Patterns in Nature Activity

In the battle for survival, color and pattern can provide a distinct advantage for both predators and prey. Patterns are useful for attracting attention when looking for a mate and disguising identity to fool a predator. Cryptic coloration allows animals to blend with their surroundings, making them almost disappear from enemies or prey (examples: cheetah, deer, and rattlesnake). These natural colors and patterns become advantages in the battle for survival. Disruptive coloration is the sharp contrast of light and dark colors that makes it difficult for predators or prey to recognize the shape of an animal.

Use your skills of observation and detail to help the chameleon blend into new surroundings!

You will need:

Go on safari!

Print out the chameleon coloring sheet, and cut out the chameleon. Then go on a surrounding safari! What backgrounds might your chameleon blend into? Look both inside and outdoors. Then, color your chameleon to match those surroundings. Flip your chameleon over and help it blend into another habitat!

Look Closer

  • What type of coloration did you use to help your chameleon blend in? Cryptic? Disruptive? Both?
  • Some animals don’t just use colors to blend in, they also use textures! Feel the surroundings your chameleon is blending into. What materials could you use to make the chameleon feel the same as the background?
  • Of course the chameleon blending into surroundings like the books and pegboard is just in fun. Real chameleons use their color-changing skin differently. Watch the video below to see how chameleons' blending actually happens!


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