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Students become one with nature

Fisheries instructor Mike Nelson and Mr. Salo's NY Mills 5th grade class.

Over 450 members of a native species merged on Walker Lake Hatchery south of Basswood last week.

Genus: homo. Species: fifth grade sapiens.

Typical of the species, these bipedal visitors had erect body carriages, highly developed brains capable of abstract reasoning, language, introspection, and problem solving. They excelled at drinking chocolate milk, were social by nature and adept at utilizing systems of communication for self-expression (a little too well), the exchange of ideas, and organization. Though their organizational skills had to be honed occasionally by the more mature members of the species, teachers who accompanied them.

It's a good thing these highly evolved and intelligent creatures were invited guests.

They were part of the 20th Annual Otter Tail County Conservation Days April 27, 29 and 30.

Students from area schools, including Perham and New York Mills, role played the parts of plants, trees, fish and pollution while engaging in hands-on, educational activities involving recycling, water quality, forestry, soil, fisheries and fighting their natural enemies; invasive species.