## July 24, 2006

### Lesson plans for the classroom

Since my primary goal of this trip was to find opportunities to bring my experiences back into my 2nd grade classroom, I have found two activities that I plan to use. Both of them are tasks that I did in the research of the monkeys, and I feel will both work in my classroom.

The first revolves around my primary task: careful and accurate observation of the movements of the monkeys. First we found a monkey (not always an easy task and involved some heavy duty tracking and binocular work!). Then we identified which one it was. Then, with a partner we began to write in code what the monkey was doing every minute until we lost the monkey. Sometimes that was 15 minutes, other times it was 2 1/2 hours. One of us held the clock and announced when it beeped. The other kept sight on the monkey and said what the monkey was doing, precisely on the beep. It was recorded on a sheet, with the monkey's name on top, date and time at start of 'follow' and our names as observers.

My plan, after showing my PowerPoint slide show of my trip, is to explain to my students how important accurate observation is in the scientific process. I'll go over the steps in the process in a way my second graders can understand: hypothesis (or guess as to what you think will happen), procedure, materials needed, observation, recording, and conclusions.

We will then try to duplicate my experience with an animal much easier to do in the classroom--crickets! I have them anyway as food for my leopard gecko. One could also use large birds such as crows if you wanted to do it outside. Children will pair up, choose a cricket to follow, and then record behavior on the minute for about 10 minutes. We would probably have codes such as: MO for moving, RE for resting, CL for climbing, FO for foraging for food, DR for drinking, etc. We can compare results, graph them and use them in a variety of ways after collecting the data.

The next lesson I plan to do was an activity I did just one day--vegetation plotting. Again we were paired up but this time a botinist was also with us. We were shown a randomly selected 10x10 meter plot of the forest. Our task was to find all trees with a diameter larger than 5 centimeters, label them, and record their name. The purpose was to find what kind of food was available to the monkeys in different parts of the forest.

The way I would bring this into my classroom, would be to have my students plot the vegetation in a 10x10 meter plot of school property. We have 5 acres and some of it is quite wild. I would stake out the area ahead of time and then ask the students to record by drawing on paper, all the trees, plants and grasses they see. We will try to give them names. Again, accuracy in recording what is seen will be the goal.

I hope you can use some of these ideas!
Barbara

## July 19, 2006

### Back from Kenya

I am now in Heathrow Airport, once again waiting out an 8-hour layover. Yesterday I had an hour flight from Malindi to Nairobi, where I had to spend about 8 hours as well. I actually got some sleep on the flight to London, about 3 hours I think and I feel pretty good this morning. I’ll be here until afternoon, fly for nine hours and arrive in Seattle only one hour later than when I left London!

I can hardly believe that I’ve actually left Kenya. I keep reliving memories and smiling to myself. I see those sweet faces as we passed by on the van, children waving as they walked to school. Each school had a different, colorful uniform. They looked so clean in them. The schools have benches only, about 70 students to a classroom and they have no writing materials. They only recite and read off the teacher’s blackboard. When we went to the Gede dancers compound, we saw a blackboard set up under a tree with multiplication tables written over it. Apparently that was there classroom.

The Kenyan people speak a very exact British-style English. Their hands are beautiful, with long graceful fingers. They move deliberately and slowly, with poise and grace. I marveled each day watching the women walk with large buckets (water?) on their heads. Yesterday on my drive to the airport I saw two children carrying their books that way, practicing, no doubt.

Our Earthwatch Team hopes to keep in close contact, share photos with Kodak EasyShare over the net, and have a reunion. We complained at times over the hard work or difficult circumstances, but each one of us was profoundly touched by the experience. We enjoyed laughter and tears as we worked and lived for a short while in a very beautiful and untouched culture so different from our own. I will always remember my summer in Kenya and hope that my students can benefit from my experiences, stories, and mementos that I carry back into my classroom.

Fellow teacher teammates from top, left to right: Andrew, Meredith, Allison, Karin, Marsha and Kiara.

## July 16, 2006

### The End of the Monkey Tale

We have come to the end of the expedition and it is quite sad. We have become quite close not only to each other but the monkeys. Yesterday afternoon we had to say ‘goodbye’ to them and wish them well. Maurice, came out, I’m sure, to say ‘goodbye’ to me as well and I think did as well.

After work we had a farewell dinner in a nice restaurant in Watamu. There were 14 of us all together, the 7 teachers, Steffen and Geoffrey the Principal Investigators, our 4 research assistants, and the parasite man—who does the lab work on the samples we bring in. It took 3 hours from arriving to leaving, but we had a very fun time. We decided to give Steffen a poster of the Top Ten Reasons we were late to work—just silly excuses that got us roaring with laughter. We also did a pretend “Follow” on him like he was a monkey. He was a very good sport and enjoyed the roasting.

Today we stayed at the guesthouse, A Rocha, and did data entry. We began to enter on computers all the information we had gathered on the follows, adding up all the times we saw a monkey standing, feeding, moving, etc. There will need to be many more hours of data work after we leave to put in all we got.

We had our last lunch and said goodbyes with tears in our eyes, promising to email and send photos (I collected over 250!) We plan to have a reunion in Colorado in January when Geoffrey begins teaching at a university there.

I am just now dropped off at a very fancy hotel. Hemingways, a very British style hotel, for a one night stay before I spend the next two days and nights in airports and planes. I hoped to swim and maybe snorkel but it is pouring rain at this moment…I’m actually just content to have some quiet, down time. Sharing a room for 10 days with two ‘strangers/now friends’ is a bit wearing. I’ll indulge in Tea at 4:00, dinner at 7:30 and breakfast tomorrow before I leave for the airport.

I miss family, friends and Seattle but I had such an absolutely fabulous time and experience that I just feel so lucky. The people I was with are just great—able to tough it out and be positive with a sense of humor. We worked very hard but felt appreciated. What more could I ask for?

I have some great ideas for bringing back my travels into the classroom. Also, I am hoping to have a great contact for an outreach service project for elementary students here. Schooling is free for elementary students, but they must provide their own uniforms and supplies. I am hoping to be able to find a school that our school, Villa Academy, might be able to help. We could buy uniforms for those student who can’t afford it, and therefore wouldn’t be able to attend school. I am excited about the possibility and hope it can work out.

This is my last entry before arriving home. I have some photos I’ll download at that point, but it’s too time consuming and expensive to do here. Thank you for following my blog!

## July 14, 2006

### Third World Experience

Today was pretty typical. I followed two monkeys in the morning for good periods of time, like over an hour each. I am usually tracking with another teacher, Allison, these days, and a researcher assists us when we need it. Sometimes we need help confirming the identity of a monkey or sometimes we loose one into heavy foliage or to another tree and Laura or Monica help get us back on track. They were given almost a month just to get the know the animals before doing follows like we are, and we only had one or two days! Sometimes it’s frustrating and others, when I can ID one and stick with her for a while, it’s very fun.

This afternoon after work we saw a short African drumming and dancing show right outside Gede. I enjoyed seeing them heat up the drum skins on the fire to get them taut and the right tone before beating them. Some dancers performed and they made us get up and dance too! The performance was very simply and fairly primitive—not very polished at al, but authentic.

Tomorrow is our last full day working. Our hours are so long that we haven’t really had a chance to enjoy the ocean, which is close enough to hear all night. It is rough and full of seaweed here but some have tried to swim. I think I’ll wait until I get to my nice hotel the last night and try from there.

I think we will have an opportunity to go to DreamWorld tomorrow after work for our last Internet Café time. It has been impossible to do it more frequently and also there has only been one time this entire time that we have been near a bank. I was able to use my charge card a couple times, but otherwise there are no opportunities to get money. I truly understand what it is like to be in a third world country and not be living in touristy places.

## July 13, 2006

### African Safari

What an amazing experience--I can hardly believe all that we saw and did in the last two days. Our trip to East Tsavo Park was really perfect in the every way. We drove about 2 ½ hours with our wonderful driver, Pius, who has been with us all week. The drive was over very rutty, brick red, dirt roads. Tsavo is the largest park in Kenya and we drove forever over it, it seemed, and yet we covered only a small corner of it. We saw so many animals I can hardly remember the names—elephants, gazelles, impalas, lions, crocodiles, hippos, cheetahs, dik diks, warthogs, giraffes, many different kinds of birds including ostriches, and others. It was so fabulous to see the animals in their natural habitat, grazing, drinking at the waterhole, dusting themselves and just being free and natural. We couldn’t get too close or get out of the van, but the top lifts up to allow you to stand up for better views. We were so grateful to have our good binoculars along!

The camp, Satao (which means giraffe in Swahili) was the most plush tent camp I’ve even seen. Each of 20 tents were quite large with a thatched roof overhead and a nice, stone verandah. It had lovely beds, and some carpets on the floor, lots of lighting and a few little tables. At the back was an enclosed bathroom like I’ve never seen—stone flooring, a gorgeous stone sink that separated the toilet from the shower area, big fluffy towels and lovely soaps and shampoos. The shower area was simply a large canvas bucket that got filled with solar heated water at 6:30 pm each night. The shower head just sprayed water to the floor which then drained out. It was a delightful shower before dinner, especially if one compares it to the rather scary shower we have in our room at A Rocha (you are afraid to touch the walls for fear of contracting some dreadful disease!)

The wait service couldn’t be more accommodating and formal as we sat outside on the veranda overlooking the waterhole for lunch, then inside the open-aired restaurant for dinner and breakfast. One could hardly start to pour their own coffee, before a server jumped in to do it for you. The food was fabulous, and we especially enjoyed the BBQ for dinner. To each table was brought a red hot grill. You chose your own kebabs of chicken, lamb or beef and then cooked them at your table. For dessert they made a crepe for each person and filled it with your choice of fillings. Delicious! We slept with elephants trumpeting and lions roaring within earshot and I loved it, but one of the others, Meredith, was very frightened and didn’t sleep hardly at all.

Today we toured a bit more and then came home to A Rocha. We arrived just in time for lunch then out to the Ruins for 4 hours of following monkeys. I was thrilled to track Nancy for 2 hours and 40 minutes! She let me get within 3 or 4 feet of her and completely ignored us as we watched and recorded what she was doing every minute on the beep. The sole male of our group, Maurice, is completely comfortable with us around now and usually stays on the ground near us posing regally and making sure his ‘women’ are around and safe. I am starting to see some personalities in the different monkeys; Athena is very happy being by herself, Kamili is a grouch both to humans and other monkeys, Nancy is a sweetheart and lets me get so close to her. They all seem to be good mothers and the babies are now old enough to be on their own for most of the time, just periodically checking in with Mom for a little snack or some grooming. We watch our monkeys go over the fence to steal corn and mangos from the farm next door. A woman sits there all day by the fence trying to scare them away and probably can’t figure out why we are allowing them to take corn and are just quietly follow the monkeys! They see them as pests, and indeed that’s what they are to farmers.

Monkey "Nancy" attempting to steal corn from over the fence.

## July 11, 2006

### The Secrets of Monkey Following

I’m getting more used to looking for monkeys, walking softly on the crunching wood so as to not startle them, to be able to sense when they might be near and to see them in the trees as they move across the forest. The area that the three of us are in is much more challenging, because the monkeys are less used to people and easily flee, and the forest is very dense. We rarely use trails when following a monkey—just barge ahead into the bushes, get scratches on your arms and face from the thorns, watching for wasp nests and huge spiders. I try not to really think about what might be around me! Haven’t seen any snakes yet, however, which is conforting.

We had another treat today—we were given a few hours in the morning to go to Malindi for bank, shopping, lunch and to see a great wood carving Cooperative. About 500 men sit under a thatched roof workshop carving out figurines etc. from wood that is brought to them as logs. They use hand tools, carving the shapes from memory, with skills passed from father to son. In the huge shop you saw the fruits of their handicraft as beautifully shaped, sanded, and painted bowls, figures, animals, masks, etc. They used very fine wood such as ebony and teak for many of the pieces. The products were more expensive than what you can find in the local kiosks, but of better quality. And the money goes directly back to the makers of the craft rather than through middlemen.

Back to Gede Ruins from 2-6pm for more monkey following. I had a little different job for two hours and that was to record all the trees in a plot of land, 10x10 meters. Four of us measured diameter of trees, identified them, and determined the circumference of the canopy. We did two different plots of land. It was fun to do something different.

I’m very excited because tomorrow we have a day off and four of us are going on a Safari to Tsavo Park! We’ll have our same driver and van take us, and we’ll stay in cabin tents right out with the animals. The tour is more expensive than I was anticipating but I simply can’t pass us the opportunity to do this when I’m here in Kenya. I can’t wait!

## July 10, 2006

### A Special Pair of Sandals

Today we had a little diversion from the regular schedule in the afternoon. After watching monkeys from 7-12:45 and 2:30-4:30 our driver took us into the little town of Watamu. We were able to walk down the street and look into a few kiosks where items were for sale, mostly for the tourists at the few hotels in the area. All us women were anxious to order handmade sandals, which we did. They will be made in our size, with beaded decorations that we choose (about 20-30 different styles to choose from) and will be ready tomorrow afternoon. The price is 450 Kenya shillings which is about \$6.30. One woman sat there and began to sew the beads onto the leather by hand as we spoke. We asked if they could really have 10 pairs of sandals made by hand by tomorrow and he said, “Yes, we have many people to help us.” They will probably work for many hours on these sandals and I will always think of that as I wear and enjoy them.

## July 09, 2006

### My Work with Monkeys

Yesterday our task, from 7-12:45 and from 2:30-4:30 was to try to identify and then stick with one female monkey for awhile. This involves using binoculars to carefully look at the tail, nipples, and then face for distinguishing features. Tails can be crooked, probably from an injury, a little thicker with hair or thinner, and the way they end can be different. Nipples usually are pink, but some have black spots on them, and they can be of different lengths. Who knew! The last thing you look at is the face for eyebrows, open mouth, and the eyes. You have to study the monkeys for quite some time to be able to positively identify one.

After you found and correctly gave it a name (our research assistants are usually close by to confirm that), we headed out to follow where the monkey led us. Sometimes they jumped from tree to tree looking for fruits or leaves. Other times they sat and chewed, groomed another adult or infant, suckled a baby. Our task is to follow as well as we can for as long as we can. This involves going through heavy brush, over branches, breaking trail through vines, over rocks etc. It’s very physically demanding and tiring. And of course, the weather is hot and humid.

Today we were to do the same but added the component of pairing up with another teammate and then recording each minute what the monkey was doing. We have all sorts of codes and abbreviations to use: resting, moving, foraging, feeding, standing, suckling an infant, and carrying an infant. One watched the monkey while the other manned the stopwatch and recorded the actions. I was happy that Laura and I were able to track Athena for 52 minutes (though we did lose her for 12 minutes during that time). This afternoon our luck wasn’t as good. We could only follow Shujaa for about 6 minutes before she got away from us. We never did find her again.

Another task we have is to collect any ‘poop’ we can positively identify from a particular monkey and to take it to the field station for drying. It will be taken back to the US by our Principal Investigator, Steffan, who then analyzes it for the stress hormones. I’ve watched the process, but haven’t had the privilege of collecting the poop myself, though I’m sure that will come soon enough!

Me, at work, with binoculars and recording sheet

The area around Gede and our guest house is truly amazing. It’s very hard to describe. It feels almost untouched by modern influence. Everyone walks or rides bikes. I’ve only seen a very few cars, probably for the tourists. There are some bus/vans and also you can hire someone to carry you on the back of their bike—bike taxis! There are two little towns we drive through where anyone and everyone sets up a little thatched hut or scrap metal shack and sells something or offers some service—Best Lady Hair Salon, tools, fabric, plastic bowls of every shape and size, mangos or tomatoes or roasted corn. Goats wander everywhere as do the people. They mostly wear traditional dress, though the children wear their school uniforms—we see 4 schools on our 20 minute drive and each has their own uniform.

The people look well fed and happy; they are truly beautiful! Children smile and wave as we pass by. All ages love to walk and use it as a social time. Babies are carried on backs, and packages, bowls, and food are balanced on women’s heads. I feel like I’ve taken a time machine back 100 years to another era, and then all of a sudden you see “Internet Café” signs and they are setting up benches to watch the World Cup finals at the only TV in town.

## July 09, 2006

### My Trip to Kenya

July 5
I left Seattle today at 7:10pm on British Airlines. Getting there three hours ahead was not too early—lots of travelers these summer days. The flight is completely full, a huge Boeing 747 that holds over 280 passengers. I am in a middle seat between two nice women. One is from Hungary and is flying home for a surprise visit with her mother. The other is traveling to Zimbabwe to help with medical supplies she is bringing for AIDS workers. We had some interesting conversations.

July 6, 2006
Not much sleep on the plane even with earplugs, eye covers and a blowup neck pillow. I had a few catnaps I guess. We were packed in like sardines, with little room for feet and arms. The individual monitors for movies, TV shows, a map of our progress toward London, and some games was kind of fun I must say! It felt good to get out the of cramped plane and know my next 10 hours would be spent walking around gigantic Heathrow Airport. Wow—the duty free shopping area is as big as any mall! Good thing I’m not tempted.
I’ll try to get really tired of walking so I can sleep on the next 8 hour flight! I wish I didn’t have to carry my laptop and heavy daypack with me however.

I walk and sit and try to read and sit and sit. Ten hours go slowly. I take out my Earthwatch briefing and try to match the monkeys’ characteristics with their names: Angle has an angle in her tail, Sasha has a sash of white hairs on her ears, Nora has white nostrils, Poa has the round face, etc. Any little clue to match names with faces to help me remember. But will I be able to recognize them in the wild, the real monkeys as opposed to their photos, that sit so still in my hand and let me study them at length?

July 7, 2006
After another long wait and flight to Nairobi, then a fun prop plane “puddle jumper” to Malindi we have met up and arrived in our digs. Africa is amazing! I can’t believe how tropical the plants are and how beautiful the scenery is. I love the palm frond thatched roofs of the Kenyans. We have some Sykes monkeys around our rustic guesthouse and they like to run along the metal roofs and make a racket! I want to write much about all I’m seeing and experiencing, but I have to make this very short today so that we can run to the internet café and send this off.

Later:
I found connecting and sending this off very difficult and was unable to today as they were just closing the store. I’ll try again tomorrow. I like the 6 other teachers I’m with and found one, Karin, teaches first grade, so we have some things in common. We share triple rooms with a little cold water that trickles out for a shower and a toilet that only periodically works, but the beds seem comfortable and there is a fan that we can use at night, to keep it a bit cooler. I’m glad to see a mosquito net for the beds.

Today we had our first visit to Gede Ruins and a fine guided tour of the area which is full of rich history. I was so excited to see in our welcoming committee—the monkeys who greet you to see if you will give them food—that I could recognize Angle! To see in real life, the monkey I’ve looked at in a small photograph was a moving experience! They are so inquisitive, agile and quick moving. After they came to greet us and found we weren’t going to give any food, they dispersed throughout the treetops. That’s where our challenge begins and tomorrow we learn to follow one around. We’ll go in pairs, which will help.

July 8

This was a very full day. Up at 6, shower (cold water only) and breakfast by 6:45 and to Gede about 7am. We followed monkeys using binoculars, trying to learn to recognize them, until 12:45. No breaks, and no sitting down during that time! My group of 3 plus two leaders volunteered to take the new group of monkeys—not the ones I had been trying to learn all this time! These monkeys will be the control group. They are not fed food by humans, are more elusive and live in an area much more remote. The fecal samples from both groups are collected and tested for stress hormones. Does provisioning (being given food by humans, or stealing food) create more stress in monkeys as they associate with humans, vying for attention from people, fighting over food they find? Will the huge amounts of data being collected show a difference in stress between the more socialized, people-friendly monkeys verses the ones that live on the fringe of Gede and have very little if any human contact?

We had a great swahili lunch( rice, meat sauce, salad, mangos) from 1-2 then back again to the field from 2:15-4:30. We went to a little market on the way home, to buy some nibbles, had dinner at 7 and a meeting until 9:30. I’ve got to now memorize the characteristics of 8 new monkeys and we will begin to follow and record behavior of a monkey tomorrow. We are all quite exhausted from all the walking over very rough terrain, breaking trails in the forest, the humidity and heat, but are up for the challenge. I go to bed hoping that I am able to get to the Post Office tomorrow and send this posting out. They are supposed to be open even on a Sunday.

## July 02, 2006

I am looking forward to meeting my teammates on the upcoming excursion. We had brief communications via email a few weeks ago introducing ourselves. All 6 are teachers like me, which will make it very cool! They are from Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, and Mississippi. As most relate that they have taught about 2-3 years, I’ll probably be the ‘mother’ of the group with my 30+ years of teaching! I just hope I can keep up with them. One of our tasks after the trip is to write at least one lesson plan using our experiences in the field, for our classroom back home. I look forward to sharing ideas with my teammates.

Five of them are women and teach science in middle or high school, one is a librarian. Only one teaches in an elementary classroom and that is the lone male. We have decided that since we’ll all be on the same plane from Nairobi to the port town of Malindi (there’s only one flight a day), we’ll recognize each other from the blue Earthwatch T-shirts we’ve all said we’ll wear in the Airport.

I am deep in the midst of making sure I’m completely ready to leave my 18-year-old son alone and in charge of the household. That’s a pretty scary thought! I’ve written all sorts of lists and instructions. This weekend I’ll ‘teach’ him how to clean the house, keep the pool in running order, take care of the two cats, and water the outside gardens and house plants. Yesterday I went to one of the make-your-own-dinners places put 12 meals in the freezer. He chose the dinners and they have pretty easy directions so I don’t think he’ll starve. Besides, he practically lives at his girlfriend’s these days, so I’m sure he’ll beg a few dinners from her family during the two weeks I’ll be gone!

It takes a certain personality to go on an excursion like this. You have to not be afraid to travel off the beaten path. I have lived in Greece for a year long ago, traveled throughout Europe with EurailPass and backpacks (again, a very long time ago!) I wouldn’t think of without a good institution behind me these days. I find this site hilarious, but a little scary as I head out next week! Try it out: You Might Be an Earthwatch Volunteer IF… We’ll see if I have some experiences to add to this list when I return.

## June 24, 2006

### Preparing for My Trip

I have just completed the school year with my second graders, cleaned out my classroom, written report cards, and am now ready to really focus on my upcoming trip! I leave July 5, which is only about 12 days away. I am getting excited, realizing that it's really going to happen, and my months of preparing for it are about over. I'd like to let you know what led up to me going to Kenya to research monkey behavior.

I teach at Villa Academy in Seattle. We are an independent Catholic school, preschool through 8th grade, with about 400 students. I have taught there 8 years. Part of our second grade curriculum is a unit on Endangered Animals. The students really enjoy our work on this topic but I felt the need to bring it a bit closer to their lives and more meaningful to them. I learned about Earthwatch Institute, which conducts programs all over the world, helping animals and the environment. It has been around for 35 years doing great work, and I heard that traveling with them and working on a project was very rewarding. I also learned that they offer fellowships to teachers, which pay for the expenses of the trip outside of travel, passports, visas, etc. I applied in January and heard in early February that I had been accepted. I remember the feeling of reading that letter, "Wow, I'm going to Kenya!"

The project I will be working on is on the east coast of Kenya, along the Indian Ocean. These Sykes monkeys, which live in a forested area of ancient ruins (Gedi Ruins), are actually not endangered, though some of their relatives are threatened. They live in an area rich in tree fruits, but have been recently getting food from humans encroaching into their areas. Some they steal and some they have been fed. This appears to be causing aggression and competition in the hoarding or protecting of their food stores. Our job (myself and 6 other teachers from all over the US) is to record the behavior of certain females (they are the matriarchs of the troop), and to then see if they are showing signs of stress. The scientists that lead our program will also be collecting and testing fecal samples to see if stress hormones are present. They want to find out if these monkeys (a type of guenon) have behavioral changes, because of this provisioning, that affect their health.

Whew! All this sounds very scientific, and actually I tried my best to 'translate' into easier terms all the literature I got from the lead investigators. For my second grade students the easiest way for me to explain the work (before I even get there and really don't even know myself!) is to say that I am helping scientists learn what happens to monkeys', and maybe even humans' health, when they are stressed over something like food sources. We hope to learn how to help them before they become endangered.

My work thus far has been to learn all I can about Kenya, read some books and literature, watch videos, and to begin to memorize the faces and physical characteristics of about 9 of the female monkeys I'll need to recognize. That's the hardest part so far! I've been practicing with an on-line Monkey Quiz, made by our Principal Investigator, Steffen Foerster. Go ahead and try it and see how you do-I only got 7 of 9 right when I tried it and I've got to really practice!

I secured my plane tickets long ago, renewed my passport, got my visa for Kenya, got all my shots and medications to take along (malaria etc.) and have recently been trying to get in better physical shape. We will need to be able to walk about 3 miles carrying a day backpack, binoculars to our faces, with hiking boots on, long pants and sleeves (for protection from sun, insects and snakes!) in very hot, humid weather. Today I walked Green Lake and only got a few strange looks as I wore my boots, backpack and binoculars around my neck. I guess I looked like a tourist. I keep my binoculars by the kitchen window and frequently pretend that the squirrels and crows are monkeys and I need to follow their movements in the trees and on the ground.

My big question is: does closely following every movement of a stressed monkey, following them all day, make them more stressed? Maybe that should be MY hypothesis!

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