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The Community Library will be closed Thursday, November 27 for Thanksgiving. Have a safe and Happy Holiday!

Discovery Center

Activities Fun Facts Books

Hear ye, hear ye! The Emperor Penguin has arrived!

Hey there Discoverers!

In case you all haven't had your fill of "Thing with Wings" now you can see if you're as tall as an Emperor Penguin! That's right boys and girls, come down and check out how you measure up to an Emperor Penguin.

Before you all race in to measure up, let's take a moment to brush up on some facts about Emperor Penguins.

  • Emperors Penguins are the largest of all penguins—an average an Emperor Penguin stand some 45 inches (a little over 3 feet) tall. 
  • Emperor Penguins are flightless animals that live on the Antarctic ice and in the frigid surrounding waters.
  • Emperor Penguins will huddle together to escape wind and conserve warmth. Each Emperor Penguin will take turns moving to the group's protected and relatively toasty interior. Once a penguin has warmed a bit it will move to the perimeter of the group so that others can enjoy protection from the icy elements.
  • Emperor penguins spend the long winter on the open ice—and even breed during this harsh season. Females lay a single egg and then promptly leave it behind. The female Emperor Penguins undertake an extended hunting trip that lasts some two months! Depending on the extent of the ice pack, females may need to travel some 50 miles just to reach the open ocean, where they will feed on fish, squid, and krill. At sea, Emperor Penguins can dive to 1,850 feet—deeper than any other bird—and stay under for more than 20 minutes.
  • Male Emperor Penguins keep the newly laid eggs warm, but they do not sit on them, as many other birds do. Males stand and protect their eggs from the elements by balancing them on their feet and covering them with feathered skin known as a brood pouch. During this two-month bout of babysitting the males eat nothing and are at the mercy of the Antarctic elements.
  • When the female penguins return to the rest of the penguins, they bring a belly full of food that they regurgitate (or throw up) for the newly hatched chicks. Meanwhile, the male Emperor Penguins take to the sea in search of food for themselves.
  • Mothers care for their young chicks and protect them with the warmth of their own brood pouches. Outside of this warm cocoon, a chick could die in just a few minutes because of the extremely cold temperatures. In December, Antarctic summer, the pack ice begins to break up and open water appears near the breeding site, just as young emperor penguins are ready to swim and fish on their own.

Wow those penguins are some tough birds!!

Now that you've brushed up or learned some new facts on Emperor Penguins, come on in and see if you are taller than an Emperor Penguin! 


5/25/2013

Quail Facts!

Hey there Discoverers! Many of you have been so curious about what is going to happen to our quails after they leave the library. Hopefully, the following information can help you all out. 

The quails will be sent to a broader on May 30, 2013. 

Biologist Eric Powers will raise the quail until they are 6 to 8 weeks old.

The quails will be released into the wild tentatively on July 18, 2013.



If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to ask a staff member while you're at the library! 

5/25/2013

I bet you didn't know that!

Hey there Discoverers! Did you know that we have butterflies in our discovery center? They just emerged from their cocoons a few days ago. If you haven't already, you should really come down to the library and see them in person!


With that, here are some facts about butterflies that you may not have known!
  • Did you know that the differences between butterflies and moths are the shape of their bodies, the structure of their antennae (feelers), and the way in which their front and hind wings are held together to act as a single unit. A butterfly's body is generally more slender than a moth's. Most butterflies' antennae end in a club-like knob while most moths' antennae are threadlike or feathery. Most butterflies are active during the day and hold their wings vertically while at rest. Most moths, on the other hand, fly at dusk or night and, when at rest, hold their wings over the body. 
  • A Butterfly's wings are covered with overlapping rows of tiny scales, a characteristic butterflies share with moths. 
  • A caterpillar’s first meal is its own eggshell. It then spends most of its time eating the leaves of the plant on which it hatched. An adult butterfly uncoils its long, straw-like proboscis to sip nectar from flowers, juice from rotting fruit and water from puddles. 
  • There are about 17,500 species of butterflies spread throughout almost the entire world. 
  • Butterflies are found worldwide except on the continent of Antarctica. Many species of butterflies migrate to avoid adverse conditions. Most migrate relatively short distances, but Monarch Butterflies and several other species migrate thousands of miles. 
  • The greatest threats to butterflies are habitat change and loss due to development by humans.Climate change is also threatening species of butterfly. 
  • A butterflies typical behavior is as follows: 
Life cycle: From egg to adult, butterflies undergo a series of physical transformations known as metamorphosis. After mating, the female butterfly lays her eggs on a caterpillar food or “host” plant. The eggs can hatch within a few days, or within months or even years, depending on whether or not conditions are right.

After hatching, a caterpillar begins to eat the host plant. The caterpillar sheds its skin several times during this stage. It then seeks a sheltered spot, suspends itself by silken threads and sheds one last time to reveal skin that will harden to form the chrysalis or pupa. Days, months or even years later, depending on the species, a fully developed winged adult emerges from the chrysalis and the cycle begins anew.

Defense Mechanisms: Many butterflies have developed interesting ways of defending themselves from predators. One method is disguise, or “cryptic coloration”, where the butterfly has the ability to look like a leaf or blend into the bark of a tree to hide from predators. Another method is chemical defense, where the butterfly has evolved to have toxic chemicals in its body. These species of butterfly are often brightly colored, and predators have learned over time to associate their bright color with the bad taste of the chemicals.

Now that you know some facts why don't you try out a quiz on your knowledge of butterflies!

Take a QUIZ on butterflies!

Below is a picture of a Painted Lady butterfly; the butterflies that are located in the Discovery Center!



Until next time Discoverers!

5/14/2013

The countdown is on!

That's right folks! The countdown has begun. We have only 4 more days until our Quail eggs hatch! Of course this date is just a guess, but we here at the library have high hopes that the quails will hatch on that day. Are you ready for it?

Have you learned some facts about quails? No! Well you're in luck. Here are some facts for all the discoverers out there!
  • Quails are stout birds with sturdy legs and curved bills. 
  • Their feathers are usually brown, speckled with white, black, or chestnut. These colors blend well with the grassy surroundings in which the birds live. 
  • Quails are capable of flight, but are usually seen on the ground. 
  • Quails eat weed seeds and insects. They help out many farmers with what they eat! 
  • Quail are not strong fliers, swimmers, or waders, because they do not need to be. They search for food, or forage, almost entirely on the ground. 
  • North American quail is called the bobwhite in the North and the partridge in the South. So that means that a Quail and a Partridge are the same animal! 
  • A covey (KUHV ee) is a what you would call a flock or group of quail. A covey may have 10 or fewer birds or as many as 100 or more, depending upon the species of quail. 
  • Like other birds, quails build nests in which to lay their eggs. But unlike most birds, quails build their nests on the ground. It might be either the male or the female quail that chooses the nesting spot behind tall grass or bushes. He or she then scrapes a shallow hole and lines it with soft grass and leaves. Then the female lays her eggs in the nest. The female will sit on the eggs to keep them warm until they hatch. 
  • Quail are pretty fast runners for birds that is. When a quail is in a hurry, it can run about 20 feet in one second!

    Well there you go Discoverers! Just a few facts about Quails! Check back for more facts and updates about our Discovery Center! Also, remember to come and check it out in person!! 



    5/13/2013

    Calling all those who are looking to DISCOVER!

    That's right kids! Our spring discovery center is back and it is packed full of things to discover! Come check out the 2013 Discovery Center with the theme "Discover... Things With Wings".

    Currently, we have quail eggs. Now, this is very different from the eggs that we have had in the past, but different isn't always bad. Come on down to the Children's department and check out these eggs. While you're here you can check out our countdown! Each day, our staff here will cross off the day on the calendar and that means we are one step closer to hatching QUAILS! Isn't that just so exciting?

    We also have an oldie, but a goody! We have caterpillars that will change into butterflies! Right now our caterpillars are in their cocoons making their transformations into beautiful Monarch Butterflies.

    Now, if all that isn't going to get you to make a trip to the library we have one more thing up our sleeve... In this discovery center we have a dark, creepy BAT CAVE! That's right! Right here in the Children's department we have our very own bat cave. In this cave you can experience, just how bats are in their natural environment. We must ask that you watch your head as you enter the cave!

    There is so much to learn and discover in the 2013 Discovery Center. Make sure you check this blog and our Twitter account to learn cool facts about quails, butterflies, bats and basically anything else with wings! But to gain the ultimate experience you may just have to ditch the computer and check it out in person!

    If you can't make it into the library, we do have our handy dandy webcam set up! You'll be able to watch the quails from the comfort of your home.

    Well, until next time Discovers!


    5/7/2013

    New Chickies!

    Well kids, our first batch of chicks have returned to the farm, but no worries we have another batch waiting to hatch! Make sure you take a trip to the library to check the new batch out in person. Can't make it into the library? Don't you worry! You can watch the chick eggs on our webcam!
    5/5/2012

    Just keep waiting... Just keep waiting...

    Patience, my friends. We must be patient for only a few more days and then the chicks will begin to emerge into this world! Can you feel the excitement in the air?
    4/21/2012

    The anticipation is building!

    Only a few more days until those eggs start rocking and rolling! Are you excited for these eggs to hatch and for the cute babies to emerge?



    Stay tuned for more chick related news!

    4/19/2012

    The Eggs Are Back in Town! The Eggs Are Back in Town!

    That's right everyone! The eggs are back in town! We will be hatching a batch of little chickie's in about 21 days. Oh my gosh! It's so exciting right? We all know how much everyone loves the chicks so the webcam has been set up so you can watch all the action from the comfort of your couch or or anywhere in your home that has Internet access of course! Although right now the chick eggs are not very exciting as they are just stagnant and kind of boring, but if you just patiently wait those brief 21 days the eggs will begin to shake, rattle and roll and when this happens the chicks will emerge!


    Make sure you stay tuned to the blog and webcam for all your chick updates.

    4/12/2012

    6 days later

    So here we are 6 days later and what is there to show for in the new Discovery Center? Well, LOTS!

    We have Aquatic Frogs, 4 Mice and CHICK EGGS!! Our chick eggs are 6 days old. Typically chick eggs hatch in a full 21 days. So make sure you keep your eye closely on those eggs so you don't miss a thing!

    Also, make sure you make a trip to the library to check all these wonderful creatures out in person!

    4/9/2012

    With waited breathe and avid curiosity, the time has finally come. Are you ready?

    Are you ready for the BIG change to our Discovery Center. We have transitioned from discovering optical illusions to discovering ANIMALS!

    That's right, there are so many animals to be discovered here in the Children's & Parents' Services Department. In order to find out just what the animals are you'll have to make a special trip to the library!

    Also back by popular demand are the CHICKS! Make sure to check the Discovery Center out online at www.communitylibrary.org/Kids/DiscoveryCenter/ to watch the chicks hatch and much, much more!!

    CPSD looks forward to seeing you and watching as you discover animals!

    4/1/2012


    www.flickr.com
    quail released