Outreach: Ottawa City Chase

Outing: Ottawa City Chase

When: Saturday 27 July

Where: Glebe Memorial Park

Activities: Bird Migration Obstacle Course

When many Canadians think of migration, they picture V-shaped flocks of Canada geese. However, at Ottawa City Chase the Nature Canada team painted a very different picture of migration to the City Chase participants who waddled their way through the migration obstacle course.

Birds can journey thousands of miles in their annual migrations, though our City Chase participants only had to cross a park field. The obstacle course, which involved holding a ball (or egg) between the knees and hands behind the back to create a duck-like silhouette, had five main points and one catch; the participants could not touch the egg with their hands. If they dropped their egg they had to pick it up with their knees. In an effort to teach about the dangers of migration, the chasers had to first “fly” between caution cones that were decorated as trees, then jump inside four hula hoops representing the island rest stops in large bodies of water, then limbo underneath a tree branch and finally waddle up a hill to lay their egg in a nest. Their partners would then grab the egg from the nest, put it between their legs, and complete the challenge in reverse. The process was difficult for a number of players, some of whom noted that they were glad they were not born a bird.IMG_1430

Nonetheless, the weary laughter from participants indicated they were happy to embrace their inner bird. Many of those waiting and observing inquired about Nature Canada and the IBA, where they could witness real migrating birds. Considering that it was a hot day, and we quickly depleted our supply of water, I’m sure many of the City Chasers wished that they could rest in the cool waters of the Lac Deschênes IBA with the migrating birds.