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Audubon Youth Volunteers Take it to the Park

By: Gillian, Volunteer Manager, Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas
Audubon Nature Institute Youth Volunteer Retreat

It's hard to believe that we are only one week away from beginning our summer training with our youth volunteer programs Audubon wide. In preparation for training the AquaKids, Junior Entomologists, and Junior Keepers all came together for an overnight retreat at Fontainebleau State Park to meet each other and get a sneak peak of what their year as a volunteer would involve.

This year the three programs will be working together as a part of a grant we were awarded. As part of the Watershed Experience Project the students will be taught how to take water quality samples, record their data, and submit it to the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation to be used in their studies of the watershed that we live in. We will also take part in Louisiana State University's Coastal Roots program. Students will be responsible for growing and later planting trees that will be used to help restore our coast.

At this year's overnight retreat, students got a first hand look at the equipment and materials that they would be using to become "junior scientist". They practiced using GPS units to plot points, identified native plants and animals that were found, went on a night hike through the park (and through the swarms of termites...), and worked with quadrats. We all stayed very busy  and before we knew it it was time to go home. Despite being very tired from all of their hard work everyone was excited about the retreat and the programs they are a part of.

Audubon's youth volunteer programs begin the application process in November for the following year. If you are interested in applying to one of the three programs click here to read about what is offered. Check back for updates throughout the year to see what our youth volunteers are doing and how their research is coming along.

Mailing address: Audubon Nature Institute 6500 Magazine St. New Orleans, LA 70118
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