Sunday, September 26, 2010

Outdoor Hour: Owls


Our subject for nature study this week was owls.  We did so much for this study that it turned into The Outdoor Week lol!  I ordered two owl pellet kits from Homeschool Science Supply and was very pleased with how quickly they arrived.  I thought the boys would be more excited about the whole dissection process, but they were less than pleased (and slightly grossed out) with the concept.  Dh just thought my buying owl puke off the internet was hilarious and wanted to know if I thought he could sell anything he found in the cat’s litter boxes.  Well, if people were buying tar balls from our beach after the oil spill then there could possibly be a market for litter leavings.  ;)  Moving on…

IMG_0347 Ds2 helped out his littlest brother.

Here they are measuring the pellet.

IMG_0346 See the pure joy on their faces?

IMG_0349 It takes a while to pick apart the pellet, but eventually they found bones.  The kit included a bone sorting chart and the boys were excited to find what they think was part of a skull or jawbone in one of the pellets.


IMG_0356 Here are some of the other bones they uncovered.

We read some from The Handbook of Nature Study and Usborne Book of Nature about owls and listened to some calls on the internet.  We were surprised that not every owl call is a “hoo”…some even sounded like dogs barking.  We read Sam and the Firefly which both the boys thought was quite fun.


The best part of this study was a visit to a local wildlife sanctuary. 

IMG_2029 This lovely place is nestled on the outskirts of downtown Pensacola and provides care for injured local wildlife.  Their motto is “Receive Rehabilitate Release.”

IMG_1951 You have to look closely as it was hard to get a good shot of the caged guys.  We loved getting a real look at the owls we had been studying all week.

IMG_1950 Their faces were so expressive!  We saw owls of all varieties including Great Horned and Barn.

IMG_1966 The sanctuary was very educational with plaques and posters everywhere giving details of all the wildlife.  Ha ha, you can see my reflection in this pic.

IMG_1975 There was even a place to compare wing spans.  We had a great time with our nature study this week and definitely are more aware of the owls in our area.


  1. Very Cool Julie! Ya, my husband had dollar signs in his eyes when he heard that all the moms would order "Owl skat", even though I kept reminding them it wasn't skat, they thought it sounded funnier. :) We read to soak ours in warm water for a bit before dissecting, ours dissolved in the water, and they just rummaged out the bones. Wonder if that it why we had more bones than most of the other studies? Thanks for letting me know about your study! I have about 95 blogs in my reader waiting for a moment to browse. :)

  2. Excellent study of owls and I love that you were able to take a field trip to see some owls up close....they are beautiful birds.

    I appreciate the effort with the owl pellets, we had a bit of eeewww around here too when the time came to dissect. :)

    Thanks for sharing your study.


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