? Who are they?

3. Now shake a bit harder.

  • Does it make any difference to the number of 'creatures' affected?
  • Is the habitat affected?

4. Try each of the other 'threats' in the same way and see what effects there are.

5. Then get all the 'threats' to shake at the same time. What happens?

Discussion and Follow-Up

Discuss the effects and consequences with the class.

Additional Activity

Draw a "food web" that shows all the connections you discovered between species and habitats. Habitats and plants at the bottom of the page, plant-eating animals as the next highest and then meat-eating animals at the top.

  • Have you added humans to your food web?