Winter 2014 - Wildlife is Everywhere
Coexisting with Wildlife
Wildlife is all around us. Birds and squirrels are easy for urban dwellers to spot, but our cities and suburbs play host to other wildlife too-deer, coyote and raccoons, to name a few. Suburban and rural residents are accustomed to wildlife, large and small. We see stories in our local newspapers about bears and deer in urban and suburban neighborhoods, and problems with wildlife were covered in a story in the December 9, 2013 issue of Time magazine "America's Pest Problems:It's Time to Cull the Herds". As human populations expand, our communities encroach on wildlife habitat. Interactions with wild animals are bound to occur. Whether the interactions are positive or negative often depends on us.
We can manage our interactions with wildlife by understanding what makes one habitat more attractive than another for different species. We also can ensure we don't unwittingly "invite" wildlife to cause problems for us, or that we don't cause problems for wildlife through our actions. This issue of Conservationist for Kids looks at our interactions with wildlife and how to make them positive. There are many opportunities for discussion in classrooms, from how to enhance habitat for the wildlife we want nearby (e.g., birds at the bird feeder) to how we can discourage unwanted wildlife (e.g., removing trash to avoid problems with raccoons and skunks).
For teachers who have participated in a Project WILD or Project Learning Tree workshop, the activities listed below complement the winter 2014 issue of Conservationist for Kids. Visit DEC's Workshops for Educators webpage for information about workshops and how to obtain curriculum and activity guides.
And the Wolf Wore Shoes
Project Learning Tree:
Habitat Pen Pals
Did You Notice?