Saturday, March 01, 2008

March Saturday

Yesterday morning was -29 degrees, but today was comfortably in the 20s (above), so after hanging around a bit in the morning, we went over to the Wild Center in Tupper Lake...


Before we went, I fed the geckos in Ben's room 250 crickets (I take the farm's word for it, rather than count them, but it looked like 250)...the white powder is a vitamin mix that we shake and bake on the crickets before feeding them to the geckos...


The geckos ("Big Guy" and 4 female geckos named "Allie") love hunting the crickets, and burn through them incredibly quickly...I've had these guys for 7-8 years, and they thrive on neglect...after Katrina destroyed my cricket connection, they happily waited 2 months between meals...


We got to the Wild Center just in time to catch a cool presentation on owls...


At the end of the presentation, they had 2 owls (that live at the museum, in rehab) to show people...the one in the picture above is a saw-whet owl...


The one pictured above is a screech owl...


The audio portion of the owl presentation didn't work, and the 2 owls above refused to make any noise while we were there, but the Wild Center has a cool computer system that allows you to play/compare tons of animal sounds, including the 2 species that we met up above...

Ben found a cool owl puppet in one of the drawers in a hands-on room, and played with it for a while...it had a head that swiveled 270 degrees in each direction, just like real owls...

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We found this cool turtle swimming in the pond habitat display...Ben loved watching him swim back and forth...I kept thinking about that dysfunctional polar bear in the NY Central Park Zoo, but find myself not feeling as bad for a turtle as for the bear...


The Wild Center has a bunch of centers set up all around the museum that have really cool handheld microscope-cameras...Ben loves playing with them, sometimes in non-traditional ways...in the picture above, you can see an intense close-up of a part of his eye...

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The otters were in rare form today, playing and biting with each other nonstop...


After a nice lunch in the cafeteria, we borrowed 2 pairs of the Museum's snowshoes, and went out exploring the snowy world beyond the warmth inside the Wild Center...

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Ben did a great job, once he got used to keeping his feet a little bit apart...he got going fast enough to kick snow all the way up his back at times...


We were the first people out on the trails since the new snow had fallen, so some spots were deeper than others, but all of it was fun...some of the time I broke trail, some of the time it was Ben...

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At the end of the snowshoe adventure, on our way back to the Wild Center, Ben said that he wanted to take a break and sit on one of the benches...he thought that the above was a hilariously funny joke...

We had a great time at the museum, as always, and stopped at Shaheen's Market on the way home, for a quick shop, including the best steaks in the North Country...

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