I had a very fun and successful week!!! I am excited to announce that our first field trip on Wednesday was pretty fun and informative. Sierra Grande preschool, kindergarten, and 1st graders came out to Blanca Wetlands for the ENTIRE day. We started to introduce ourselves to the teachers, staff and a parent that came along the trip, while the small-bladder little people were making runs to the potty. We had a lot of activities in the parking lot such as how to build a wetland, then after our game activity we walked to show them a real wetland. We had them doing a scavenger hunt, such as look for something that crawls, smells good, etc.. So kids were out there exploring and looking at nature. I liked the part were everyone thought the wetlands were surrounded by snow, but we made them look and grab it, then they realized it was salt crystals! They got super stoked about that. We also had 4 stations each with their educational purpose such as wetland bingo, senses game, macro invertebrate catch with nets, and partner game. At the end, we let everyone run in the water as you can see in the above picture, the smile on the kid’s face was 100% worth everything.
A few incidents happened, a girl’s croc shoe got lost in between the mud and the water, the teachers and us were trying to find it, but she ended up leaving home without a shoe. A young boy got a little deep in the wetlands and got really stuck in the mud, maybe above his feet were all covered in mud. A teacher got all the way in and got him out, she was pushing him out hard, it took a hot minute to do so. We had circle time and everyone discussed their favorite part of the field trip, 90% said “get in the water”, shocking right? A few others said “hanging out with you guys”, broke my heart in pieces. Everything turned out fantastic!!
Another big highlight of the week, we finally documented snowy plovers in the San Luis Valley Lands!!!! We got super excited to spot 5 of them, they were so hard to find, some of them were very mellow and would not move so they can camouflage extremely well with the salt crystals. However, the birder pointed out great tips to spot them easier next time. We also saw a peregrine falcon flying FAST around the site, that was phenomenal, as well as an ibis and godwit. Pretty interesting birds on a Friday morning. I went back to the office to get the field manager signature and send off our sharp, well done grant application to the Washington office. That was a little taste of my week written electronically to all of you blog fanatics. See ya next week, same site!! Stay tuned!