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10 interesting facts about elephants

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Like hippos and rhinos, elephants are pachyderms. These imposing animals have thick skin and heavy gait. In fact, elephants are the largest land animals on the planet. Here are ten fascinating facts about them.

1. Elephants can’t jump because they’re too heavy. Their bones would break on landing.

2. Elephant trunks are very flexible and contain up to 150,000 muscles. This essential appendage functions as a nose and arm. Elephants use their trunks to communicate, clean themselves, and gather food. However, elephants don’t eat through their trunks.

3. Elephants spend around 16 hours a day eating. They can eat more than 440 pounds of plants and drink over 26 gallons of water a day.

4. Although elephant skin is thick, it’s also very sensitive. In fact, an elephant can feel a small insect land on its back. Additionally, elephants cover their skin with mud to stay cool in the hot sun.

5. An elephant’s powerful trumpet-like call can be heard up to five miles away.

6. Contrary to popular belief, elephants aren’t afraid of mice. However, they fear ants and bees that can crawl into their trunks.

7. Elephants can swim several miles at a time. Additionally, they use their trunks as snorkels to breathe underwater.

8. Elephant feet are very sensitive and can feel ground vibrations more than six miles away.

9. Female elephants carry their young for 20 to 22 months before giving birth. That’s almost two years!

10. Like humans, elephants lose their teeth. However, elephant teeth can fall out and grow back several times.

You may be able to see an elephant at a zoo near you.

 

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Kids' Corner

Nature quiz: find the odd one out

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If you love nature, this fun quiz is for you. Try to find the odd one out in each of the following questions.

1. Which of these trees isn’t an evergreen?
A. Spruce
B. Yew
C. Poplar
D. Pine

2. Which of these mammals isn’t a rodent?
A. Beaver
B. Squirrel
C. Rabbit
D. Mouse

3. Which of these waterways isn’t a river?
A. The English Channel
B. The Seine
C. The Nile
D. The Mississippi

4. Which of these mushrooms isn’t edible?
A. Destroying angel
B. Porcini
C. Chanterelle
D. Shitake

5. Which of these constellations isn’t part of the zodiac?
A. Aries
B. Centaurus
C. Leo
D. Scorpius

6. Which of these mountain ranges isn’t in North America?
A. The Cascade Range
B. The Andes Mountains
C. The Appalachians
D. The Rockies

7. Which of these shrubs are thornless?
A. Sea buckthorn
B. Caper
C. Rhododendron
D. Rose

Answers
1-C, 2-C, 3-A, 4-A, 5-B, 6-B, 7-C

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Morse code basics

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Before the telephone and satellite communication was invented, Morse code was used to transmit messages over long distances quickly. For example, ships often used Morse code to send distress signals. Additionally, in the past, if you wanted to tell your family when your train would arrive at the station, you could send them a letter in Morse code.

What’s Morse code?
Morse code was invented by Samuel Morse and is a means of communication that uses long and short signals to transmit messages. Morse code is often sent using sound or light signals. It can also be written. For example, short signals are represented as dots and long signals as dashes:

• A =
• E =
• R =
• T =

Therefore, to communicate the letter A in Morse code, you must transmit a short sound followed by a long sound. Each letter of the alphabet has its own code, so you can easily spell words and phrases using the right combination of signals.

It’s a bit complicated, isn’t it? Fortunately, today you can simply text, email, or phone your friends. However, the Morse code is still used in military emergencies.

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Why does helium change the sound of your voice?

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Have you ever inhaled helium from a balloon? If so, you may have noticed that your voice becomes higher than usual. This is a funny and intriguing side effect. Here’s why it happens.

Your vocal cords vibrate when you speak or sing, much like the strings on a guitar. How fast the air passes through your vocal cords determines the pitch of your voice. Slow-moving air makes low-pitched sounds, while fast-moving air makes high-pitched sounds.

Helium is lighter than air. Therefore, when you inhale helium, it travels much more quickly across your vocal cords than oxygen, making your voice sound higher than normal.

Be careful
Though it’s fun to alter the pitch of your voice by inhaling helium, don’t overdo it. If you inhale too much, you could deprive your body of oxygen and faint. It’s perfectly safe to inhale small quantities of helium, but doing so repeatedly can have dangerous consequences.

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10 tips for being a good friend

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Cultivating long-lasting friendships takes time and commitment. Here are a few simple tips to help you make friends.

1. Pay attention and listen to them when they tell you something

2. Share with them

3. Keep their secrets

4. Periodically call, or video chat them

5. Never talk behind their back

6. Support and encourage them if they’re going through a tough time

7. Console them if they’re sad

8. Invite them to spend time with you

9. Celebrate important events with them like their birthday and holidays

10. Apologize if you hurt their feelings

One of the best gifts in life is friendship.

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Association game: vegetables

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Vegetables are excellent for your health and come in many colorful varieties and shapes. Try to match each clue to the correct vegetable.

1. This white vegetable is called Daikon
2. Bugs Bunny’s favorite food
3. A similar vegetable to collard greens
4. Another name for beans
5. There are summer and winter varieties of this vegetable
6. Rutabagas are from the same family as this vegetable
7. A crunchy green vegetable with lots of water
8. A dark green vegetable that looks like cauliflower
9. The leaves of this vegetable are used in salads
10. The most common varieties of this vegetable are English and Lebanese
11. Iceberg and Chinese are two varieties of this vegetable
12. A bulbous vegetable that’s said to repel vampires
13. A vegetable that’s often eaten with butter and salt
14. There are many ornamental varieties of this vegetable
15. The sweet version of a chili

A. Garlic
B. Chard
C. Broccoli
D. Carrots
E. Celery
F. Lettuce
G. Cucumber
H. Squash
I. Legumes
J. Kale
K. Corn
L. Turnip
M. Pepper
N. Radish
O. Arugula

 

 

Answers
1-N, 2-D, 3-B, 4-I, 5-H, 6-L, 7-E, 8-C, 9-O, 10-G, 11-F, 12-A, 13-K, 14-J, 15-M

 

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4 animals that can regrow body parts

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Many animals have extraordinary abilities. For example, certain species can change color or sleep with their eyes open. Here are four amazing creatures that can regrow their body parts.

1. Octopuses need eight limbs to move around and eat. Fortunately, they can regenerate lost tentacles in a matter of months.

2. Lizards can sever their own tails as a defense mechanism. A new tail will regrow within a few months.

3. Flatworms can tear themselves in half and regrow a completely new body, including a new head.

4. Spiders commonly lose legs when fighting off predators. The good news is that they can regrow their lost limbs within a few days.

In addition, male deer shed and regrow their antlers every year.

Did you know?
People can also regrow one specific part of their body. The liver, which filters blood, can partially regenerate itself.

 

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Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
Jul 1 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
…and be sure to attend our Fourth of July event!
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10:00 am A Tree-mendous Walk @ Sky Meadows State Park
A Tree-mendous Walk @ Sky Meadows State Park
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A Tree-mendous Walk @ Sky Meadows State Park
Sensory Explorers’ Trail. Join Shenandoah Chapter Master Naturalist Paul Guay and explore the rich natural history of trees along the park’s Sensory Explorers’ Trail. Discover the tips and tricks of basic tree identification and the[...]
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Declaration of Independence reading @ Warren Heritage Society
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Declaration of Independence reading @ Warren Heritage Society
On 2 July, at 11:30, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution will read the Declaration of Independence on the porch of the Archives at the Warren Heritage Society. [...]
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Settle’s Kettle @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Settle's Kettle @ Sky Meadows State Park
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The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
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6:00 pm Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
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Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
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all-day Great American Campout @ Sky Meadows State Park
Great American Campout @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Great American Campout @ Sky Meadows State Park
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6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
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Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
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