The Nature’s Classroom Homeschool Program is approaching its one-year anniversary. To celebrate, we have decided to incorporate another component into the program: service. We will be providing you, as a Homeschool community, some unique opportunities to give back to wildlife. Some of these will be specific events, while others will be tied in with the regular educational events.
Our first Service opportunity is now accepting registrations. Here are the details:
The entrance pond at the Phoenix Zoo has many turtles. Most of these are invasive species that can cause problems for our native wildlife and habitats. So, we will be assisting with an annual event in which we remove some of these invasive turtles and give them to an organization to adopt them out. This will insure that these turtles do not overpopulate the pond and attempt to establish territories in neighboring areas.
On April 17, we will be trapping turtles in the front pond at the Phoenix Zoo and we need your help. This opportunity is available to anyone 6 years old and above. Participants will be placed in one of four positions based on age and need. These four positions are:
- Boats – places traps in the water from the boat. Navigates the boat with oars. Must be 18 years old or 16 with a parent in the boat as well.
- Identification – helps at the turtle processing station with identification, weighing, measuring, marking, and placing the turtles in appropriate bins. Ages 6 and older.
- Runner – bring turtles and materials back and forth between the boats and the processing station. May fill in other positions as needed. Ages 6 and older.
- Outreach – approaches the public as they are on the bridge. Talk about what we are doing and why. Ages 6 and older.
When you register, you will be asked to select the positions you would not feel comfortable assisting with and which would be your preferred choices. I cannot guarantee your preferences. We will fill the positions as space permits. We have LOTS of room for outreach so your best chance of participating is to at least be willing to assist with this part.
There are three different times available to participate in this event. You can sign up for one, two, or all three. The times for the trapping programs will be 8-10am, 12-2pm, and 4-6pm. Please be advised that the start times for these are certain. It is possible that the ending times could be extended if lots of turtles were being trapped.
All participants of the turtle trapping, are required to attend an orientation session at the Arizona Game and Fish Headquarters in north Phoenix on Wednesday, April 1, from 9am until 11am.
Although the main purpose of this event is to provide a service for the wildlife, we are still including a special reward for your efforts. All participants will be able to receive free admission to the Phoenix Zoo for that day. In addition, you will have the opportunity to get an up close and personal tour of the Galapagos tortoise exhibit at the zoo. This tour will only be available at set times (most likely around noon and around 2pm). Again, this tour will only be available to those who participate.
To register for this event, click here. Please be advised that registering does not guarantee participation. It will be based on a first-come, first-serve basis as positions are filled.