Happy Owling!

S's and A's drawings of the Barred Owl
S’s and A’s drawings of the Barred Owl

Whether our fascination for owls dates back to ancient, superstitious tales, or whether owls seem naturally more tied to the autumn season, this seems to be the time of year we focus on our nocturnal friends.  This year in science A (11 years old) and S (almost 10) have focused largely on nature studies and have been keeping their own nature journals.  We started the year delving into tree identification.  However, once the leaves began to turn beautiful, earthy colors and gracefully slip from their branches, we turned our attention to the migrating birds in our region.   We are caching bird feeding supplies for the winter in our garage, creating our own pinecone feeders with peanut butter, cornmeal and bird seed, checking out  a plethora of books on birds of Indiana from the library, and making wonderful use of our suburb’s and city’s nature centers.  Some of these nature centers have provided us with fascinating opportunities to see owls up close and personal, like the Eastern screech owl and the Great Horned owl.

Whoo whoo whoooooo!

We have also taken advantage of these centers for their homeschool ornithology classes and clubs.  My boys were enthralled with a nighttime owling walk, and dissecting owl pellets.

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Apologies after the fact for the less than appealing subject of this photo.
Apologies after the fact for the less than appealing subject of this photo.

Their field studies have also inspired them at home as their drawings at the top of this post attest.  Not only have A and S been engaged in owl studies, but G (3 years old) has participated as well.  While I deemed him a trifle young for owl pellet dissection, he has enjoyed the nature centers, joined us on owl walks crafted his own foam owl, and watched documentaries like National Geographic’s Owls: The Silent Hunters.  He has also helped me compile some of our favorite owl readings, which you will find in the next post.

Do you have a favorite owl?  Have you participated in any other fun or educational owl activities?  Let me know!  Happy Owling!

November 2013 052

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