October 03, 2006

Last Week Was for the Birds!

Or for studying birds, that is. We focused on birds as our theme during our school week and enjoyed re-reading many favorite Sonlight stories about birds as well as perusing a number of library books that told us more details about this part of God's creation. To cap off our week we visited a local bird sanctuary. Ted had Friday off work, so he was able to accompany us on this field trip. (We really don't plan to take a field trip EVERY week we do school...it's just worked out that so far, we have!)

Tobin's experience at the bird sanctuary began rather dramatically as he promptly stuck his finger in a parrot's cage only to receive a nasty nip. He spent the majority of the morning whining and asking to leave, not surprising after that traumatic introduction. It didn't help that the birds were extremely LOUD and startled him on more than one occasion! Arden and Charis, on the other hand, didn't seem to mind the noises at all, and having learned the cage lesson from Tobin, managed to refrain from sticking their fingers in the cages (mostly). At least no one else got bitten.

I was pleasantly surprised at how many different kinds of birds there were to see. I've driven and jogged past the outside of the sanctuary before and had seen ostriches and emus, but I didn't know they had such a huge variety. I'm no bird expert, by any means, but I remember seeing hens, roosters, turkeys, parakeets, cockatoos (probably at least a dozen or more varieties here!), peacocks, ducks, geese, some type of buzzard, love birds, doves, and of course the ostriches and emus. I'm sure there were others, but we didn't take notes.

We were there during feeding time for the ducks and geese and were amused to watch them frantically flock to the piles of bread and fruit that were unceremoniously dumped on the shore of the pond. Even Tobin cheered up a bit at this point as he watched. Arden and Charis were delighted by watching the ostriches bend to eat and bob their necks around as they watched us back.

There was a petting zoo as well, so we also saw pigs, donkeys, miniature horses, goats, llamas, and tortoises.

All in all, it was a good experience for the $11 we paid to get in and was a great way to cap off our week's look at birds.

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