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All About Biodiversity Week

2nd-3rd biodiversity hunters camp caravan e frog jelly 2nd-3rd camp caravan e preschool biodiversity day preschool pond study look at all these creatures

In the last week of April the various classes fan out to vernal pools, wetlands, seeps, ponds, streams and forest, to survey flora and fauna for Biodiversity Week. And of course, the children are very excited to notice all the spring manifestations of nature, coming back to life. We set a school record last year with our biodiversity count of 142. This year, the 2nd-6th grade classes listed 137 different types of plants, fungi and animals with the help of forester Joe Zorzin, and biologists Katrina Walton and Cathy Szal. The later arrival of spring this year reduced the number of plants to be found.

The 4th-6th class visited Lawrence Brook at Doane's Falls and competed to find and identify as many species of plants and animals as possible. The groups spent half their time trawling Lawrence Brook with Cathy, and looking for insects and small organisms in the water. The rest of the time, we looked for various trees, under the guidance of local forester, Joe Zorzin. As always we are very grateful to Joe for sharing his decades-long experience with the class.

The 2nd-3rd grade visited Camp Caravan for a careful look at the creatures living in the pond including wood frog and salamander eggs, dragonfly larvae, mayfly larvae, water boatman, diving beetles, snails, fingernail clams and the ever popular leeches. They also explored woodland trails with Joe Zorzin.

The following day the K-1 class investigated the Camp Caravan pond using nets and magnifying glasses as well as going on a woodland walk with Martin and Lindsey. A small stream captured the children’s attention and they came back to the school wet and happy.

The Preschool visited the vernal pool behind the school with freshwater biologist Cathy Szal. The children saw a number of aquatic insects and the biggest hit was the wood frog egg masses.

You will find the list and count of flora and fauna in the upstairs hallway, along with photos of the children at work in the field.