Youth

“Little Helpers on the Prairie” kids event in Wichita

 

A frontier-themed OK Kids Day event will be held at the Great Plains Nature Center, 6232 E 29th Street North, Wichita, Saturday, May 9 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. All ages are invited to attend. Activities include fishing, archery, crafts, live animals, games, vintage photo station, fun-filled presentations, and more. Guests will be present from the Mid-America All-Indian Center and Old Cowtown Museum, and live music will be provided by the Tallgrass Express String Band.

There is no cost to attend; however a $2 lunch option will be available.

For more information, contact the Great Plains Nature Center at (316) 683-5499, or visit them on Facebook.

OK Kids is developed and operated by the Kansas Wildscape Foundation.

Have you noticed a duck nesting in a tree?

 

You’ve probably just seen a Wood Duck

 

By eNature

 

The idea of a duck in a tree may raise some eyebrows. The idea of a duck in the backyard may raise a few more.

 

Male Wood Duck

 

Yet there are mallards in backyards across the continent incubating eggs right now. There are also Wood Ducks in backyards, particularly in the East, sitting on eggs—but they’re 20 to 30 feet above the ground in tree cavities or duck houses.

 

A Nest in the Sky
Though Wood Ducks spend most of their lives on water like other ducks, when it comes to nesting, they take to the trees. And the hens are most at home nesting near where they themselves were hatched.

 

Female Wood Duck

 

In the spring, a hen Wood Duck leads her beautiful, multi-colored mate back to the place where she was hatched. Together, they explore tree cavities and large birdhouses for a suitable nesting site. The hen then lays an egg a day, for 10 to 12 days, before beginning her incubation of the eggs for another 28 days. Meanwhile, the drake remains attentive, accompanying her on feeding forays twice a day.

 

wood_duck_nest

 

That First Step Is A Doozy!
On the day when all the eggs hatch, the hen coaxes the fuzzy ducklings to jump out of the nest, sometimes from a great height—it’s a noisy, dramatic sight! Then she leads her family to water, where they spend the balance of the summer growing up.

 

Watching a pair of Wood Ducks attend a nest for a month is wonderful, but to witness the ducklings jumping from the nest, two and three at a time, is something else. So keep your eyes up as you watch for ducklings this spring!

 

Have you seen Wood Ducks in your neck of the woods? Or any other nesting bird pairs?

 

We always enjoy your stories!

Make your yard a wildlife oasis

 

Bring your yard or garden to life this year by planting the shrubs, flowers and trees that wildlife find irresistible.

 

Take eNature’s Garden Wildlife Quiz to learn what plants attract the most birds, butterflies and other critters.