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KWEC summer program registration begins
new slt wetlands
The common buckeye butterfly is just one of many local species participants in the butterfly count may find on July 13, starting at the Kansas Wetlands Education Center. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

Join the Butterfly Quest

Take part in a butterfly count and learn how to identify our local butterfly species at the Cheyenne Bottoms 3rd Annual Butterfly Quest, beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 13 at the Kansas Wetlands Education Center.
A 30-minute review of local butterfly species and identification tips takes place from 8:30-9 a.m., followed by searching and counting butterfly species for an official North American Butterfly Association Count. For those who are confident in their butterfly identification skills, arrive at 9 a.m. to head out on the count. Participants will break into groups to survey Cheyenne Bottoms and the surrounding area.
The NABA Count is in its 38th year and gathers information to track population trends. Organized like the Christmas Bird Count, much of the count is done from a vehicle, with maps and data sheets provided. Those who want to continue after a noon lunch break will go back out from 1-4 p.m. There is a fee of $3 for the count, due the day of the event. Preregister by July 10 by calling KWEC, 1-877-243-9268, to reserve a spot or for more information.

Looking for something for the kids to do during the depth of summer vacation? Pam Martin, educator at the Kansas Wetlands Education Center, suggests signing them up for the center’s summer programs, held Thursdays, July 11, 18 and 25.
KWEC is located northeast of Great Bend at 592 NE K-156.
Developed for children ages 4 through sixth grade, one-hour programs will be offered at no charge. Children 4-7 years old meet from 10:30-11:30 a.m., and must be accompanied by an adult. Children 8-12 years old meet from 2-3 p.m.
Programs include lots of hands-on learning, with trips outside if at all possible. Parents are asked to dress children in old clothes and shoes and bring sunscreen, insect repellent and water.
Each program will include activities, games and/or a craft and sometimes a story. Programs are presented at no charge, but donations for supplies are appreciated.
There is no minimum number for programs but the maximum capacity is 20 per class. Pre-registration is required by calling the KWEC, 620-566-7456, or toll free, 877-243-9268. Registration deadlines are one week before the class.

Programs, dates and registration deadlines are:
• “Mighty ducks” - July 11 (register by July 5) Discover the amazing variety of ducks, the many ways they survive in water and conduct an experiment with milk that demonstrates how water “runs off a duck’s back.” Participants will also make a duck mask.

• “Home sweet home” - July 18 (register by July 12)  Animals call a lot of interesting places home. Explore animal homes with a hike to learn where and how animals make their homes, then make a toad abode to take home for your yard/garden toads.
• “Take Flight” - July 25 (register by July 19) Travel along with birds and other animals as they make amazing journeys to faraway places. Participants will take a great migration and use birds as a subject for a craft project.