About the experiment

So how does colour affect a creature's chance of survival? This experiment kit, for 11 to 14 year olds, will help you find out.

Before getting going, why not take a look at the online resources:

  • a short video full of tips for running your experiment
  • the I'm a Worm game - can you spot all the worms?
  • downloadable resources, including the kit notes for teachers, students and technicians
Blackbird eating worms

The Competition

Galapagos Islands competition winners announced.
Find out more ยป

Order Free!

Order Your Free Kit

To receive your Survival Rivals kits now...

Order Your Free Kit

About This Experiment

More information

Survival Rivals news

Read about recent news and events from the Survival Rivals team.

Find out more »

Useful links

Find out about other resources for teachers and students.

Find out more »

I'm a Worm, Get Me Out of Here uses different-coloured baits (worms) that are selected and eaten by birds. Students start by presenting birds with equal numbers of two different-coloured worms made from spaghetti and various food colourings. Each day, or at regular intervals, they breed the surviving worms – using a simple formula to calculate how many worms of each colour will be in the next generation. Over time the proportion of the type of worms that the birds leave uneaten increases, and this simulates directional selection.

Students can also test which factors influence the rate at which the two types of prey are selected by the birds. What happens when you change the colour of background that the worms are placed on? The location of the test area? The size of the worms?

What's in the kit?

The kit for I'm a Worm, Get Me Out of Here contains everything you need to run the experiment in school including:

  • spaghetti
  • food colouring
  • notes for teachers, students and technicians
  • RSPB pocket guide to birds.

How long will it take?

The experiment is designed to be flexible. It's up to the user how many times the worms are bred, so you can fit it to the time available. Students can also extend the project to investigate a number of different factors.

How do I order?

Kits can be purchased from here

Even without a kit you can still carry out Survival Rivals experiments - see the not got a kit page for more information.