Bird Migration Hopscotch
Did you know that every year the Great Salt Lake hosts millions of pelicans, sand pipers, and other birds as they migrate? But why are wetlands so important? We’ll explore this concept through a fun game of hopscotch.
• A Sidewalk
• Excited Kids!
1. Create a basic hopscotch course. Each square in the course represents a pond, lake, or other wetland.
2. Tell kids they must pretend they are birds on a long migration and must hop from one end of the course to the other, landing in each wetland square.
3. After the first round, inform kids that a developer has filled in one of the wetlands to build condos! Place a big ‘X’ in one of the squares. Kids may no longer land in that square. Have them try the course again.
4. Continue adding ‘X’s after each round until it becomes very difficult to complete the course. What happens when we destroy too many of our wetlands?
• What happened when only a couple of squares were marked off? Were you still able to get through? What does that tell you about the impact of a little development vs. a lot of it?
• Gunnison Island in the Great Salt Lake is famous for its pelicans, home to one of the largest rookeries for American White Pelicans in the world. You can learn more about these unique birds and check out cam footage at Westminster’s PELIcam project!
• Bird migration can look very different for different birds. The blue grouse travels a mere 1000 ft. down a hillside, while the arctic tern makes a round flight trip between the Arctic and Antarctica every single year. Check online to see what other kinds of crazy migrations there are!