Nature Study: Enviromental Nature Center

This week we hit up the environmental nature center.  In the summer there have a really cool butterfly house full of mostly monarch butterflies, but a few other species as well.  We go every year.  Green Bubbles loves finding the caterpillars hanging around and gets so excited when we find them. A special treat this year, we got there just in time to watch two different butterflies emerge from their chrysalis. 

It was also a good oppunity to talk about how nature sometimes makes mistakes.  One of the butterflies just wasn’t doing well, got stuck on his way out, and I’m fairly certain wasn’t done going through his metamorphsis.  The 2nd butterfly was in a hurry to fly.  He was out fast and climbed to the very top of his box.  We found him on the dirt shortly after.  He was in such a hurry to fly, there was no time to wait for his wings to stretch and dry out.  Poor little butterfly.  I couldn’t help myself and asked the kids if there were ever in to much of a hurry to do something too.  I got some laughs.

The ENC is totally free to park and enter.  They have a really cool nature center with a lot of hands on things, live animals, coloring pages, books to read, and even a Native American hut with some tools they used in the past in our area and information about how they lived and games they played.

Here’s our pictures from the day!

Watching the snakes.

Inside the hut.

Butterfly #1 coming out!

Caterpillar

Butterfly #2 on left, newly hatched but not witnessed butterfly on right.

Dead butterfly, allowed us to get a really close up look.

There’s a stream near by that we always go to after the butterfly house.  We eat our lunches on the pinic tables and the kids play around the stream making bridges to cross with fallen branches and playing inside the giant pine tree near by.  I always bring clean clothes for the kids because, if they somehow manage to not to soaked by falling into the stream, they still get plenty dirty!

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