The National Park System has programs for 4-5 year olds to earn Mini-Junior Park Ranger badges at their parks. Pierce decided he wanted to try to earn one for Assateague. We picked up our booklet and then did some beach explorations for ghost crab trails, plus smells and sights on the beach. Pierce drew a really cute pictures of the dolphins we saw swimming in the surf one morning. Then we went to attend a program called Assateague Detectives.
While we waited for the program at the Tom's Cove Visitor Center to begin, Pierce played with the horseshoe crabs.
Ranger Jenny showed us around the marshes, and taught us how to look for clues as Assateague Detectives. We found fiddler crabs and many different kinds of tracks.
This shell is from a blue crab. Ranger Jenny told us that they are much more blue when they are fresh, but when they are empty from the seagulls or other animals that eat them, they become lighter.
Can you spot the trail of raccoon tracks in this picture? We found lots of evidence of raccoon activity around the marshes.
Pierce earned his Junior Park Ranger badge for completing the program, and he also earned an Ocean Conservation badge for participating in Assateague Detectives. He took an oath to protect the island and its wildlife and land, and he takes his duties seriously! I present to you...Junior Park Ranger Pierce!