At Cape May County Technical High School, students are learning by helping save ospreys.
Working in an outdoor classroom of marsh and inland waterways, with biologists from the state Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife, students have helped gather essential information on the county’s osprey population. Students monitor a particular area of the salt marshes, travelling by boat; they check osprey nests; climb towers; remove young ospreys and tag them with a state-issued serial numbered band, and then replace them in their nests. Students record all data and report results to the state biologists.
The real-world experiences are part of the Natural Sciences CTE Program of Study in the Agriculture, Foods and Natural Resources Career Cluster, which provides structured learning experiences with industry and education partners. In addition, students belong to the school’s FFA chapter.
Through the ongoing work with habitat restoration and osprey tagging, the program has become well known to local, state and national partners. Students were also called in to help move an osprey nest, when a citizen in the area discovered the birds had built a nest on the resident’s chimney. With eggs still in place, students worked with US Department of Agriculture wildlife services officials, and the NJ Department of Environmental Protection, to safely relocate the birds.
Contact: Nancy Wheeler Driscoll, director of curriculum and instruction,[email protected]
Submitted by school district.