Thursday, August 13, 2015

8.13.15 - Cape Cod Museum Of Natural History - KidSummer - Birding 101
Brewster, MA

Having the Cape Cod Museum Of Natural History to ourselves for a little while is worthy of taking advantage of!  We hung out in Bird Alley choosing different species of birds to sketch & color.  We had conversations about the different species and habitats in which the birds we were interested in lived, and what they ate.  There are even some bird-built nests preserved in bird alley so you are able to compare the size of the bird, to the size of the nest.  The rounded out space that is left in order to protect the egg is typically about the size of the bird who built its breast.  That way, the eggs are completely covered and intentionally protected by the parent(s) from harm.  An alarming statistic about wild bird eggs:  of the eggs laid by all species of birds, only 5% live to breeding age.  That's hard to deal with, at least for me.  So - one of the main reasons I LOVE that folks, children in particular, are interested in birds, is hopefully to impart peace for the birds.  Admire them, respect them, help if / when needed in moderation, and you will be protecting them. 

We did make it to the beach, and I'll tell ya... I truly HATED to say, "Sorry bird nerds... I gotta get you back for pick up time!"  That was a drag.  It was an absolutely perfect day, and to be torn away from Cape Cod Bay... slightly torturous.  They did not complain though - so good!
These bird nerds absorb so much during the week we have together and I'm able to test what they retain right away on a bird walk.  They can now name certain species just by their familiar call (Black-capped Chickadee, American Crow, Song Sparrow, Osprey, American Goldfinch, Gray Catbird) and I like to believe they'll keep learning new songs and calls.  I heard back from the parents & grandparents of some of the bird nerds and I've heard stories about GIANT heavy field guides being dragged to the beach - HAPPILY & WILLINGLY by an 8 year old boy!  Also - each and every bird nerd from this week felt compelled to visit book stores, each choosing a bird field guide they liked best.  Happy tears...  How awesome is THAT?!  I'm so proud of them!
(double click images to enlarge)

Our List:
House Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Black-capped Chickadee
Song Sparrow
American Goldfinch
Gray Catbird
American Crow
Eastern Kingbird
Great Black-backed Gull
Laughing Gull
Herring Gull
Ring-billed Gull
European Starling
Common Tern

Hooded Merganser

Great-horned Owl

Northern Cardinal

Working on an Osprey sketch

Scarlet Tanager 

                                                                     Baltimore Oriole


Snapping Turtle

Wonderful illustrations!

Inside the Inflatable Gray Whale!

Talking with Susan about whales & birds

Real baleen 

Northern Cardinal - male

Song Sparrow

Northern Cardinal - female

Identifying birds on the new mural in the museum

American Goldfinch

Eastern Kingbird

Gray Catbird 

Mourning Dove

Great Black-backed Gull

Beach feathers

Terns & gulls

The bird nerds brought their own guides - their idea!

It took a minute to acclimate to the water.

This youngster flew RIGHT at us!

Birds, Bird Nerds & Beach...brought to  you
by the letter "B".

Don't miss the gull flying right behind them...

None of us wanted to leave Cape Cod Bay...

Trooper!  It was a quick tiring walk from the beach to the museum, 
but we DID it!  Back in time!

Happy Birding KidSummer Kids!

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