This week we have been preparing for the YMCA camps to visit the refuge this summer. There are many scheduled field trips and assemblies planned for this month, and we have been doing some cleaning to get ready for these trips. Each refuge visit will consist of a hike on the refuge trails and some fun activities along the way. We have included a short presentation on Burrowing Owls, a chance to track a few creatures using a GPS tracking device, the opportunity to use plankton nets to collect samples from the refuge, and a last station in the back of the refuge office where the kids can plant milkweed seeds and ask any questions they might have of the ranger on site. The first assembly will be held at Central Elementary School in National City, and we will meet up with the San Diego Zoo to present an interactive presentation. At the assembly, the kids will learn all about pollution and how it is affecting not only the animals in our communities but also the animals far away in the ocean. They will also learn how to pack for a hiking trip and the rules and behavior for protected lands, as well as what they can do to make a difference at home. After a full morning of training and walking the trails at the refuge before the kids arrived, I would say the field day went pretty smoothly.

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