Thursday, 29 March 2012

Dissecting owl pellets!

We managed to get some owl pellets to dissect :) It's something that we've wanted to do for ages.
The kids helped gran set up the microscope.We not only had owl pellets but buzzard pellets too!
The kids and gran all got stuck in dissecting their pellets. They started with the owl pellets and used wooden skewers
but soon discarded the skewers :)
There was great excitement as they discovered tiny bones.
It was a bit smelly :) Not the owl pellets so much, but rather the buzzard pellets which are squishier
B and K found that they could put some of the bones together

Tiny skull!
Once they got the bones out, the children looked at them under the microscope, and adjusted the magnification to see the bones from different perspectives.
Below is a picture of the magnified bone. The children think that there must have still be some fluff from the chicks on it.

I think that this was part of a skull.
Lots of bones!!!
The buzzard pellets don't yield as many bones. Owl pellets are a lot more fun :)
The older guys worked on this for hours! Kiki got bored and played with a shield bug

While we were looking at chick bones, we decided to open the egg that didn't hatch. As you can see, B was worried about the smell :)

The chick filled the egg which meant that it died just before it was due to hatch :(
And here's the little guy who didn't quite make it. It's stomach was very swollen.

The kids asked to bury it rather than throw it away.

It was a very educational day!


AlwaysARedhead said...

Interesting, my kids did the same thing when in grade school, on we are on the other side of the ocean.

Jennifer said...

Wow, that is absolutely fascinating! I would love to have a go at something like this, although I think that I would want to wear gloves! What a brilliant way to interest the kids.

Thanks for sharing your link, I am loving your blog :)

Pip said...

we had a similar day last year when we found a birds nest with a skeleton in. bit gross but really interesting. Brendan is now asking where i can get owl pellets to disect... thanks for that lol