Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Owl Pellets and One Vicious Rodent

Mouse Skeleton from an Owl Pellet"What is that?" You ask? Don't tell me your son doesn't dissect owl pellets and reconstruct mice skeletons too?

But that's exactly what he gave me. It was a school science project where the children were given little fur balls that owls cough up after a meal, the ones that contain all the undigestable parts of the meal, only they're not called fur balls but owl pellets. Spencer told me with pride how he got an A on the assignment because his bones were in the correct order and that he'd cleaned them so well. Gulp.

"You cleaned the bones yourself?"

"Yup," he said with a smile.

I looked at his rather dirty hands with new-found horror.

"Oh." Gulp. "Thanks, uh, it's lovely Spencer. I'll put it on the fridge."

It ought to help me diet. I think I've lost my appetite.

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35 comments:

Dapoppins said...

I remember goinging on a hike once and finding the mother load...a ton of owl pellets...or some other predator bird. I happily took them all apart.

Now that I think about it. It is kind of gross.

greetings by way of Heffalump!

The Expatriate Chef said...

You know our cat coughs up some scary-looking pellets as well. Just give me an email if your son needs another science project. Ugh.

Beckie said...

That is WAY cool. Gross, but way cool!

tegdirb92 said...

I think that's pretty cool. I guess they are wrapped in fur so they don't hurt their insides?

Rebecca said...

Is that seriously a mouse? It's more the size of a rat. But I suppose that's not the point. The real point is your son opened owl pellets and cleaned mouse bones and somehow put the bones in the correct order. I am both gagging and impressed... but more just gagging.

Pearls of Wisdom said...

I am impressed.

Thanks for sharing and Happy WW.

Angel Mama ():)

Barbara H. said...

He did great work...but I think I'd gulp. too!!

My Ice Cream Diary said...

I'll bet this is a first for your fridge decor.

An Ordinary Mom said...

I remember doing this same thing when I was in school :) !!

Jamie J said...

I remember doing the same thing as a student. I actually thought it was pretty cool....but then again I like anatomy and knowing how the body works together. I think this exhibit looks awesome.

Jordan said...

I did it in school, too. Where did you guys grow up? I did it at a children's museum in North Carolina.

Jenn in Holland said...

My brothers did a cat skeleton once for a science fair. It was a long and involved process including bleaching bones in a big vat in the backyard, but man it was cool once it was complete!

Well done boys!

Erica said...

Uhhh, very nice and... astute, what did his teacher think?

Shaz said...

Makes me thinl awww but there again its nature. happy Peaceful WW x x

Toni said...

That's really cool! Mine is up at
Being An Air Force Wife

AuthorMomWithDogs said...

Much cooler than dissecting frogs!

Chris said...

That's either fascinating or really gross. I can't decide.

Donna said...

Oh yeah, and I had to read this before breakfast. Great entry!

Write From Karen said...

LOL! Seriously, that WOULD be a great appetite suppressant!

Babystepper said...

We did this in junior high in my Life Science class. I promise you, there was a hamster skeleton in mine. I've always wondered how on earth that owl got ahold of a hamster...and if it was mine that ran away.

Melissa R. Garrett said...

I've just lost my appetite, too. And here I was, eating breakfast ~ LOL!

Jenn said...

What a fabulous project! My young'un and I may have to search the woods and try this ourselves.

JAM said...

Wow, you need to have the boy watch that cop show called bones. Aside from the great dialogue and lines, the lady Dr. that the show is about is nicknamed bones, and when a murder case turns up bones, they get her and her amazing bone reading powers to reconstruct the death and help find the killer or killers.

Anyway, I said all of that to say this, on the show, they always thoroughly boil the bones in water to clean them of any remaining, um, meat.

Buy the boy a pot and let it be dedicated to bone boiling, kind of like I would be in deep trouble if I used my wifes cast iron corn bread skillet for something other than making cornbread.

(Do I win the dumbest comment of the day award?)

Ni Yachen said...

A coworker's daughter did the same thing and in now hanges on her office wall. But then engineers think it is pretty cool.

Gina said...

Uh, I'm glad I'm a few years away from this stuff.

Judi said...

Ewwww.....I think I lost my appetite too.

Daisy said...

Oh, the science teacher part of my LOVES your son.

my4kids said...

Uhm he did a good job....I don't think I could keep it anywhere I'd be eating....or maybe that would work for my diet also. That or my checkbook would dwindle down to nothing....

chelle said...

Mmmm that would definitely make me hesitate going in the fridge!

Excellent work though!

kailani said...

Thank goodness I have girls! LOL!

Kailani
An Island Life

Magpie said...

That is way cool.

Schelle said...

he did a great job!

Exer said...

I remember this fondly from my middle school days in Ft. Huachuca, Arizona. It was one of my favorite science projects.

Thanks for the good memories!

allrileyedup said...

Yikes!

I must admit, though, his project is definitely deserving of an A. It looks very well done.

Anonymous said...

It needs to be mentioned that the owl pellets are sterilized before they ever reach the classrooms. They are great homeschool projects, too. They don't cost a fortune and they teach! Your soon did a really good job on his! Sue B.