Outdoor Hour: nature Close To Home-Mammals: Beavers and Rats

Isn’t the Beaver so cute!!!! The first pic is from Wikipedia and the second picture is of Paddy the Beaver from the Burgess Animal Book for Children. The boys have really been enjoying hearing me read to them from this book. This week’s Outdoor Hour: Nature Close to Home Challenge: Mammals- Rat and Beavers and we loved the stories about Paddy the Beaver! We headed out this morning on our walk to a place we found evidence of beavers last year. My oldest first spotted a male and female Mallard at our lake, I hoped they wouldn’t fly or swim away but they did before I could get a picture of them. We then heard a Pileated and my oldest was the first one to spot it. I just love these woodpeckers. We got to see it fly and land three different times. As we continued to walk we heard a Crow and a dove and several bird songs we couldn’t identify.
We came across a small patch of these pretty little flowers, it’s like a wee sign that Spring is just around the corner.
We had made it over to what was my grandparents property and now belongs to my parents and my uncle. When we got to my Papa’s old barn a bird flew out. When it lighted on a tree we saw it was a Phoebe, they are such beautiful birds. So we immediately looked for a nest in the barn and we found it. The Phoebe’s make such pretty neat nest. I guess this another sign that Spring is close.
O.k. we made it to our destination. Behind my grandparents house down in the woods is a pretty good size creek. We have enjoyed many walks to this creek in the past.
We thought this looked like a good place for a Beaver to slide down to the water but we didn’t see what looked like Beaver tracks. We did see some deer tracks though.
We made it down to some rocks right at the water. The boys LOVE climbing on rocks. We didn’t see any animal tracks here but they thought it was fun down there looking for some.
We finally saw evidence of Beaver in the area but alas it was evidence that we had seen last year. So we did not see fresh evidence of beaver in the area but that’s o.k. we enjoyed the hunt anyway.
I just had to share this one because I think my oldest is precious!! My youngest wouldn’t stand still for another picture.
Here is a pic of the deer tracks we saw and look what else we found as evidence that there are deer in the area =)
When we got back from our walk my boys didn’t feel like sketching in their nature journals. They wanted to continue working on their little wood and painting projects that they had started earlier. I was a little disappointed hey didn’t want to but I didn’t want to push it most of the time they enjoy working on them. I sat and sketched something (see it above) for our family journal while they worked on their projects. They like it when they see me drawing so I thought it might motivate them.
I have to say I was so happy tonight when my youngest brought this picture he sketched. It is of the sun, a Beaver dam and a row of trees the Beavers had cut down. After it hangs up on display for a while it is going in the boys Nature Journal.
Here are some resources you might enjoy:
Learn about Beavers HERE and other animals in the rodent family.
All about the Beaver at Wikipedia
Information on the White-Tailed Deer
See and Hear a Pileated Woodpecker HERE
See and Hear an Eastern Phoebe HERE
See and Hear the Mallard Duck HERE
Don’t forget to check out The Handbook of Nature Blog for the Outdoor Hour: Nature Close To Home Challenges and lots of information on Mammals and many other wonders out in God’s Amazing Creation! Take the time to check out her Outdoor Hour: Nature Close to Home E-Book, it’s a fantastic nature resource!!!
Oh, know I just realized we got so hung up on Beavers we didn’t take time to learn about rats. Oh, well maybe tomorrow. =)

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