Year levels

Year 7 & Year 8


$19 per student


Monday to Friday (during the school term)


Adaptations, Classification, Endangered Species, Food Chains / Webs, Human Impact, Resource Management

They say you are what you eat. Can you tell by looking at these animals what (or who)’s for dinner?

Program Description

In the wild it’s a case of eat, or be eaten. Animals are specially adapted to chow down on their favourite food and avoid being eaten themselves. In Eat or be Eaten, you’ll learn to identify what (or who)’s for dinner in each animal’s life.

Animals are adapted to obtain and digest food and help them avoid being eaten themselves. By looking at the unique characteristics of African animals, students will understand food webs and learn how to classify animals based on their diet.

Students investigate living animals and analyse skulls to classify species based on their structural adaptions for obtaining and digesting food – and to avoid being eaten themselves. By analysing this food web, students will understand the impact if a species is lost. This understanding highlights the importance of ecosystems and the need for conservation programs.

A safari tour helps students to understand this ecosystem in a broader context and the remarkable interactions and interdependencies that occur in grasslands all over the world, from Africa to our own backyard.

Students will learn:

  • How organisms can be classified based on their adaptations to obtain and digest food.
  • The impacts on ecosystems when a species is introduced or removed and how we can reduce impact.
Activity Duration
Welcome and introduction to your day (arrivals between 9.50 - 10.05am) 10 minutes
Workshop with Werribee Open Range Zoo teacher
30 minutes
Safari bus tour 40 minutes
Self-guided walking trails and options to join educational keeper talks  1 – 4 hours

Learning outcomes

Victorian Curriculum F – 10

Science Understanding

There are differences within and between groups of organisms; classification helps organise this diversity (VCSSU091)

  • Students will discover through observation of species and skull analysis how organisms can be classified based on their adaptations to obtain and digest food

Interactions between organisms can be described in terms of food chains and food webs and can be affected by human activity (VCSSU093)

  • Students will create a food web representative of the African Savanna and determine the impacts on this ecosystem when other species are introduced to the mix

Science Inquiry Skills

Use scientific knowledge and findings from investigations to identify relationships, evaluate claims and draw conclusions (VCSIS111)

  • From investigations about animal adaptations, students will apply their skills to draw conclusions about animal diet and the interactions they have with their environment during a skull analysis activity
Geographical Concepts and Skills

Identify, analyse and explain spatial distributions and patterns and identify and explain their implications (VCGGC100)

  • Students will determine the impacts humans have on a food web in the African savanna and the role zoos Victoria is playing in trying to reduce this impact

Plan your excursion 

Eat or Be Eaten is an outdoor all-weather program; the students will need appropriate clothing for weather conditions. This could include a raincoat, hat and sun protection.

The organising teacher should make themselves known to Admission Staff prior to entering the Zoo so that payment can be made. More information 

Book your excursion

Call (03) 9340 2788

You will need the following to book your excursion:

  • Education program of your choice
  • Preferred excursion date
  • School name and address
  • Contact details of organising teacher
  • Number of students/classes and their year level