Monday, March 20, 2017

3.20.17  Birds Enrichment Class - Wixon Innovation Middle School
South Dennis, MA

It's the first day of Spring!  Yes, it was windy out there, but I was excited to get the bird nerds outside today in the warm sunshine.  Last week, I noticed a tree that had fallen and I wanted to inspect why it happened, its root structure, why we thought the tree had not survived a recent storm... so many questions!  That's what I love about science and nature.  I was curious about it myself, but I was even more interested in checking out this tree with the bird nerds to find out what we could discover.  I also brought my "Nature Shapes" ( recycled pizza box cardboard wrapped in duct tape - they last forever ) along for our walk.  I am often reminding students, and whomever may listen, that "...we are all connected...".  When I mention this, I mean every living thing.  The Nature Shapes can be used as a sort of a frisbee, and we discuss the organisms and specimens we discover within the shape wherever it lands...a tiny measurement of ground... and how what we find, relates to birds and their healthy (sometimes unhealthy) ecosystem.

There was one bird sighting in the crazy winds... a lone Ring-billed Gull. (double click photos to enlarge)

Which birds do you want to learn about?

What's in this Nature Shape?

Examining all that they could see within the Nature Shape

                               Lichens covering the branches of this soon to be flowering tree

How can you resist climbing a tree?

                                          This pine needle bunch and tiny pine cone looked
                                                                " a flower..."

White pine, uprooted by a storm, 
though previously attacked by beetles & covered in lichen

What/who made this hole in the tree bark?

Noticing beetle trails on the underside of the tree bark

Roly poly bug on the edge of the bark... trying to shelter him/herself

Doing her/his best to stay out of sunlight, for safety

                                      Searching the edge of the woods on the school grounds

                                                      A new Nature Shape perspective

Nature Shapes can help us to understand
how we are all connected... even the tiniest space
can define how healthy an ecosystem is.

Nature Shape discoveries

Identifying natural occurrences in the Nature Shape

Happy Birding young Bird Nerds!

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