MISSOULA, Mont. - The folks at Dunrovin Ranch now have an infrared camera to watch their osprey nest. Students in India will help log data at night while Missoula classes log data during the day.
"It's not a glaring light on the nest. It doesn't show as a light for them, but we can see it because it's infrared."
Mrs. Bohmler's fourth grade class is learning about a new infrared light at Dunrovin Ranch in Lolo.
Students will be spending the next few weeks collaborating with students around the world to compile observable data about the osprey.
"What I really like about it is this is actually authentic science research. It's probably going to be used to learn more about ospreys and how they sit on the nest."
That type of information is important because they're learning about animals and their environment.
"Some of my kids don't know the name of the river that is right by Harriet and Ozzy's nest, nor the one that runs through Missoula, so it's important to learn about where we live. This is one step in that direction, just learning about our place."
Suzzane Miller is the owner of Dunrovin Ranch and she says osprey are a great topic for all kids because the bird lives on nearly every continent. And really, it's all about the connections.
"It gives you a reason to talk to each other, and to understand each other. I think that worldwide, this is just an opportunity to know other kids in a completely different way."
Miller is a biologist by training, but she is an educator at heart.
"Part of what we're trying to do is get really good feedback from teachers. How can we construct projects of this nature."
The fourth graders at Cold Springs Elementary are giving pretty good feedback already.
"They are so excited. It's like 'Whoa, look at what they're doing.' Yeah, they are so excited about it."