Prince George NatureKids

Volunteer Co-Leaders: Guy Scharf
Presently seeking volunteer co-leader. Click here for more information. 
Greetings! **Please remember to bring your passports to the outings, and
be prepared for all weather conditions!  Unless otherwise indicated, all
activities will go between an hour and an hour and a half.**

Upcoming 2016 Explorer Days

Christmas Bird Count 4 Kids
Sunday Dec.11th, 2016.
9 am sharp – noon with lunch provided
Meet at Exploration Place

Minimum number needed to hold this Explorer Day is 10 members.
Please RSVP here before Wed. Dec. 7th so that we have enough food and leaders.

We will break into small groups, each group having a experienced ‘birder’ as a guide and will spend from 1-2 hours in various bird rich areas in Prince George. When we meet back at Exploration Place at 12, we will tally our bird counts and this will be followed with hot drinks, pizza and more good times. Nature Mentors will be Cathy Antoniazzi and Michelle Sims (former club leader).
NOTE: dress warmly, bring binoculars if you have them, a snack for the time spent out in the field, and passports. If you have any food concerns, please bring your own.

Past Explorer Days

BC Rivers Day
Sunday September 25th, 7:30pm

Amphibian Road Surveys
Saturday September 10th, 7:30pm

To help protect our amphibian creatures, we will once again be participating in road surveys – led by Mark Thompson – our local amphibian expert. We will meet at the UNBC parking lot C, near the maintenance building. This is a wonderful opportunity for our NatureKids to participate in field work with an objective of saving more amphibians. Refer to sent email for more details 

Amphibian Day

Wednesday August 30th

Amphibian Day for people of all ages on Wednesday August 30th at the John Prince Research Forest north of Fort St John. Refer to the PDF sent by email for more details!

-Bus transportation will be provided to and from JPRF, but sign up soon to reserve your -spot.

-Pick-up 8:30 am at Kwah Hall in Fort St. James.

-Families including children of all ages are invited. Wear rain gear and boots!

-Events for kids age 0-6 yrs old including parents/guardians will be held from 10-12:30 pm.
-Kids 7 yrs old and up can stay for events until 4:30 pm.
-Adult supervision will be provided. Transportation leaves JPRF at 1 pm and 5 pm.
-An Elder(s) from Nak’Azdli will be present.
-Permission forms must be signed – they will be provided when you register.

MacMillan Creek Fishing Park
Sunday June 5th 

2 pm
Come and learn how Department of Fisheries and Oceans captures and identifies juvenile fish in small streams (McMillian Creek) and larger streams (Nechako River) using nets and traps. We will learn how to capture and identify aquatic invertebrates (bugs that live in the water) using nets, and what insects the fish in streams and lakes/ponds like to eat. We will also capture, and learn about, some of the bugs from McMillian Creek

Sunday May 8th
9 am

Meet at the parking lot of the railway museum adjoining Cottonwood Park

Many species of birds are just waiting to be seen, listened to and identified. Bring your bird cards, binoculars (if you like), your passports and a snack that can be shared at our after birding picnic which will be about 10.30. Oh…and don’t forget your sense of wonder and your enthusiasm !

Cathy Antoniazzi and Michelle Sims will be your Nature Mentor birding guides for this adventure.

Birds, Birds, Birds
Sunday April 17th, 2016

What kinds of birds are in Prince George in the Spring? What kinds of things do we look for when trying to identify a bird? What do they eat? Where do they live the rest of the year? How do you use binoculars to see the birds better? Join us in this entertaining outting and get started on a livelong passion for birding. Victor Bopp will lead us in questions, activities and games which will be followed by a walk through the Hudson Bay wetland path on a hunt for spring birds. We will start at Exploration Place (main room) at 2pm. Bring your passports and warm clothes for the outside portion or our adventure. If you have them, bring binoculars and perhaps a camera. (we have some extra binoculars) Who knows what we will see!

Winter Survival
Sunday February 28th
Moore’s Meadows Foothills

Once again we are going to be led on an outing by enthusiastic university students – this time talking about how both humans and the natural world adapt and survive the winter.

Winter Animal Tracks and Signs
Sunday January 24th
2 pm
UNBC students have been working hard to lead a special program for us: “Animal trails and animal tails: put on your detective hat and join us to uncover a winter mystery!”

Dress warmly as we will be outside between 1 – 1 1/2 hours. We hope you will support the students by coming out and participating in the program they are preparing. Please RSVP by Wednesday evening so that I can tell them approximately how many participants will be attending.

Sunday December 13 – 2 PM at Exploration Place 

Jovanka Djordevich will provide a workshop on building solstice candle lamps (different than last time!) so that families will be all ready to participate in the Prince George solstice activities on December 21st. Thank you to Exploration Place for providing us with a room to create our lanterns!
Bring a glass jar that is big enough to put your hand in.

Sunday November 15 – 1 PM at the Spruce Trailhead by UNBC

This progam will be led by two local First Nations residents. We will walk up to their pit house (approximate 10 – 15 minute walk). Once there, Edie and her husband will tell us about the pit house itself (its function, use, life in the old times ) and plants, herbs and animals used from areas like this one by local First Nations people. They will also hopefully light a fire in the pit house and to teach the children to do bannock on a stick.

This will be an incredible opportunity to learn about how First Nations lived and survived during the winter time.

Sunday October 18th 

Vanderhoof Sturgeon Hatchery 
We have re-scheduled our June trip so that we can now view all of the hatchery! Lots to see and do including the seeing and learning about the adult sturgeon in the outside tanks, seeing the boat and learning how the sturgeon are caught and handled, and learning about the only known spawning centre in the centre of Vanderhoof.

Sunday September 20th – 2 PM 
will be on a photographic mushroom hunt!
Please bring your cell phones
or digital cameras (although that is certainly not a requirement) and
we will try and find, talk about, and photograph a variety of mushrooms.
And for those that we can not identify, we will forward to some
experts for help! 

Special Amphibian Monitoring Program

Saturday September 12th at 7.30PM at UNBC
Note: Only Children 8 and older may attend as we will be on the roads

a reminder of this special program being offered by Mark Thompson as
part of the provincial Nature Kids amphibian monitoring project.

Sunday June 14th
12:45 PM
Vanderhoof Sturgeon Facility

There has been some exciting news this week at the Sturgeon Facilityas the first hatch happened. Although this has resulted in the main hatchery being closed to ensure hatch success, there is still lots to see and do including the seeing and learning about the adult sturgeon in the outside tanks, seeing the boat and learning how the sturgeon are caught and handled, and learning about the only known spawning centre in the centre of Vanderhoof.

May 24
Ancient Forest

We will then go for about an hour and a half walk along a 2.3 km loop trail. Because this area is in an inland rainforest, please come prepared for rain and cool temperatures – regardless of what the weather is in town.

This is an incredibly beautiful area with towering cedar, spruce and hemlock trees. We hope you will join us on this special outing.

May 3
Special Frog Program!
Mark Thompson, a local amphibian expert, has found time in his busy calendar to lead a special program for the NatureKids. Eight years ago, Mark led a wonderful program for the club.

We are very fortunate to be ending the school year with such a high calibre of volunteers – I hope you will be able to attend their programs and share in their knowledge and enthusiasm!

April 12th
2 PM
Pond Study at Shane Lake in Forests for the World
Terri McClymont
of REAPS will be leading our pond study adventure and will be bringing the supplies and materials that will allow us to see what is in the lake.
We will then sign in and hike the ten minutes as a group to the dock site.
A set of binoculars would also be nice to bring in case there are some birds on the lake.

Sunday March 1st, 2015
Exploration Place
The Scoop on Poop

This special activity is hands on (don’t worry, not with the real poop!) and is a not only a lot of fun, but everyone will also learn a lot about animal eating habits.Thanks to Exploration Place for providing us with a location for our March Explorer Day.

Sunday January 25th
12:30 to ~ 4:30 / 5 PM
Parkhill Centre at 556 North Nechako Rd
By popular request ~ Trumpeter Swans!
Nature Mentor Sandra Kinsey
, a local naturalist who is an excellent birder and tracker. Although one can never guarantee wildlife sightings, if the swans are there, it is a truly marvelous experience. And even if the swans are not there, Sandra will certainly be able to tell us about any tracks that mammals and other birds might have left.

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