Did you know that trees are the longest living organism on Earth and that they never die of old age! Trees provide food and habitat for animals, absorb carbon dioxide and produce oxygen for us to breathe. Some of the animals we saw that live in trees include squirrels, chipmunks and wood peckers. This weeks theme was ‘Friendly Forests’ and how appropriate – considering all the benefits we receive from trees.
Campers enjoyed learning how fungus and trees are interconnected. We did a fun activity where campers took on different roles: mama tree, baby tree, mushroom, and mushroom picker. The kids would act out the process of the mama tree helping the baby tree grow by using the mushroom roots to send along tasty sap. After practicing these skits the campers were keen to point out any and all mushrooms growing along our forest walks. Campers learnt that mushrooms are only the fruiting body of the fungus, similar to how apples are the only fruiting body of the whole apple tree.
On our nature walks we stopped to tell stories about the Douglas Fir and Hemlock tree. The stories are a fun way for the campers to learn how to identify different types of trees! Their favourite is identifying the Douglas Fir by its cone. They recognize this one in particular from the ‘mouse tails and back legs’ sticking out (when the Douglas Fir helped save the mice from the forest fire).
The pirate ship was our favourite place to hang out this week and it was made from material from our branchy friends. We sailed the green sea and pretended to be pirates. It was fun making pretend teepee ‘fires’ in the cabin for our cook to make meals on, finding stolen treasure and walking the plank. The pirate ship is also a prime bug hunting area as insects are a fast find in fallen trees. It was super fun adding new parts to the pirate ship, this week we made additions to the ceiling and made our very own nature camp flag!
THANKS TO ALL CAMPERS THAT MADE WHISTLER NATURE CAMP 2017 SO AWESOME!
We would like to give special thanks to all our sponsors and funders that made running Whistler Nature Camp possible!
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