An afternoon with the "Natuurstruners".
Saturday 21 April 2007
Karien is a volunteer for the "Natuurstruners" (Texel 'dialect' for "Nature Tramps") youth group on the island of Texel. Saturday, Ecomare ran their "Migratory Bird" youth activity for the "Natuurstruners". When I learned that Leo (a Texel sea kayaker) was narrating the activity I expressed my interest to join the hike. Leo had just one condition: that I act as a kid.
Out of the Ecomare van came a globe and various stuffed wading birds and Leo asking questions and explaining about why the birds visit Texel. Texel is a huge "restaurant"with a wide variety of delicacies on the birds' menu; opening hours in 6hr25min intervals around local low water...
After spotting and observing the various dining birds and the children making notes, we head out to the tidal flats to have a closer look at what is on the birds' menu. The most peculiar thing I wondered about were the 'snotty' egg cases of a "gestippelde dieseltrein worm" (Latin: Anaitides maculata). Word for word translated into English it would be a "Spotted diesel train worm". But it becomes even more fascinating when (back home) I learned it's English name: "Paddle worm". We did not see the worm on our digs, so it must have gone paddling.
© A.M. Schoevers