6.07.2010

bio-diversity... balance... assiting the balance... aiding in creating bio-diversity

butterflies and bats and frogs...

here in Washington DC there is a mosquito problem

in DC it is hot... it is humid... and there is a serious mosquito problem
it seems to me that if we had a little more bio-diversity that we would not have such a grand mosquito problem
it seems that if we had a more solid balance in nature... we would have less of a mosquito problem
less... less of a problem

in the woods of Rock Creek Park I seldom see a frog... okay... I have never seen a live frog in the woods of Rock Creek Park
in my years of hiking with my dog and children I have not seen any frogs... ZERO!
only recently have I seen a puddle in a parking lot at Carter Baron that had tadpoles
this parking lot borders Rock Creek... so... I guess there are frogs in Rock Creek Park!

I would think that if each tributary creek that feeds into Rock Creek Park had greater bio-diversity than we would have less of a mosquito problem
frogs could be part of this more complex ecosystem

if there were fish and frogs then the tadpoles and fish could eat the mosquito larvae
I am guessing that adult frogs would eat the adult mosquitoes... but I am not positive
but what about bats?
I have heard that bats can eat one thousand mosquitoes a day!
if true... more bats would mean less mosquitoes

so... maybe we could assist the development of a bat colony
there are multiple bridges in Rock Creek Park
perhaps there could be some sort of minor addition to the structures that would lure the bats and give them a comfortable place to breed and live
HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE?

then what about those small wooden bat houses?
neighborhoods could work to house more bat families

my thought...
school science classes all over the country could work to educate the children and assist the balance of nature
the classes could teach basic respect for nature... which would include the notion of "catch and release"
there really are not enough turtles and snakes that people can just take these wild animals home and make them their pets

in fact...
the classes could do the inverse
the science classes could do a BREED AND RELEASE project
this would take some basic research
but it would be simple enough
in conjunction with the National Park Service or the local land managers programs could be run

the science labs could raise frogs from eggs... the kids could witness the magnificent metamorphosis of the tadpole
then once the tadpoles are adult frogs...
the frogs could be released into the wild

then with bat boxes... each school could have a project where the kids build and decorate bat boxes
then the school could host some of the bat boxes on their property in the trees and on the building
while some of the bat boxes could go home with the kids and hung in their yards
some of the boxes may become the home for bug eating bats
COOL! and beneficial to the native environment

I have heard that the world butterfly population is on the decline... massive decline
well... here is another fun science project
science classes all over the country could raise butterfly eggs into caterpillars
then... the class could watch the life cycle of the butterfly before their eyes
once the caterpillars create their cocoon and then morph into butterflies
well... the adult butterflies could be released into the wild

then each school could take this one step further
on the school grounds there could be the creation of an outdoor science project
milkweed plants could be put on the camps grounds
caterpillars could be raised on the grounds outside the lab
can you imagine the children excitement to see nature unfold right in front of them?!?!?

well... I would think that if the plants were raised and kept healthy
and there was "jump start" to the process by placing a few caterpillars in place
things would take hold and occur naturally each year

Schoolyard Habitats
www.nwf.org

Monarch Butterfly Migration
www.worldwildlife.org

Milkweed Seeds...
Monarch Butterflies Eat and Thrive on Milkweed
http://www.butterflyencounters.com/

monarch butterfly facts
www.trillian.com

Bat House Building Plans
www.eparks.org
www.nwf.org

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