Nature Study – Shipley Nature Center

This week we went to Shipley Nature Center in Huntington Beach.  It was a beautiful day out.  Although it was supposed to be in the high 60’s it felt much warmer while standing out in the sun.  Little Miss stayed home this week because she wasn’t feeling well that morning so it was just me and the boys!  And our friends of course.

We were early this time, which doesn’t happen very often for us!  It gave us a great opportunity to quietly sit and observe what was around us.  There was some road kill on the other side of the parking lot which I believe used to be a rabbit.  We got to see a turkey vulture circle to scavenge what was left.  Another car pulled into the lot and the vulture never made it to his meal so we were never able to actually watch him feed though.  I’m not sure if I should be disappointed in the lost educational opportunity, or grateful that we haven’t had a concrete example of a carnivore or scavenger yet. 

We just started our bird study this week for science so I pointed out the bird house we passed under.  You could see a little something sticking out so I know there was a nest inside but we never did see the bird who lived there.

The boys loved the larger wood chips on the path near the redwood forest and started to collect some to ‘build’ a tree with them.  I loved their creativity as one of our friends even said they were going to paint it to make it look like a real tree again.

There were many squirrels around as well. Some were rolling around in the leaf piles.  This one above had something in his mouth and made me wonder if he was working on his nest.  I didn’t realize tree squirrel nests look very similar to rats nests in trees!  So many of the nests I’ve seen this winter may have actually been squirrels. 

And if you’ve read my blog at all before, you know I can’t resist the odd mushroom picture!  I’ve never seen one like this before and thought it was interesting.  It was actually quite small as well.

There was a sign at one point warning about stinging nettle.  These weeds when touched actually produce a stinging, burning sensation so it’s best not to touch them.  Wear gloves when weeding if you have these in your yard.

Megatron was thankful to get out of the ergo and walking around at our stop.  Oh, did I mention, he’s walking now!  The first year goes by so fast and we are quickly approaching a 1st birthday in a few weeks. 

It was a beautiful day and the kids all seemed to enjoy themselves.  Everything was very green and we saw so many butterflies.  I always feel so sad when we have to miss our nature days. They have a way of soothing my soul and helping me deal with days when the kids seem to just try my patience.

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