Oakland Nature Preserve’s Zebra Long Wings environmental camp for first- and second-graders concluded June 20 after a week of exploration, excitement and learning. Exuberant campers learned about the decomposition process with a little “Decomposition Time Machine” magic; enthusiastically collected insects in sweep nets with entomologist Christy LeDuc; got up close and personal with snakes, turtles and opossums when Swamp Girl visited ONP; and even tried their hand at atlatl with archeologist Kevin Gidusko.
They also helped ONP eradicate more than 50 pounds of air potatoes, an invasive exotic plant that is not good for Florida habitats. Campers culminated the week by planting a native saw palmetto in ONP’s Honor Forest.
Keri Brown said this was a first-time camp experience for her daughter, Gracey. Each day after camp, Gracey and her mother walked the preserve with siblings and friends while the camper shared what she learned during the day.
Keri Brown told ONP Managing Director Barb Gugliotti that her children “would rather come to ONP than go to the playground.”
There is still room in the July 8-11 Giant Swallowtail Camp for middle school students and the July 15-17 Atala Butterfly Camp for pre-K through kindergarten adventurers.