April 22, 2009
- Family Fun
- Upcoming DEC Events
- Hudson Valley - Stony Kill Farm Environmental Education Center and Tivoli Bays Visitors Center
- Capital District - Five Rivers Environmental Education Center and Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center
- Adirondacks - Adirondack Park Agency Visitors Interpretive Centers at Newcomb and Paul Smiths
- Central New York - Rogers Environmental Education Center
- Western New York - Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center
Water-it's our most precious natural resource. We turn on the faucet and water magically appears. But how does it get to our homes? The February issue of Conservationist for Kids has a lot of great facts about the water cycle and New York's watersheds.
Each year the state celebrates Water Week during the first full week of May. This year Water Week occurs May 3-9, 2009 and to mark it, DEC will launch its new water webpages that will feature information, FAQs, and new page updates throughout the year. A major feature wil be a set of pages about New York State's watersheds. Be sure to visit the watershed pages to find out about the watershed where you live.
For a fun activity to learn about where water comes from and how to use it wisely, visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website "A Day in the Life of a Drop".
Send us an e-mail and tell us what you think about Outdoor Discovery.
Follow the Water
Plants play an important part of the water cycle through a process called transpiration-how plants lose moisture through their leaves by evaporation. Here is an experiment to help you see this process. On a sunny morning, find a tree branch that is easy to reach. Take a plastic bag and cover a cluster of leaves with the bag, securing it with a piece of string. Return to your tree later in the evening. Carefully remove the bag so that you don't spill any of the water that has collected. Measure the water using a teaspoon. How much water did the tree leaves give off? Count how many leaves were in the bag, and divide that the amount of water into the number of leaves to find out how much water one single leaf gives off each day.
Water also comes to the earth in the form of precipitation. When the ice and snow melts in the spring, it runs down streams and into other bodies of water. Try this experiment to learn about what happens to the volume of water when ice melts. Take three glasses and fill one with ice cubes, one with crushed ice and one with water. Make a prediction about what will happen to the first two glasses when the ice melts: Will the glasses overflow? After the ice melts completely, mark the level of water in the glass. Which has the highest level (volume)? Was your prediction correct? How would floating chunks of ice affect the level of water in a lake or ocean? What about after it melted? Hint: Ice has a greater volume than the same mass of liquid water.
Looking for an adventure this summer for your teenager? Check out DEC's Environmental Education Camps.
Read Conservationist for Kids for more information and activities!
Saturday, April 25 at 2:00 PM
Orioles, catbirds and phoebes are among the birds we hope to see and hear on this easy walk.
Earth Day at Stony Kill
Sunday, April 26 from 12:00 to 4:00 PM
Help us celebrate Earth Day through nature discoveries and environmental activities, including family scavenger hunts, leaf crafts, tree planting and a talk on honeybees with a live demonstration.
Spring Wildflower Walk
Saturday, May 2 at 2:00 PM
Trout lily, trillium, bloodroot and rue anemone are among the delicate flowers gracing our woodlands. We'll look for them in bloom on this leisurely ramble.
Tivoli Bays Visitors Center
Birds of Prey on the Estuary!
Wednesday, April 29 from 4:30PM to 5:30 PM
Do you have eyes like a hawk? Check out the amazing adaptations these birds have to become hunters of the sky!
Outdoors After School
Every Thursday from February 26 to June 18 from 3:30 PM to 5:00 PM
A nature walk for grade-school children and their caregivers. Each week will feature a different theme and habitat.
Peepers and Frog Watching
Friday, April 24 at 7:00 PM
Trek to the wetlands to find those tiny frogs with the big voices. Bring a flashlight. No nets, please.
Friday, May 1 at 7:00 PM
Join us as we search field and fen for a rumor of snipe, the whisper of woodcock and other things that go bump in the night. Bring your own "snipe trap." (Use your imagination.)
Opossums and Their Relatives
Saturday, May 2 at 10:00 AM
Join us outdoors for a walk and talk about the habits and habitats of opossums and other animals.
Saturday, May 2 at 2:00 PM
A surprising level of intelligence has been discovered in elephants and dolphins. An indoor presentation on these amazing findings and a walk to discover intelligence in local wildlife.
Call 518-456-0655 to register for all events. Cost: $2.00/person, $5.00/family, children under 5 free.
Terrific Turtles of the Pine Bush
Saturday, April 25 from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
In this program, we will learn which turtle species live in the Pine Bush and hike to a vernal pond to observe turtle behavior in their own habitat. Registration is required. Cost: $2.00/person, $5.00/family, children under 5 free.
Adirondack Park Agency Newcomb Visitors Center
Bluebird Nestbox Workshop
Saturday, April 25 from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM
Bluebirds in the Adirondacks? You bet! All you need is open grassland (a yard) and a nest box or two. Cost: $10/box. Call 518-582-2000 to register.
Adirondack Park Agency Paul Smiths Visitors Center
Mini Packbasket Workshop
Saturday, April 25 from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Kids over 9 and adults can create a mini packbasket, perfect for a special teddy bear. Cost: $25 per basket; $22 for Adirondack Park Institute members. Call 518-327-3000 to register.
Saturday, April 25 at 7:30 PM
Find out which amphibians are serenading us as we search for them along the trails. Wear boots and bring a flashlight.
Saturday, May 2 from Noon to 4:00 PM
Celebrate Earth Day, Arbor Day and May Day on this fun-filled afternoon.
Advance registration is required. Call 716-683-5959.
Friday, April 24 at 8:00 PM
Learn about our local owls and listen for their calls on a walk in the woods. This program is for adults and children age 8 and older only.
Stories in the Woods
Saturday, April 25 at 10:00 AM
Listen to a nature story, followed by a short walk in the woods. For children ages 3-5 and their caregivers.
Saturday, May 2 from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Come volunteer for our annual spring trail cleanup. Scout groups, families and others are all invited to help make our trails accessible for the summer. Bring rakes and shovels and wear appropriate clothing. Snacks and lunch will be provided.
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