Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center is offering the following activities for the month of May. The Nature Center is located at 1401 N.W. Park Road in Blue Springs. All activities are free, but registration is required, unless otherwise noted. Call 816-228-3766 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit www.mdc.mo.gov/burroakwoods.
• Snake & Critter Feeding Schedule: For all ages – Discover what’s for dinner at Burr Oak Woods as the captive amphibians, fish and turtles enjoy their feast from 3 to 3:30 p.m. every Wednesday and Saturday. The snakes will be fed May 11 and 25. Walk-ins welcome.
• Missouri’s Hidden Reptiles: For all ages, 1-2 p.m. May 5. Did you know Missouri is home to 13 unique species of lizards? You may even have one in your own backyard! Come learn some of the secrets of these often-hidden reptiles. No registration required.
• Little Acorns – Sky Scavengers: for ages 3 to 5 with an adult. 10-11 a.m. or 1-2 p.m. May 9. Eww! What’s that smell? Dinner! Come in and learn about one of Missouri’s most misunderstood wild animals, the turkey vulture. Using a keen sense of smell, these birds are well adapted to a job that many take for granted.
• Home School – Amphibians: 10-11-30 a.m. for ages 6-8, 9-11 and 12-18; or 1-2:30 p.m. for ages 6-8 and 9-11 May 9. Hop, jump and leap in to explore the watery world of frogs, toads and salamanders! Discover how living in two worlds has some extra challenges and benefits for these amazing creatures.
• Discover Nature Fishing for Families: 9:30-11:30 a.m. May 12. This is a great time of year to take your family fishing. We will teach some fishing basics, provide equipment and worms and then let you practice your new fishing skills. Kids who attend will be entered in a drawing at the end of the summer for a new fishing pole and tackle box. Lessons 1 and 2 of the Discover Nature Fishing program are included in this class.
• Citizen Scientist Saturday – The Lost Ladybug Project: For all ages, 1-2:30 p.m. May 12. In the old nursery rhyme ‘Ladybug, Ladybug’ the ladybug flies away home. But where have all the native ladybugs really gone? Ladybug populations around the world are changing and scientists are trying to learn why. Ladybugs play an important role as predators of insect pests. We will join the team at The Lost Ladybug project to help solve the mystery of where the ladybugs have gone.
• Wild Edible Series – It’s a Spring Tea Party: For adults, 1-3 p.m. May 15. Come and enjoy a cup of tea as you learn how to harvest and dry delicious native leaves for later use.
• Babes in the Woods – Pond Play: For babes under 36 months, 10-11 a.m. May 16. Little ones love the water. It’s a great way to experience nature on a warm day. Join Naturalist Lisa at the education pond for some splashing with your babe.
• Conservation Kids – Evening Under the Stars: For ages 7 to 13 with parent/ guardian, 6-9 p.m., May 18. Kids, grab your parents for an unforgettable evening under the stars! Let’s celebrate families exploring nature together by participating in activities such as canoeing, fishing and night hikes. We will conclude our special evening with songs, stories and s’mores around a campfire.
• Firefly Watch: For all ages, 2-3 p.m. May 19. Discover how to collect data on these enchanting glowing beetles for Firefly Watch. Learn all about fireflies and discover how your family can become citizen scientists in your own backyard. No registration required.
• Firefly Experience: For all ages, 8-9:30 p.m. May 19. Blinking and dancing in the evening sky, the magic and beauty of fireflies is breathtaking. Use this evening to learn more about these favorite insects. Then hike into the darkening forest to watch the fireflies appear.
• Fishing Without A Pole: For ages 7 and older; ages 7-15 must be accompanied by a participating adult, 6:30-9 p.m. May 26. Trotlines, jug lines, bows and gigs have been used to catch fish in Missouri throughout the generations. But what are they and how do you use them? Join us as we explore some of these different methods of catching fish. We will learn how to set and run checks on lines that have been set in the education pond.
• Rockin’ & Readin’ Nature Tales: For ages 2 and older, 11 a.m.-noon May 26. Join us for story hour as we lead you on fantastic nature adventures! We will meet birds, mammals and all sorts of magnificent creatures! We will cross rivers, discover mysteries within the forest and fly across the prairies. Our imaginations are the only limits. Walk-ins welcome.
– Jillayne Ritchie