Scouts Earn Wetland Merit Badges

When I was a girl scout, my grandmother sometimes led my troop on field trips into the woods and wetlands in midcoast Maine. She taught us how to make “sit-upons,” which consisted of a stack of newspapers inside a trash bag; the sit-upons kept our butts from getting wet when we sat (inevitably) on the wet ground to hear Gramma talk about the wonder of nature, and all about her experiences as a girl scout. But most of my scout troop’s patches concerned arts & crafts and community service, not nature. I don’t recall ever earning a nature badge, although I spent most of my time outside, learning about wildlife and conservation, playing in creeks or building fairy houses in the roots of trees. My brother was a boy scout. I recall that he earned outdoorsy badges.

Today’s Boy Scouts strive to earn badges for projects they do in wetlands. For example, boys can restore a wetland, study birds, learn about conservation, study forestry or insects, etc. in order to earn an Environmental Science badge, Fish & Wildlife Management badge, Soil & Water Conservation badge, Bird Study badge, or for their final Eagle Scout project.

These New Hampshire boys earned their badges by building a bridge in wetlands:http://www.cabinet.com/merrimackjournal/merrimacknews/637153-308/five-scouts-earn-rank-of-eagle.html These Southwestern boy scouts worked on a river restoration project: http://www.southwestcoloradowetlands.org/Sample_Projects/Sample_
projects_main.html
 This boy completed an Eagle Scout project,blazing a trail to provide public access to a wetland in Alabama:
trails_for_eagle_sco.html
In Iowa, local scouts teamed up to work on wetland projects:http://www.ag.iastate.edu/centers/iawetlands/
cases/Ftdodge.html
http://blog.al.com/live/
2010/01/teen_cuts_

Since I was a girl scout, many new patches have been created. Girls can earn a Water Drop Patch by learning about watersheds, water quality and completing a related project.http://www.epa.gov/adopt/patch/

Everett Scout is an all-around golden girl
http://www.heraldnet.com/article/20100927/NEWS01/709279951

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