Bountiful Birds

Estuary background image with color overlay


In this activity, students engage in a role-playing activity to model different bird beaks. Students will see how differently shaped beaks are needed by birds to acquire the many different food sources found in the different estuary habitats. They will then compare the great blue heron and osprey with other birds living in the estuaries. Students will see the different estuary habitats these birds inhabit and the adaptations the birds have evolved to help them survive in these dynamic estuary environments.

This activity has two parts:

  1. Adaptation is for the Birds
  2. Great Birds of the Estuaries

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Students should understand that:

  • Birds have basic needs for air, water, food, protection from predators, and a place in which to breed.
  • Estuary habitats, such as the salt marsh and the mangrove swamp, meet the survival needs of many birds.
  • Birds have adaptations that allow them to efficiently feed in specific estuary environments. Beaks differ in design depending on where the bird feeds and the function for which the beak is used.

Bountiful Birds: Supporting Resources

Estuary Birds


Tillamook Birds