Creekside students learn about 'Magic ponds - just add water and instant life!'
Getting hands-on while learning about some local aquatic life, students at Creekside Intermediate School got a first-hand look into life of Spring vernal pools.
Creekside sixth-graders recently participated in a hands-on portable ponds activity led by Randy Baker from Naturalist Endeavors. The presentation was in Creekside teacher Lisa Glover’s classes.
“Students learned about the importance of Spring vernal pools that form when the snow melts and the first rains arrive,” Glover said.
Baker called these "Magic ponds - just add water and instant life!"
Funds for this presentation came from a DTE Think Energy grant.
According to Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE), vernal pools are small, shallow pools of water scattered throughout the landscape. EGLE says “these small wetlands are called vernal pools because they are typically filled with water in the spring (“vernal” means spring) but they usually dry up and “disappear” during the summer.”
In that short time, EGLE says vernal pools provide a critical habitat for certain animal species that rely on these fishless habitats for their survival and/or reproduction.
During the presentation, Glover said Creekside students observed the macroinvertebrates: mosquito and dragonfly larvae, fairy shrimp, newts, crayfish, leeches, tadpoles, and salamander eggs.
“Students learned that the conservation of vernal pools is essential to our songbird and frog populations,” Glover said. “Without these pools, many tadpoles cannot survive and migrating birds do not have enough food to raise their young. Our vernal pools are in jeopardy due to climate change and habitat loss. Students were challenged to be conservationists and good stewards of this vital natural resource.”