Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Pollinators Nature Program

We went to a wonderful program at a local nature center yesterday.  They do these programs periodically - our river wading a couple months ago was at the same place.  I'm hoping to do more of these next year.

We started out in the education center with a variety of information stations about what animals are pollinators, what pollinators like which plants, and some crafts.

George made a "Stampy CATerpillar".

Vicki made "holiday colors" caterpillars - red/green/white, purple/pink/yellow, and orange/black/purple. 

They also had wings and hats for dress-up while waiting to start the hike.

Along the trail, they had cut-outs of various butterflies and caterpillars for the kids to find.  Once one was found, the naturalist would talk about that particular species.

We hiked out to a meadow where we planted milkweed that the center had received as part of a grant.  The kids had a good time planting them, but it was hot and sunny so Squidy had to take a break to sit in the shade for a little while.  He also had to borrow a hat from a friend that came to the activity with us.  We aren't Mets fans ;-)

The kids haven't done a lot of nature stuff in the past couple of years, and Squidy doesn't really care for heat or mud or water or cold or..... but I'm hoping to build up his tolerance by spending lots of time outside and doing many more of these programs.   Another mom and I are also considering starting a nature/geocaching group in the fall.
At the end of the program, they gave out native plants to everyone.  They want to encourage planting species that will help the native wildlife.  Our yard is pretty much a native wildflower meadow anyway but we took home milkweed and heartleaf aster to plant, as well as two varieties of milkweed seed to plant in the fall.  Maybe we'll start seeing more butterflies.

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