Friday, June 5, 2009

See a Skunk and a Barred Owl!

By Matthew and Chloe

Today was the third visit from Wildlife Experience and they started the presentation talking about teeth. We learned that you can tell if an animal is an herbivore (plant eater), a carnivore (meat eater), or an omnivore (eats both plants and animals) by looking at its teeth. There are three different types of teeth: incisors for gripping food, canine teeth for ripping meat, and molars for grinding food.

Below is the skull of a bobcat. It is a carnivore...just look at those canines!

We also learned about food chains. An animal that eats another animal gets energy. The animal that is at the top of a food chain gets the most energy. Some animals, like humans, are at the top of a food chain.

The first animal Ms. C. shared was a striped skunk. Many of us were worried because we thought it would spray us! Ms. C. told us that the scent gland had been removed during a surgery, but it did not hurt the skunk.

Skunks help humans because they love to eat spiders. They get rid of a lot of black widow spiders, which are poisonous.

Here is a picture of the skunk eating!

Here she is showing us her two stripes which give her the name striped skunk.

She also brought a barred owl!

This owl hooted when she came out! She has brown eyes instead of the yellow eyes that most owls have.

Have you ever heard that owls can turn their heads all around? Well, that is not true. They have a backbone, and if they turned their head all the way around, their neck would snap. Owls CAN turn their heads two-thirds of the way around. That helps owls see because their eyes are in the front of their heads.

The ears of barred owls are asymmetrical. That means one is on the top of the head and one is on the bottom of the head. Having ears in different locations helps the owl hear predators coming from above and below.

What did you learn that you did not know?

Think about the animal you researched. Where is it on a food chain?


  1. Dear Class,
    I love the picture where the owl has one wing up and one wing down. Also, I never knew that owls have one ear on the top of their head and one on the bottom of their head. I also never knew there were different kinds of skunks. I hope I see another one of those animals but not a skunk that sprays people.

  2. Dear class,

    I did not know that skunks eat black widow spiders.

    I do know that at certain times of the year I can find many black widow spiders around my house, but I don't know if I want a skunk around to eat them!

    Mrs. Harding


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