Saturday, April 6, 2013

Farmington Bay

Each year we take our second graders on a field trip to Farmington Bay to see the birds, to learn about habitats and study adaptations. We went two weeks ago, and we were able to see bald eagles as well as many other birds. I've always meant to take my own kids, but never have. So this past Wednesday, we went to Farmington Bay to see the birds. We didn't see any bald eagles, but we saw many different types of ducks and many Canada geese. Did you know Canada geese mate for life and are rarely seen without their mate? You usually see them in pairs.
We saw many red-winged blackbirds. We saw seagulls and great blue herons and killdeer and several other types of birds.

I was able to show my girls coyote and fox scat and show them a fox's den (that may/may not still be used by the fox...the lady that guided us on our field trip wasn't sure...the entrance she showed us had caved in, and so she said the fox may just be using a different entrance or may have moved to a new location.) I showed them vole trails. Then we went into the education rooms and saw the stuffed birds and looked at all of the displays. The girls enjoyed comparing their arm lengths to a bald eagle's wing span.

They really loved using footprint molds to make different animals footprints in the sand. I enjoyed showing them the skulls from several animals as well as birds' nests, and furs from the coyote, fox, badger, muskrat, skunk and raccoon. We looked at and read about invertebrates, brine shrimp, and snakes. The girls learned a lot and we all enjoyed this outing. There are over 5 million birds that come to Farmington Bay and over 200 different kinds. We were able to talk about how important it is to protect their habitat and we were able to identify some of the birds we saw. We want to go back in the fall when there are pelicans. They are so cool. And the girls want to go earlier in the spring to see the bald eagles. I'm so glad we went.