Earlier in the month, the first seventh-grade Natural Resources Field Day occurred. All four of the county school corporations participated. Nearly 500 youth came to the Putnam County Fairgrounds to travel around to sixteen locations. Presenters at these locations discussed wildlife, forestry, soil science, stream science, water critters, fire science, the Greencastle Water Treatment plant, careers, wastewater treatment, ground water, bees, entomology and wetlands.
Youth were able to get into Big Walnut Creek and discover the many aquatic insects that reside within the stream. Not only were the insects discovered, they could be identified to apply decision making related to water quality.
A significant number of insects considered to be intolerant of polluted water were found suggesting superb water quality in Big Walnut Creek. Much of the watershed (land area with common drainage point) upstream from the Putnam County Fairgrounds is agricultural land.
Finding the pollution intolerant aquatic insects suggests that agriculture is not having a negative impact on the stream or smaller streams that feed into Big Walnut.
Another program entitled Eco-Bot from the National 4-H Science Day is available as a kit from the Purdue Extension Putnam County office. The first use of the program in Putnam County occurred with the FEET (Friendly Environmental Engineers of Tomorrow) Club at Central Elementary during an after-school event.
Students in club utilized a toothbrush head, cell phone vibrator motor, and a small battery to construct a robot.
After the student teams constructed robots, the task was to see which team could move the rice on their paper to contain what was represented as an environmental spill.
The students had considerable fun constructing the robots and designing a plan to contain their spill. Creativity was incredibly exhibited by all of the student teams.
Any 4-H Leader or other educators and teachers may contact the Extension Office to reserve and check out the Eco-Bot kit or the Wired for Wind kit from the 2011 National 4-H Science Day.
Visit our homepage at www.extension.pur-due.edu/putnam or you can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 653-8411 for more information regarding this week's column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events.
It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee.
October 30 - 4-H Volunteer Meeting, Putnam Co. Museum, 6 p.m.
November 2 & 3 - Extension Homemakers Past Presidents' Arts and Crafts Show at Fairgrounds
November 4 - 4-H Member Achievement and Volunteer Recognition Program, Fairgrounds, 2 p.m.
November 5 - Ext. Homemakers County Council meeting 7 p.m. at Extension Office
November 6 - Master Gardener Association Meeting DePauw Julian Center room 157, 7 p.m.
November 9 - Deadline to register for Cooking 101
November 12 - Extension Office Closed, Veteran's Day
November 13 - Putnam County Health Coalition 10 am at Extension Office
November 14 - Cooking 101 -- Appetizers 10 a.m. at Area 30 Career Center
December 13 - Last chance PARP Clay County 12:30 p.m.