Yesterday was a nice warm spring day so we went on a bike ride. We found a new skull in the ditch so we picked it up and brought it back home. I clean the skulls by putting them in a solution of bleach water. This just helps clean out the dirt and bugs and kills the germs.
Here is a collection of skulls that my kids have found so far. They look up in books and identify the skulls after they have found them. They try and guess what kind of animal it was first and then look them up.
The first two from left to right are raccoon skulls. The first one is a young raccoon. The bones are still fusing together. It has been chewed on quite a bit by chipmunks. The second skull is a mature raccoon. The bones have fused together and formed the ridge on top of the skull. It is in really good condition. The last one is one that we found yesterday. It is a woodchuck. It has not been chewed on but did not clean up real white. I think it has been exposed to the elements for some time.
Even when the teeth are missing you can see where the teeth were. My son was excited that the woodchuck still had it's two front teeth. And even though the color is not real white on it the skull is actually in real good condition with only a few of the smaller teeth missing. This time of year we tend to find more skulls. Animals that died over the winter are left in the fields and trails and are normally cleaned off by now!!
It just gives us an excuse to get out and exercise and combine some science lessons with it as well!!