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close this book Teaching conservation in developing nations
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Appendix F: Live animals

A conservation center can be the home of a number of small, local animals. It is a rewarding experience for visitors to realize that the fish, spider or frog that they see everyday, leads an interesting and busy life in which food, air, sun and water are as important as in the visitors' own lives.

In a school setting, over a period of time, children can learn about life cycles by watching the development of a butterfly from its beginning as a tiny egg.

Collecting specimens for observation can be a good lesson in understanding habitats. The animal life of the seashore, for example, is rich and interesting in its adaptation to changing water levels.

Wild mammals and birds require more care and food than reptiles or insects, are subject to disease, and do not adapt well to captivity. If you feel it is important to keep a mammal, try one like a mouse or other small local mammal.