Forest Unit: Fabulous Science Activity!

As I mentioned yesterday, we did a lot of reading about owls to lead into the awesome science study on owls!  We talked about the forest food chain (who eats whom) and then I asked them what owls ate. Owls eat mice, voles, snakes and other small animals. They swallow their prey whole and about eight hours later spit out the parts they can’t digest in a pellet of fur and bones. We talked and read about this in some detail… and then I brought out owl pellets for them to dissect!  The kids raved and raved about this.  This was one of the highlights of our year so far!

So here are the pics… I was so excited that I took over 40 pictures!

The owl pellet as it was received. By the way, I know I paid a about two dollars per pellet but can’t seem to find where I purchased it! Sorry.
Everyone dug right in — ED was just as engaged and excited as DD and LD!
We were all so excited as various bits of the skeleton emerged. It tied in so perfectly with our earlier studies of (human) bones.  I’ve had these pellets since the beginning of the school year and it’s been so hard to wait!! But, I’m so glad I did because they got so much more out of it having done the other studies first.
We looked through our mammal book and concluded these were mouse skulls.
The kids were so engaged and it went on so long, they asked me to start reading more about owls.
If you get the chance, I highly recommend doing this. What awesome, hands-on science!

At first I couldn’t remember where I got these. Just wanted to add, I’m pretty sure I got my pellets from nature-watch.com. I got the large ones for $2.95. Here’s the link for the large owl pellets.

They have a free bone sorting chart here.

They state at their site: “Owl pellets have been carefully sterilized to ensure safety.”

You might also be interested in these related posts:

ForestAnimalSortCards

DSC04274Nocturnal-DiurnalAnimals

We have some animal track cards and matching pages in our Animal Unit: Find out more about it at this post Animal Unit: Types of Animals (30+ Pages)

Animal-Track-ActivitiesSee you again soon here or Homeschool Den Facebook page. Don’t forget to Subscribe to our Homeschool Den Newsletter! ~Liesl

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12 Responses

  1. Tiger's Mum says:

    Thanks for sharing this! We'll be doing a similar study with owl pellets soon so this post is very timely!

  2. Tiger's Mum says:

    Thanks for sharing this! We'll be doing a similar study with owl pellets soon so this post is very timely!

  3. Looks wonderful!! XOXO

  4. Looks wonderful!! XOXO

  5. Christie says:

    You can buy these from Amazon ($7.95 for a set of 5)

  6. Christie says:

    You can buy these from Amazon ($7.95 for a set of 5)

  7. Thanks Christie. Hopefully that helps others who want to do this. It's a fabulous activity!

  8. Thanks Christie. Hopefully that helps others who want to do this. It's a fabulous activity!

  9. Just wanted to add, I'm pretty sure I got my pellets from nature-watch.com. I got the large ones for $2.95. Here's the website: http://www.nature-watch.com/barn-owl-pellets-p-263.html?cPath=142_146They have a free bone sorting chart here: http://www.nature-watch.com/images/Owl%20Pellet%20Bone%20Sorting%20Chart.pdfThey state at their site: "Owl pellets have been carefully sterilized to ensure safety."

  10. Just wanted to add, I'm pretty sure I got my pellets from nature-watch.com. I got the large ones for $2.95. Here's the website: http://www.nature-watch.com/barn-owl-pellets-p-263.html?cPath=142_146They have a free bone sorting chart here: http://www.nature-watch.com/images/Owl%20Pellet%20Bone%20Sorting%20Chart.pdfThey state at their site: "Owl pellets have been carefully sterilized to ensure safety."

  11. lynchmob says:

    The boys LOVE the owl pellets you sent them for Christmas. We started digging into one, but decided to wait until our Christmas travels were over to totally dissect it. The weekend slipped by without us doing it, it will definitely be on the agenda for this week! Love the wrinkled heart idea, too. I'll have to do that!

  12. lynchmob says:

    The boys LOVE the owl pellets you sent them for Christmas. We started digging into one, but decided to wait until our Christmas travels were over to totally dissect it. The weekend slipped by without us doing it, it will definitely be on the agenda for this week! Love the wrinkled heart idea, too. I'll have to do that!

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