TCAH Houston Arboretum Field Trip

My four TCAH students and I went to a (delayed due to weather) field trip to Houston Arboretum Nature Park today. Two of them grumbled all the way there about not wanting to go, one had just gotten his braces taken off early morning (so was very happy), and the other one is always glad to be outdoors.

The school crowd split into three groups: elementary, middle, and high school. I went with the elementary school kids and parents because my kids are all old enough now to not want to have anything to do with Mom. It's okay. I prefer the younger kids anyway.

Two families (a mom, a dad, and four girls) in my group were great at finding stuff to look at, real nature addicts!. I showed them all how to use iNaturalist, so they were keen to see if they could stump the naturalist. At the end of our walk, they were logging all the species for me.

At one point off the trail, a ribbon snake was in chase of a leopard frog, who were both headed right for us. My job was to calmly get everyone to stop walking long enough to not get entangled in what was an unfolding food web. The parents were the only ones who couldn't stand still ('Eeek! Snake!), and so the snake went one way after meeting our feet, the frog another. Everyone was content when it was all over ... except the snake who didn't get to eat. Sadly, no photos.

Those kids ... they found so much great stuff for me! Not only were they the ultimate butterfly and mushroom hunters, but when they pointed and asked me 'what bird is that?' I lifted the 600mm to shoot the Pileated woodpecker only to find someone else entirely: Red-headed juveniles. WHOOP! Sighting of the day for sure.

I logged the sighting on eBird when I got home as I wasn't there to count birds. https://ebird.org/checklist/S60824091

The Gulf fritillaries were everywhere, mating and laying eggs. We brought one 4th instar caterpillar to add to Squishy's habitat (what we call our 1st instar) so that we can have a chrysalis for my 4th grade students.

Posted by dirtnkids dirtnkids, October 21, 2019 21:24

Observations

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Mexican Primrose-Willow Ludwigia octovalvis

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dirtnkids

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October 21, 2019 12:34 PM HST

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Ailanthus Webworm Moth Atteva aurea

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October 21, 2019 12:37 PM HST

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Beggar-Ticks Bidens pilosa

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October 21, 2019 12:38 PM HST

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American Trumpet Vine Campsis radicans

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October 21, 2019 01:01 PM HST

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American Sweetgum Liquidambar styraciflua

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October 21, 2019 01:10 PM HST

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Red-headed Woodpecker Melanerpes erythrocephalus

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October 21, 2019 01:17 PM HST

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Coastal Germander Teucrium cubense

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October 21, 2019 01:22 PM HST

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American Beautyberry Callicarpa americana

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October 21, 2019 01:24 PM HST

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White Snakeroot Ageratina altissima

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October 21, 2019 01:25 PM HST

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Brittlegills Genus Russula

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October 21, 2019 01:29 PM HST

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October 21, 2019 01:30 PM HST

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Honey Mushrooms Genus Armillaria

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October 21, 2019 01:34 PM HST

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Gulf Fritillary Agraulis vanillae

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October 21, 2019 02:09 PM HST

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Differential Grasshopper Melanoplus differentialis

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October 21, 2019 01:20 PM HST

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Cloudless Sulphur Phoebis sennae

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October 21, 2019 03:41 PM HST

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Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

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dirtnkids

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October 21, 2019 03:43 PM HST

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