Studying Snakes in Second Grade

 Red snakeThe second grade class spent Thursday morning at the Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary doing the work of herpatologists, scientists who study snakes. Guided by rangers from the reserve, students studied and looked for snakes in marsh and field habitats, and had the opportunity to hold and touch several different kinds of snakes. Favorite snakes included the milk snake and the hognose snake, which fools its predators by playing dead and emitting a foul smell.

“Snakes are important because they protect our food,” explained budding herpatologist Javier R. His colleagues added that they eat mice and rats, which threaten grain crops, the source of our breakfast cereal.

This year’s second grade class is generally less afraid of snakes than their predecessors, having watched last year’s class become experts and enthusiasts of the species. As the year progresses, they will look forward to many similar projects, as well as some new surprises