18-Apr-2022

The Science Of Spring!

Guess what it's finally spring where we live I, love spring because it's, finally, warm enough to get outside and go on a hike squeaks, love spring, because he can play soccer again. Do you hear that that's? Another thing I love about spring, the songbirds come back out and start singing a squeak. Do you remember when we learned? Why birds sing, hi, there, squeaks and I were just outside bird-watching. And there are so many kinds of birds. Some like the Northern Cardinal can sing beautiful songs.

Just listen, we call birds that sing like these songbirds, lots of birds sing for different reasons. And for songbirds like Cardinals, singing is an important way for them to talk to all other Cardinals will chirp and hitter all year long. But in the spring, they bring out their loudest and prettiest songs.

Why do they sing so much in the spring, they're, getting ready to raise their babies like most animals? You know, Cardinals are usually either a boy called a male or a girl called a female, and they're. Pretty easy to tell apart male Cardinals are bright red and female Cardinals are brown and both male and female Cardinals sing, often for different reasons.

But during the spring, they both sing much more than they typically do you see in the springtime Cardinals are getting ready to build a nest lay eggs and raise little baby birds, but they can't do it alone. They need to find a mate. Another Cardinal to help them feed and protect their babies. A male Cardinal wants to become a dad. So when spring comes. Around, he typically starts looking for a female mate to have and raise babies with he'll start singing and hope that a funeral Cardinal will hear a song, but showing a female Cardinal that he'll be a good. Dad takes a lot of work female Cardinals want to find a mate, who's strong and smart who to find lots of food and who can protect their babies from other animals that might want to eat them.

So the male Cardinal has to show that he's tough enough to protect his new family. And the best way to do this. Is just sing loudly by singing loudly, a male Cardinal says, Here, I, am, and I'm not afraid of anything he knows that other Cardinals can hear him. But there are other types of animals listening to ones like hawks or cats that might want to eat him. So his loud song shows that he isn't even afraid of getting eaten male Cardinals won't, even try to sing louder than other males who might be nearby to prove that they're the toughest bird around tough enough to be a great dad now to call out to female. Birds male Cardinals sing, a special song called a mating call. This song is different from his normal song.

It's meant just for the female a female that's nearby will want to see which brave male is singing his mating call. So she can decide if she wants to raise her babies with him if she likes his song she'll, let him fly over, and they'll pair up for the spring now it's, not just the males that sing female Cardinals will also sing more in the spring. Two females, learn different songs than the males. And scientists are still trying to learn what the females are saying, maybe someday we'll be able to understand everything.

These amazing birds are saying to each other until then we're just lucky that we get to enjoy their special springtime songs. Oh, it sounds like it's going to rain squeaks. A nice spring. Rain is one of my favorite things. Oh yeah, I don't.

Blame you buddy, I. Guess I wouldn't like rain very much. If I was a robot either well, we don't have to go outside, but let's, take a look at the time. We learned about why it rains when you're thirsty, nothing is better than a pleasant cool, drink of water. Oh, and it looks like my plan could use a drink of water, to do you ever stop to think about where our water comes from sure when you get a drink of water, it might come from a faucet or a bottle and I give my flower here water from a watering can, but you know what the water that comes out of the faucet. And the watering can may once have been part of a cloud or a snowflake, or even the ocean, awesome.

Right and it's because of something called the water cycle. Now a cycle is a set of steps that repeat over and over when you get to the last step in a cycle, you go back to the beginning and go through the steps again, for example, every year there are four seasons, spring, summer, fall and winter. And when winter is over its time for spring again, we go back to the beginning of the cycle in the water cycle. All the water on earth goes through a set of steps that repeat over and over let's start with.

A step in our water cycle, where we open up our umbrellas that's, right, squeaks rain. Rain is water that falls from the sky, some rain water soaks into the ground. But a lot of it flows into little creeks and streams and then ends up in rivers lakes and eventually the ocean. And then something fascinating happens. Some of this water changes. You might have noticed that after it rains. Some water is left on the ground like in puddles that you can jump in.

But what happens to all that water? It seems. Like it's there one day, but then after a little while it's gone, well that water didn't just disappear when the Sun comes out and the ground gets warm water can change into a different form. We call this form water vapor and water vapor is a gas. The air we breathe, it's a bunch of different gases mixed together and like the gases that make up air.

You can't see water vapor gas when the Sun shines on rivers lakes and oceans. Some water changes into water vapor. And then the water vapor goes up.

High very high up into the sky, and it gets pretty cold up there. So when the water vapor gets high enough, it starts to get cool. And as water vapor cools down, it changes back into little drops of liquid water. You can actually see water vapor change into water drops right at home.

All you need is a mirror or window and your mouth, put your face close to the mirror or window open your mouth, nice and wide and breathe out what happens. The glass gets foggy that's because there's water vapor in your warm. Breath, and when the water vapor in your breath touches the cool glass, it changes into teeny, tiny droplets a lot of the droplets together make the glass look cloudy and up in the sky, a lot of water droplets together make clouds when there's a lot of water in a cloud. The cloud starts to get darker white, fluffy clouds start to turn gray. And as the clouds get grayer, the water in them gets heavier when the water gets too heavy.

It falls right out of the clouds as rain and rain is where we started in. The cycle we made it all the way back to the beginning. Now, the water cycle can start all over again, all the water on a great big earth goes through this same cycle over and over.

It falls to the ground is rain or snow. And soon the water ends up in a river lake or ocean from there. It heats up and turns into vapor. And when the vapor rises into the sky and cools off, it comes right back down.

So the water that you drink and the water that's in my watering can right now might once have been part of a. Raindrop that fell into the ocean on the other side of the world think about that the next time you take a drink now that the weather is warmer. We can't wait to start planting our garden. We grow carrots lettuce all kinds of flowers. And they all start from tiny little seeds, you're, right, squeaks. It is pretty amazing. Oh, hey, guys, squeaks and I are checking out our plant, and they look great it's almost hard to believe that these beautiful flowers and plants came from the teeny tiny seeds. We put in.

The pots just a few weeks ago, you might be familiar with a little package of seeds that you used to grow flowers or vegetables in your garden, or maybe the sunflower seeds that you find in your snack mix, but did you know that popcorn Carl's, beans, peas, acorns and rice are also seeds. Well, one of our friends five-year-old Dmitri wrote in to ask us. How does the sea grow into a plant thanks for asking Dmitri? First of all seeds, come in lots of different shapes and sizes, but they're all made of three. Parts an outer shell called the seed coat, a tiny baby plant that's inside the seed called the embryo and some plant food for the embryo called endosperm.

The seed coat has an important job. It covers the entire seed protecting the little baby plant inside and keeping it from drying out. The seed coat also has super sensing powers. It has special chemicals in it that can tell when the seed is in the right place to start growing. For example, the sunflower seeds and the pumpkin seeds in your trail, mix. Since that it's not safe to grow after all thieves, can't grow, and they're, surrounded by raisins and chocolate chips. So while the seeds are in a bag or in your hands, it's like they're asleep, the seeds are still alive, but they're dormant or inactive.

Some seeds can stay like this for hundreds or even thousands of years. Great question, squeaks to get started every seat needs water, the right temperature and the right amount of light once the seed has these three things like when is planted in some. Nice wet soil, the embryo or baby plant gets the signal to start growing for plants. This growing process is called germination first the seed coat let's, some water through to the embryo.

But the embryo requires more than just water if it's going to grow good thing, there's, a bunch of plant food, right there inside the seed until the plant can make its own food from sunlight, which it will need leaves to do. It relies on the endosperm for energy it's like the little baby plant has its own backpack. Of snacks, so the embryo keeps growing and taking in more water until the seed coat cracks open.

And the embryo kicks out a kind of foot, but not at all like my foot. The first part of the plant to come out of the seed is the root. The root always grows downward, no matter what way the seed is planted. So you can actually tell which way is up, and which way is down. So the root pushes down deeper and deeper into the soil, looking for more water and minerals to feed the baby plant. Once the plant is all.

Grown up those deep roots will have another job they'll help keep the plant from falling over or blowing away in the wind. But soon after the first baby root finds its way into the dirt. Another part of the seed pops out this time in the opposite direction, a chute, which has the stem of the plant and a few leaves pushes its way up towards the sunlight. Once the chute breaks through the soil to the open air above.

We say that it's sprouted. Now, the plant doesn't need to endosperm anymore, because it can. Make its own food from sunlight with enough water and sunlight and the right temperature. The young plant will continue to grow getting bigger and growing more leaves until it to the don't plant, and it can produce seeds of its own one more thing that's really cool and kind of gross about spring is that all kinds of bugs start showing up pretty much anywhere. You look, you can find bees spiders centipedes worms and lots more, in fact, squeaks and I went on a bug safari in our backyard, not too long ago.

Check it out we're, looking around the yard to see what kinds of things we can find, and I know of a great place to find lots of cool stuff that you might not otherwise see under rocks now on the underside of a rock might not seem like a place where you and I would want to live it's, dark it's kind of chilly, and it's, usually pretty damp, but it's, the perfect place to look for insects, spiders slugs and other animals for lots of reasons for one thing there's, lots to eat under there rotting. Leaves old grass and other kinds of plants, make good food for small animals like insects. And then other creatures like spiders eat insects. So there's typically plenty of food to go around another reason that life's so good under a rock you and I might like sunshine, but lots of other animals like it, dark and damp the moisture under rocks keeps animals like worms from drying out.

And the darkness makes it easier for them to hide from hungry predators. So if you want to find some cool creepy, crawlies. Look no further than your nearest Rock. But here are a couple rock. Flipping tips. First, look for rocks that are in a quiet out-of-the-way place. You also want them to be kind of big, but not too big.

Otherwise, you won't be able to turn them over. So look some rocks that are about the size of a grownup shoe it's also better to look under rocks that have dirt or grass under them is that have cement or other rocks and be careful when you turn it over if you're lucky enough to find something under there. You can look at it, but don't, touch them. Okay, ready. Let's. See what we can find under this. One, whoa, look at all the living things, let's write down what we can see before they all have a chance to run and hide.

Okay. The first thing I see are insects, lots of them. There are lots of kinds of insects that live under rocks. But some of the most common ones are crickets ants and beetles. One of my favorite things about insects is that they can change into different forms as they grow up, an insect life. Begins as an egg and sometimes an insect egg hatches into what are called larvae. A caterpillar is a kind of insect larva.

Then the larva goes through some huge changes and becomes an adult. Oh, and look I. See some beetle eggs under a rock too. They look a little like rice.

And you see those things there, those things that look like short, squishy worms, those really aren't worms at all there are grubs. A grub is a beetle larva. Just like a caterpillar will someday be a moth or a butterfly. This grub. Will someday be a beetle and see some adult beetles - I also see some spiders.

They look and act kind of like insects, but spiders have eight legs and only two body segments and spider eggs don't hatch into larvae. They hatch into tiny spiders called spider lings. Oh look, there's.

Some slimy, looking things stuck to the bottom of the rock. These definitely aren't insects or spiders they're animals called slugs. A slug looks like a snail without a shell.

They don't have any legs instead slugs have a huge. Muscle called the foot that helps them move and slugs make slime lots of it. In fact, slugs leave a trail of slime behind them.

Wherever they go this slime helps keep the slug from getting too dry Wow. There were a lot of things under that rock. Spiders insects.

And slugs are just a few of the things that you might find under a rock. If you turn over a rock in your neighborhood, you might find centipedes snails or even salamanders now that you know what to expect when you turn over a rock, are you ready. To explore I.

Am come on squeaks. Let's, go find another Rock all right squeaks. We can go out to play soon, but there's, one more spring activity that we need to do first spring, cleaning. The fort is a mess it's. Okay.

Buddy we'll be done before, you know it. And then we can go play on the playground. What are your favorite things about spring? We'd love to hear about them so grab a grown-up and leave a comment down below or email us to kids at sci show comm. Alright, squeaks let's get to sweeping you.