World Wildlife Day is hugely important and highlights all the incredible things that animals, insects and plants do for us and our world. If you watched David Attenborough’s recent ‘Green Planet’ documentary (we wouldn’t miss it!), you’ll have seen all of the amazing things that go on ‘behind the scenes’ with the flora on our planet.
This year’s theme is ‘recovering key species for ecosystem restoration’ – a huge and ongoing task that will benefit us and future generations. The UN World Wildlife Day organisation state that ‘continued loss of species, habitats and ecosystems threatens all life on Earth, including us. People everywhere rely on wildlife and biodiversity-based resources to meet all our needs, from food, to fuel, medicines, housing, and clothing. Millions of people also rely on nature as the source of their livelihoods and economic opportunities.’ This World Wildlife Day will focus on driving towards supporting ‘the restoration of their [wildlife] habitats and ecosystems and to promote their sustainable use by humanity.’
We need to take time to learn about wildlife – simple steps to increase your understanding about why flora and fauna are so important to our wonderful world and the way we live in it. There are many different ways to do so - sites, videos, blogs and resources to help further our knowledge. Examples are the ifaw, CITES and Jackson Wild (all partners of UN World Wildlife Day).
Teaching children about the importance of wildlife conservation and biodiversity can seem daunting but there are some straightforward ways to get the ball rolling (that don’t involve going on safari!). Bird watching for instance birds are incredibly important in maintaining the world's ecosystems. Grab a pair of binoculars and a notepad and check out all the species you see! Whether in your garden or on a walk there’s always a chance to spot chirpy chums. Build a home for local wildlife in your garden or a nearby park – using twigs, leaves, pinecones and any other natural resources you can get your hands on!
And don’t forget about the bees! These fuzzy black and yellow friends continue to pollinate, helping flowers breed and grow, keeping the world's cycle of life turning over. You can plant wildflowers in a certain area of your garden (or leave a patch to grow instead of mowing) and try creating an easy bee conservation area! Books, documentaries, and creative activities can help to highlight the significance of wildlife, showing children where animals come from and how they help our planet – there’s so much to learn.
Teaching children about recycling and composting, reusing and sustainability is a great way to demonstrate how their actions can aid our planet Earth. Even something as simple as repurposing cardboard boxes and jars for crafting will show them how reusing household items can be fun and more sustainable than buying something new! If you’re looking for a way for them to help around the house, perhaps recycling and composting could be the thing – creating the habit and teaching them the importance of doing it. Another idea is to adopt an animal online - this can be an exciting way for you and your kids to learn about endangered species around the world while contributing to a charitable organisation that protects them.
These are just a few ideas from the eatsleepdoodle team to give us all some extra conservation inspiration, help our planet and continue to find ways to sustain life here on Earth. Protecting wildlife = protecting our planet – creating a better future for generations to come.
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