We had a wonderful day learning about beaver and wetland ecology. We made lists of everything we might find in a wetland (using Willamette Wetland as our reference), then we made a model of interactions from the list. In between these two activities, we did an activity to show all the adaptations a beaver has for living in its amazing and unique habitat! This lesson, called build a beaver, involves dressing up a volunteer like a beaver in two layers of jackets (to show beavers have two layers of fur), ear covers and goggles (beavers have special flaps and membranes over orifices for swimming underwater), flippers and a paddle (for swimming and steering)! There are a few other items too that demonstrate all the remarkable features of beavers that makes them wonderfully adapted to their habitat.
Next we will tour the local wetlands to compare the accuracy of our list with what is actually there in the wetland. Stay tuned!