Three Season Identity

The naturalist was informative and engaging with our grandchildren during the program we recently attended at West Virginia’s Cacapon State Park.

The on-again off-again rain did not stop our outing, but must have others because we were the only attendees.

Valerie Chaney, Full-Time Naturalist, at Cacapon State Park happily answered our questions as we made our way around the park. She gave each of us a pair of binoculars to see nature close up. She asked thoughtful questions to the children as well.

The nature lodge is well-made, cozy, and full of all sorts of local wildlife. Beautifully taxidermies line the walls in a grand display of the wonders of the natural world to see up close. Some of the animals and fish I have never seen. Thankfully the huge wolf is not local!

One interesting challenge Valerie gave us was identifying trees. She invited us to study not only the leaf structures, but the bark on the tree as well, and the general overall look of the tree. Such a challenge! She encouraged us to be able to identify them in those three ways throughout each season of the year.

She would watch and listen to the birds and ask if we knew them and their songs. Some we knew, she told us the others. The huge Pileated Woodpecker hole in the tree was fun to see too!

She gave us an interesting way of looking at the wonderful world of nature all around us. The park has many activities for families. Check them out! cacaponnaturecenter@gmail.com Also on FB.

Glad this huge wolf isn’t local!
Look at the size of the Pileated Woodpecker holes!
These two Shag Bark Hickory’s make for an easy tree to learn by its bark.
Grapevine is another easy starter for beginning naturalist.

Another trip to West Virginia’s Cacapon State Park will be made this summer. As an added note; their restaurant and gift shop are terrific!

2 thoughts on “Three Season Identity

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