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Goats, Pigs and Sturgeon – Oh My!
Midwest Region, May 20, 2008
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Columbia National Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office (NFWCO) participated in Down on the Farm in Columbia, Mo. for the first time this year, an event that gives children the opportunity to get up-close and personal with a variety of farm animals.  Down on the Farm is and event sponsored by Parents and Teachers that aims to connect young children (ages 1-5) and their families with nature and farm life.   In addition to seeing cows, pigs, goats and chickens, this year children also saw native Missouri River fish and turtles displayed by Columbia NFWCO staff.  Patty Herman and Colby Wrasse displayed shovelnose sturgeon, blue catfish, channel catfish, and two species of turtle for all participants to view.  Most children and parents were amazed by the sturgeon’s dinosaur-like appearance, but the turtles were the biggest attraction.  Some children were at first hesitant to touch the turtles or fish, but once they overcame their initial fears they were enchanted by the bizarre creatures.  Many children came back time and time again to see their slimy new friends.  The event was a great opportunity for us to educate the community about some of the lesser known members of the animal world.

 

Like so many others, Linda Romine, organizer of Down on the Farm, believes that children have become disconnected from the natural world.  This event is yet another small step towards reconnecting children with nature, and we were glad to take part. Cooperative participation in local events also helps promote the Service’s commitment to maintaining America’s natural resources and supports the “Public Use Goal” of the “Fisheries Program Vision for the Future.”

 

Contact Info: Larry Dean, 612-713-5312, Larry_Dean@fws.gov



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