Permanent Exhibition » BiodiverCITY

  • Visitors in BiodiverCITY - Bezoekers in BiodiverCITY - Des visiteurs dans BiodiverCITY
  • Young girl looking at a fox in BiodiverCITY - Jong meisje bekijkt een vos in BiodiverCITY - Jeune fille regarde un renard dans BiodiverCITY
  • Model of a sprintail in BiodiverCITY - Maquette van een springstaart in BiodiverCITY - Maquette d'un collembole dans BiodiverCITY
  • Visitors in BiodiverCITY - Bezoekers in BiodiverCITY - Des visiteurs dans BiodiverCITY

BiodiverCITY

The city is not just pavements, walls and concrete. It is often unexpectedly full of animal life and vegetation!

Who would have thought that a slowworm could be hiding in a corner of your garden? Have you ever tried to follow a blue-winged grasshopper along the railway verge? Or have you experienced a day in the life of a hedgehog? Even though the city may sometimes appear gloomy and grey, it is full of surprises!

Everywhere in BiodiverCITY, there are specimens, photos, films and interactive installations help to explain what biodiversity in the city entails. Moreover, you can play an active role with the aid of computer simulations and learn what you can do to protect the biodiversity in the city.

Remarkable Elements

Peregrine Falcons
  • The nest with three chicks and one egg
  • Female peregrine falcon, in the air

The population decline of the peregrine falcon started in the 1940s and intensified in the 1960s, when the species was thought to be extinct in Belgium. The decline was mainly due to the widespread use of organochlorine pesticides in agriculture. Today, however, the falcons are back, and have even entered our cities where prey such as pigeons are plentiful!

Since 2004, a pair has nested every spring in one of the towers of the Saint Michael and Saint Gudula Cathedral, in the heart of Brussels. In town, their preferred prey is rock doves. Every year, throughout April and May, you can follow their little family as it develops, from the eggs being laid to the fledging of the young eyasses, online at www.peregrinefalcons.be.

Minibeasts
  • Magnified model of the pill millipede Glomeris marginata, a myriapod
  • Magnified model of the woodlouse Porcellio spinicornis, a crustacean
  • Magnified model of the oribatid mite, Rhysotritia ardua, an acarine
  • Magnified model of the larva of the cockchafer beetle, Melolontha melolontha, an insect

Earthworms, millipedes, pill millipedes, woodlice, springtails, cockchafer larvae, and acarines…The soil is home to a wide variety of species of invertebrates and many of these creatures measure no more than a few millimetres in length.

So that you can get a better idea of what they look like, our model maker has created some amazing magnified versions.

City Foxes
  • In the city, foxes can find food all year round, mainly in our bins
  • A fox made of felt in one of our homemade animations

Over the last few years, we have been seeing more and more red foxes in the city. Often, they live in the greener areas of the suburbs, where there are plenty of places to find shelter.They dig their dens in wastelands, parks, gardens, woodland copses, and beside railway tracks.

Foxes are omnivores and opportunists: they find plenty of food in gardens (small rodents, earthworms, beetles, fruits, and berries), pet food bowls, and, of course, bins!

While you’re here, take the time to watch the four short animated silent films created by our Multimedia team, in which the paths of a fox, a hedgehog, and a ladybird cross.

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