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Winter Wildlife Detective

You're about to become a Winter Wildlife Detective

So dress for the outdoors, grab your supplies, and you're on your way!

Supply List:

  • backpack
  • magnifying glass
  • binoculars
  • notebook
  • pencils
  • camera
  • warm clothing & footwear

Watch for the Big Stuff

Watch all around you for movement on the ground or in the branches. Your eyes alone are a great tool, but binoculars can help too. Binoculars help you to see things far away, making them appear closer than they really are.

Search for the Small Stuff

Get up close to objects or crouch down to the ground for a closer look. If you have a magnifying glass, you can take an even closer look. Look for tracks in the snow and places where animals have been eating.

Practice Focusing in on Natural Sounds

Kids listening for the sounds of nature
  • Can you hear chickadees calling?
  • The crunch of snow under foot?
  • The wind rattling ice-covered branches?

Keep a Record

A good detective keeps track of what he or she finds, so bring along your notebook, and perhaps a camera, to record your findings. Bring a field guide (a book with information about identifying natural objects) too. In your notebook, you can write down what you've seen or heard and your thoughts about your discoveries. You can make sketches of things you've seen or tape in photos. Bring along a ruler so you can measure tracks. Tip: Use a pencil, just in case it's too cold for your pen to write properly.

Photo: Thomas D. Lindsay