Triplicate Staff

Event designedwith childrenmostly in mind

The Redwood Parks Association and Tolowa Dunes Stewards invite kids to put on their rubber boots and bring their parents on a wetlands safari adventure Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m.

Participants should meet at the Lake Earl Wildlife Area Information Center, 2591 Old Mill Road, Crescent City, and come prepared for some fun nature activities featuring Denise Seeger, education coordinator for Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

The group will take a short stroll to a nearby pond to explore its muddy edge and hunt for plants, frogs, birds, bugs and worms.

All ages are welcome, and participants are encouraged to bring their sense of wonder, a snack, drinking water and insect repellent. Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.

Great blue herons, Pacific tree frogs and marsh wrens are among the critters that might be seen on the tour.Seeger also hopes to see some red-winged blackbirds and red-legged frogs.

"I know we'll be able to catch some tree frogs," Seeger said."When they're croaking, that's the males telling the girls that they're available; its the males saying 'hey baby.'"

Identifying wildlife in the marsh emphasizes the wetlands' valuable role in the ecosystem.

"We're going to look at the function and importance of wetlands," Seeger said. "They're not just mucky places; they are really important for purifying our air and our water."

Participants will dig up freshwater snails and invertebrates like worms, and cool aquatic plants will be identified, Seeger said.

Seeger usually coordinates volunteers, conducts educational activities for children, and leads wetland walks for visitors and families at the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge, which is just south of Eureka.

For more information call Sue Calla, 707-465-6191.

Tolowa Coast summer programs are sponsored by theRedwood Parks Association and the Tolowa Dunes Stewards in collaboration with California State Parks and the California Department of Fish and Game.