Posts Tagged With: children

We Spots a Spotted Owl

We Spots a Spotted Owl

When people think of Africa, people think of all the big animals, but rarely do they think of owls! Well, Africa is home to many species of owls. We went looking for the Spotted Eagle and we found one! Come learn more about them with us!

spotted eagle owl

Spotted Eagle-Owl Fun Facts:

  • Spotted eagle-owls have a 3 foot wing span!
  • They have large ear tufts and bright yellow eyes.
  • Like many owls they are nocturnal.
  • These carnivores eat mammals, birds and amphibians. They are also known to eat carrion.
  • Spotted eagle-owls are known to bond for life.
  • They are listed as Least Concern by the IUCN.

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Seeing an owl in the wild is always a treat! These owls have a fun musical call. We could listen to them all night.

Categories: adventure, Animals, birds, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Flamingo!

Flamingo!

We are off to meet a bird who calls this country home- the greater flamingo! These iconic birds are one of our favorites too! Let’s learn more about them together.

Greater Flamingo

Greater Flamingo Fun Facts: 

  • These large birds can grow up to 59 inches tall and weigh up to almost 9 pounds. They are the largest member of the flamingo family.
  • Males are larger than females.
  • Greater flamingos are a soft whitish pink. They do have bright pink and black feathers on the back of their bodies.
  • Young flamingos are grey and turn pink after a few years. That pink coloration is caused by the food they eat.
  • During breeding season they turn brighter pink!
  • These carnivores eat small crustaceans, insects and fish.
  • They are highly social.

Greater Flamingo, Phoenicopterus roseus at Marievale Nature Rese

Flamigos always make us smile. Did you know that knobby joint they bend is actually their ankle? Their knees are closer to their bodies! Neat!

Categories: adventure, Animals, birds, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Armored Lizard

Armored Lizard

We decided we haven’t met enough lizards on our trip so far and headed out to meet one with some most interesting scales. This reptile was a definite look don’t touch kind of creature. Get ready to learn more about them.

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Giant Girdled Lizard Fun Facts: 

  • They are also known as the sungazer lizard.
  • Giant girdled lizards grow to about 7 inches long.
  • Though they live in rocky areas, they do dig their own burrows for shelter.
  • They are insectivores.
  • They live in groups.
  • They secret scents to communicate with other sungazers.
  • Giant girdled lizards are listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN.

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We enjoyed spotting this little spiked lizard. It would be a smart predator to stay away from those scales.

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, lizards, nature, reptiles, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Hello Shrew

Hello Shrew

We are off to the southern part of the country for a day trip to locate one small mammal. They are named after elephants, but we can assure you they are not elephants. Grab your gear and let’s head off on today’s adventure to meet the cape elephant shrew.

cape elephant shrew

Cape Elephant Shrew Fun Facts:

  • Shrews are distantly related to moles. They are not rodents.
  • They are also called the Cape Elephant Sengi.
  • The cape elephant shrew weighs around 50 grams.
  • These insectivores eats insects of all kinds.
  • They get their names from their long noses like look like and elephant’s trunk.
  • Their scientific name includes the word- Elephantulus.
  • They prefer dry, rocky and arid habitats.
  • They are listed as LEAST CONCERN by the IUCN.

 

What a joy it was to spot this tiny little animal. It’s not easy and it took some patience waiting in an area where they are known to hunt for insects. Sometime we forget that habitats all around the world have some amazing little animals. These forgotten creatures are important too.

Categories: adventure, africa, Animals, Children, conservation, education, elephants, Environment, mammals, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Off to South Africa

Off to South Africa

Did you guess where are our next adventure will be? If you guessed South Africa- you are correct! Yay! We are off to meet some of the iconic animals of this beautiful country, but first let’s learn more about South Africa today!

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South Africa Fun Facts: 

  • Table Mountain in Cape Town in one of the oldest mountains in the world.
  • The waters off the coast of South Africa can be quiet dangerous. It is believed that 2,000 shipwreck are in the waters there.
  • South Africa is the 2nd largest producer of fruits in the nation.
  • The largest land mammal, the elephant calls South Africa home, as does the smallest mammal in the world- the least dwarf shrew.
  • Around 900 species of birds call South Africa home.
  • South Africa is home to Kruger National Park. The park is a huge! It is nearly 500,000 acres.
  • Kruger is home to cheetah, elephants, springbok, rhinos, zebra, giraffe and many other species.
  • Kruger was established in 1898.

 

Kruger is where we will be setting up our base camp for most of this trip! We are so excited to see of the animals of this amazing spot- especially Ellie’s relatives.

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, elephants, endangered species, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Macaques!

Macaques!

Hello! Today we are meeting one of the most popular primates in Asia- the Rhesus Macaque! They are super cool and we hope you think so too!

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Rhesus Macaques Fun Facts: 

  • Rhesus macaques live in large troupes, of around 40 individuals.
  • Their groups of matriarchal, led by females.
  • Males leave their troup when they are mature.
  • These omnivores eat insects, roots, leaves and pine needles.
  • They can become a nuisance when they live near humans. They are known to steal food.
  • Rhesus macaques are highly intelligent.
  • They are excellent climbers and swimmers.
  • They are listed as Least Concern by the IUCN.

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We had such fun watching a troup of macaques in the afternoon. They spend it finding food and grooming each other and lounging. Their little faces are all so different and each individual has their own personality.

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, mammals, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Flying Rodent!

Flying Rodent!

We headed out to meet to a flying rodent today.  We stayed up during the evening to spot this creature.

Red Giant Flying Squirrel

 

Red Giant Flying Squirrel Fun Facts: 

  • These nocturnal rodents are can grow up to 17 inches long.
  • They have flaps of skin that help them glide (not fly) in the trees.
  • Red giant flying squirrels have large eyes to help them see at night.
  • These herbivores eats leaves, cones, fruits and nuts.
  • They migrate areas to find food.
  • Females have liters twice a year.
  • They are listed as Least Concern by IUCN.

It is so cool to see these squirrels gliding in the trees! And who knew squirrels could get so big!

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Dragon in the Water

A Dragon in the Water

We are off to meet a little reptile who is called a dragon! They don’t look like dragons, but they are neat!

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Chinese Water Dragon Fun Facts: 

  • Chinese water dragons grow to around 3 ft long. Their tail is about 2/3 of their body length.
  • Those tails can aide in balance, swimming and protecting themselves from predators.
  • Males are slightly larger and have larger crests on their heads.
  • The crests under their throats can be all kinds of colors, including purple, peach and blue.
  • These arboreal lizards are diurnal.
  • They are omnivores that eat insects, small fish and some vegetation.

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We love spotting small animals as much as we love seeing the big, famous ones. For habitats and ecosystems to be healthy, all the animals that live there must have healthy populations.

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, nature, reptiles, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Watch Out for Flying Frogs

Watch Out for Flying Frogs

We headed off to meet an adorable amphibian today! They may be known to fly. We wonder if they wear capes? Hehehe! Let’s find out.

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Chinese Flying Frog Fun Facts: 

  • These little 4 inch frogs call tropical and subtropical forests their homes.
  • They are arboreal.
  • They are also called Chinese Gliding Frogs.
  • They have webbing between their toes. That webbing allows them to glide from tree branch to tree branch.
  • They can glide up to 50 feet.
  • Females create foam nests for their eggs and attach to those on leaves above water.
  • They are listed as Least Concern by the IUCN.

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We enjoyed spotting this little frog with the funny little feet! It makes us want to go hang gliding!

Categories: adventure, amphibians, Animals, Children, conservation, education, Environment, frogs, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

One Neat Monkey

One Neat Monkey

Our first day here in China we head to the mountainous forests in the Southwest of the country to meet a really neat monkey! We’re not sure we’d call them cute, but they are awesome! Come meet the Golden snub-nosed monkey with us!

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Golden Snub-nosed Monkey Fun Facts: 

  • These monkeys live where it can snow. They tolerate colder temperatures than most non-human primates.
  • Males are larger than females (about 1/2 the size of males). They have longer hair on their backs.
  • The have flattened pushed back noses that are open nostrils.
  • They live in groups of 20-30 individuals during the cold winter. The smaller groups come together in the summer and you may fine groups of 200 individuals.
  • These herbivores eat pine needles, lichen, bamboo shoots and fruit.
  • They are highly vocal.
  • Golden snub-nosed monkeys are listed as Endangered by the IUCN.

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We enjoyed viewing these monkeys in the trees. It is amazing that these primates can tolerate such cold. Most primates live in tropical climates. Do you think they have sweaters stashed somewhere?

Categories: adventure, Animals, Children, conservation, education, endangered species, Environment, mammals, nature, science, Today's Post, wildlife | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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