The best way to keep your kids engrossed and entertained is by helping them to build a large ant farm. In addition, the farm can work as an educational tool to teach the kids the importance of ecosystem and being responsible for taking care of animals and insects that that rely on them for food and other needs.
You do not have to spend a lot of money making an ant farm, and it is the perfect pet or hobby for kids who live in limited space. Ant farms are also ideal for kids who are allergic to cats and dogs. (See Reference 1)
Gent a glass tank and place a smaller tank inside it. The smaller tank will be the one in which the ants will build their tunnel. The glass walls of the smaller tank will allow the kids to view the way ants make their tunnels. (See Reference 1)
Now scout around the garden to look for ants. With the help of a shovel dig out the dirt along with ants and back the smaller tank with this. The dirt should be two to three inches lower than the top edges of the tank. Ensure that the dirt is packed firmly inside the tank. There are some ants that bite, and it is advisable to keep kids away from the ants which you are digging them out and transplanting them into their new home. (See Reference 1)
Make sure that you collect as many ants as possible. It is also recommended that you collect a queen ant if you can spot one and ants that appear to be larger in size than the rest of the ants. In case you do not find ants in your garden, visit a hobby store and purchase the ants from there. Alternatively, you can order ants online and get the web store to send them to you. (See Reference 1)
Encourage your kids to feed the ants. This can be done by dropping bread crumbs into the smaller tank. You can also dip some bread into honey or sugar water and place it in the tank. Tiny pieces of fruits and vegetables can also be kept in the tank. In order to provide water to the ants, soak some cotton balls with water and place them in tank. Make sure that you change the cotton balls every few days or when the cotton appears to be dry.
Generally, ants will not climb out of the tank. However, you can place a lid on the smaller tank, but ensure that the lid has holes in it to facilitate air circulation. The tank should not be disturbed as it will cause the tunnels that the ants have burrowed to cave in. (See Reference 1) So, ensure that you place the ant farm in a place that is safe and will not be in the way.
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