Conserve Wildlife Blog

Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

Third Grade Students Explore the Fascinating World of Peregrine Falcons

Wednesday, May 15th, 2024

by Rachel McGovern, Director of Education

Peregrine falcons are fascinating to learn about—they are swift, fierce, and intelligent birds. They are a joy to teach about, too! CWF is fortunate to have the opportunity to teach about these amazing birds of prey with students in Linden Public Schools, due to the generous support from Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery.

Each year, CWF visits every third-grade classroom in the Linden Public School District to deliver in-depth lessons about peregrine falcons. These lessons delve into the life history of peregrines, the reason for their decline, and how they are recovering today. Students explore how these falcons have adapted to modern-day landscapes by nesting on manmade structures rather than exclusively choosing their traditional cliffside sites. For city-dwelling students, it’s a revelation to discover that these endangered raptors thrive in environments like their own.

Central to this educational initiative is the Union County Falcon Cam– a live camera on a falcon nest located just a couple miles from Linden’s elementary schools. This camera has been in operation since 2016. It is run in cooperation with Union County and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. A live feed brings the viewer into a nest on the roof of the Union County Courthouse where Frida and Mango, the current pair at this nest, raise young each year. Students learn about the history of the camera and check in with the birds during their lesson. Teachers are also encouraged to check in with the falcons regularly for students to watch them raise their young.


Newark Fifth Graders Enjoy Annual Art Assembly with James Fiorentino

Monday, April 15th, 2024

by Rachel McGovern, Director of Education

Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey’s Species on the Edge Art & Essay Contest
encourages fifth-grade students to create artwork featuring endangered or threatened species in
New Jersey. Every year, fifth-grade students from Ridge Street Elementary School in Newark,
New Jersey eagerly participate in this contest as an integral part of the Soaring with STEAM
curriculum. This curriculum includes a series of specialized lessons taught by CWF educators
throughout the school year. To honor these students’ engagement, CWF organizes an annual
assembly featuring acclaimed artist James Fiorentino. Renowned for his diverse portfolio
spanning wildlife, sports icons, and landscapes, James embarked on his artistic journey at the age
of fifteen, with his work showcased in the Baseball Hall of Fame. During his visit to Ridge Street
Elementary, James shared his inspiring narrative and engaged with the young artists on the
subject of art.


Third Grade Students Host the Annual Bird Festival at Ridge Street Elementary School

Friday, March 29th, 2024

by Rachel McGovern, Director of Education

The spotlight was on the third graders at Ridge Street Elementary School during the Annual Bird Festival! Over the school year, the Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey guided third graders at Ridge Street Elementary School in Newark, New Jersey through an exploration of the state’s fascinating birds as part of the Soaring with STEAM curriculum. Students delved into the lives of ospreys, peregrine falcons, bald eagles, and other avian species while engaging in STEM-based projects. To culminate their learning journey, the third graders organized a festival aimed at educating parents, visitors, and younger students about the diverse birdlife in New Jersey.

Students gather to learn about peregrine falcons from third graders at Ridge Street Elementary School.
Photo Credit: Ashley Menniti

“Howls for Owls” Draws Wildlife Fans to Screamin’ Hill Brewery

Tuesday, November 21st, 2023

by Rachel McGovern, Director of Education

CWF’s “Howls for Owls” event at Screamin’ Hill Brewery in Cream Ridge, New Jersey was certainly among our most fun fall activities. Owl enthusiasts flocked to this 170-acre farm for an evening of family-friendly activities in celebration of barn owls. Children and adults alike enjoyed dissecting owl pellets, creating owl masks, making adorable pinecone owls, and participating in three rounds of owl-themed trivia. Many attendees even came dressed in owl costumes!

Activities were designed to be fun and to teach attendees about owl adaptations. Owl pellet dissection was one of the most popular things to do. Children and their parents often worked together to extract all the bones found within a pellet and figure out what the owl had consumed.

Kids also made special owl masks with tubes around the eyes to mimic the oblong shape of an owl’s eye. Owl eyes are fixed in place and shaped more like a doorknob or tube than a sphere. When the mask is on, kids discover that they can only see in front of them and must rotate their heads around to look from side to side- just like an owl. Because owls cannot move their eyes, they are adapted to turn their head about 270 degrees around!

“Howls for Owls” had activities for everyone! Crafts, trivia, owl pellet dissection, and other activities kept visitors busy.

A New Science Partnership Grows on Long Beach Island

Wednesday, October 11th, 2023

By Todd Pover, Senior Wildlife Biologist

CWF had a busy summer at the Long Beach Island Foundation of the Arts and Sciences (LBIF), having launched a new partnership this year to help strengthen their science programming through a grant from the Osprey Foundation. A number of offerings targeting both adults and kids, highlighted by three week-long science camps for ages 7-9 and 10-12, were developed and led by CWF’s staff. The LBIF facility, with its close proximity to both the ocean and bay, is an ideal location to feature New Jersey’s coastal species and their unique conservation challenges.

Campers watch as summer intern Victoria Rosikiewicz moves a clutch of terrapin eggs to a safe new nest.