Our Stories

Ecologist Dr. Reuven Walder Explains his Work with Birds in Alaska to Third Graders

February 18, 2015 by Ari P (’20) (Students) Avital P (’20) (Students) Benny H (’20) (Students)

In science, we studied ecology.  We were studying living and non-living things.  Our friend’s father, Dr. Reuven Walder, came to talk about birds to us.  He is an ecologist.  He spent time in the Aleutian Islands which are in Alaska.  He went to an island that had thousands of different species of birds, but the island had a problem.  People were bringing foxes to the island.  They wanted to use the foxes’ fur to sell.  This was a problem because the foxes would eat the birds. It hurt the bird population.  Dr. Walder told us that they got rid of all the foxes. Then they studied the birds to see if the population would regrow.  He watched the same birds to track what they did over time.  He watched them lay eggs to see if the eggs hatched and the birds flew away.  The eggs were on steep cliffs.  It was amazing to hear how the birds took care of the eggs to make sure that their eggs were safe.

Dr. Walder showed us pictures of the birds and their eggs.  We also saw pictures of sea otters, and the place where he slept and stayed on the island.  The ecologists slept in a cabin that they found and renovated. They also had fresh food delivered about once a month while they studied the birds.   His presentation made us think about all the different species of animals that we share the world with.