05 June 2012

VNS May Field Trips: Solo Hike.

Students on the solo hike get to put their naturalist skills they've learned to practice--all on their own. I heard many students say that they were surprised by how much they enjoyed being alone on a trail. A few times, they insisted they walk back along the solo hike trail in the opposite direction, again all alone.

Some discoveries:

A tiny, blue egg. I found it along the trail at Fort Missoula, and have yet to get a confirmation of what kind of bird it belongs to! Of course, it is most probable that it was a robin's egg--but it was definitely no bigger than a quarter. Could it have belonged to someone else?

 Here's a chart I found of the sizes of eggs (some of which are blue) from someone in Connecticut. An Eastern bluebird egg is the same size, approximately, as a Western or mountain bluebird.

European Starlings can also have blue eggs. Their eggs are darker and smaller than robins' eggs, a little larger than a bluebird egg, and glossy, but without any spotting. If you want to have a go at IDing the egg we saw, do so in the comments!

 This group of kids at Council Groves enjoyed walking alone, and really loved skipping rocks along the river afterwards. They seemed so enthralled by being alone that I had to run around to gather them back togther to share their discoveries from the solo hike!

 At Fort Missoula, kids ate their snacks all crammed into the big log. These girls were all telling each other about things they had seen, and it from a ways off it seemed like the log itself was chattering.

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