Kids are facing weeks at home during the coronavirus pandemic, so one wildlife educator is taking her wildlife programs online through Facebook Live and continuing to educate children about birds of prey and wildlife conservation.
Christine’s Critters, Inc., run by Christine Peyreigne, is a non-profit organization based in Weston, Connecticut that rescues, rehabilitates, and educates about birds of prey and reptiles, gives new meaning to ‘the show must go on.’
Virtual Show Must Go On
School closures began mounting and their programs were canceled.
So Christine and her Mom, Betsy, took their school programs online so that the kids at home can see the presentations broadcast live from their living room.
Schools rely on these types of wildlife programs to serve as science and ecology lessons.
Now that kids are home from school, that means an absence of many outlets for fun, and Christine’s programs give the kids something to look at, learn more about, and ask questions.
And the programs are things they can share together while being apart.
The hour Christine is broadcasting gives work-from-home parents a much-needed break.
Or they can enjoy the show with their kids.
Engaging Virtual Audience
During the one-hour broadcast, airing Monday through Friday at 11am EST, Christine and Betsy introduce a critter to the audience, explaining the animal’s story to an engaging virtual audience.
If she’s presenting a bird of prey, Christine uses a birdsong identifier to play that bird’s call for viewers so they can learn to identify their calls in the wild.
The moment Christine introduces a new bird of prey to the audience, viewers send a flurry of hearts floating across the screen.
Viewers get to meet Christine’s resident education ambassador birds, and reptiles.
Salsa, the American Kestrel.
Ariel, the Broad-winged Hawk.
Magma, the red-phase Eastern Screen Owl.
Equinox, the Peregrine Falcon.
Cypress, the Barred Owl.
Amelia, the Red-Tailed Hawk.
Mr. Higgins, the Northern Saw-whet owl.
Lemon Drops, the Burmese Python.
Priscilla, the Hog Island Python.
Just to name a few.
Viewers can submit their questions live, and Christine and Betsy answer them.
Wildlife Educator Provides a Sense of Connection
At the end of the presentation, Christine asks viewers to write out ten things they learned about the bird of prey and reptiles they saw that day as a homework assignment.
And then draw pictures of their favorite animal and send it to her.
Kids comply, submitting their drawings, and Christine posts them on Christine’s Critter’s Facebook page.
Each drawing is adorable and is proof Christine is educating kids through virtual programs.
If the presentation focuses on owls, Christine ends the program by asking the audiences to listen for owls at night.
The one-hour program is a fantastic show packed with and show and tell that keeps everyone’s attention.
Be sure to follow Christine’s Critters on Facebook to get notified and upcoming programs.
And tune in every weekday at 11am to meet some fascinating critters.
Don’t worry if you miss the live broadcast, the program is recorded so you can watch it later.
Support Christine Critters and Wildlife Educators
Thankfully because of Christine’s Critters and their ‘show must go on’ can-do attitude, viewers are enjoying the wildlife programs and feeling a sense of connection with each other.
It’s important to note that Christine’s Critters is a non-profit.
The programs we see online for free are held at schools to generate program fees helping to pay for the birds of prey under Christine’s care.
Christine’s Critters cares for 23 resident birds with hearty appetites and expensive vet bills.
And helps more than 250 rehab patients recovering from injuries that return to the wild.
These types of organizations rely on funding through donations and program fees, so lost school programs have a significant impact.
To get involved, donate, send needed supplies from Christine’s Critters’ Amazon wishlist, or just volunteer go to https://www.christinescritters.org/get_involved.