Nature Study – Bolsa Chica Wetlands

We’ve done the Bolsa Chica Wetlands in Huntington Beach before.  In fact, it was one of the first posts on this blog!  I love being able to look back and see how much has changed.  Green Bubbles was just a little bit older than Little Miss and Little Miss was very close to Megatron’s age in that post.  Things sure do seem to change quickly!  And I promise, both Green Bubbles and myself are better artists now.

To make it a little more interesting I created a scavenger hunt for the kids at the last minute and printed up extras for the kids in our group.  We had a bigger turn out this week which is always fun.  If you want to download a copy of my wetlands scavenger hunt just click below!  I did make one little change from the orginal we had with us.  We didn’t see many insects so I changed one of the insect spots to an animal under the water.  We saw so many things that could have fit in there I kept wishing I had put that instead.

My kids LOVE the giant bridge over the shallow water leading from the parking lot to the wetlands.  It goes right through the wetlands and the water is clear and so easy to see many interesting things.  The kids took their time staring into the water between running circles around me.  And not just my two little ones either!  I had a whole posse of kids circling me. 

 We found a lot of sea life in the water.  In the picture below there are three crabs.  Can you find them all?  I’ll give you a hint, there’s one at the very bottom of the picture near the shore.

 It’s a little easier to see the crabs in this picture.  We saw these guys on our way back out and the kids stopped to watch them eat the algae off of the rock. 

Here’s Green Bubbles starting to fill out his paper.  I had him draw a picture in each box of what he saw that qualified for that subject.  Something rough was an old log in the parking lot, something smooth was a rock, etc.  He really enjoyed doing this until we got to the last three.  We didn’t really see any insects which were two of our boxes, and something that is changing is a bit of an abstract concept for a five year old I think.
We had a lot of littles with us today which I always love to see, especially when they hold each others hands and walk along together.  Little Miss loves when she has friends her age to play with.

 There were a lot of snowy egrets around.  I managed to catch this one as he just started to fly off!  Of course, this picture was with my cell phone so the quaulity isn’t the best.  I’m going to try and remember to bring my normal point and shoot camera next week!

 And since we are talking about bad picture quality…. We saw these guys swimming around in the water.  It was hard to tell but they had triangle like bodies and we thought they were some type of ray at first.  But then their tails looked more like a shark and it was just confusing.  I’m happy to report the mystery has been solved however.  They are Shovelnose guitarfish!  I love being able to identify something new when we do our nature days.

And this is the reason I always have a first aid kit with me. Green Bubbles fell in the gravel type trail, twice.  The first time he scrapped up his knee and the second time was his elbow.  We have some great nature study friends who volenteered wipes to clean it off with and a bandaid to cover it.  Strawberries!  I had everything in my first aid kit as well, but I was busy with Megatron at the time so welcomed the help.  We made our exit shortly after this so Green Bubbles could recooperate.  He’s fine now, happily playing a game on his computer.  His elbow is working just fine.

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