School of the Wild Wraps with a Visit from the Drury Outdoors Team

The fifth and sixth graders began their final day of School of the Wild ’22 with a special visit from the Drury Outdoors Team. Mark Drury, Wade Robinson, Perry Battin, and Carson Brandt joined together as guest speakers last Friday morning.

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Mark Drury leads the School of the Wild morning conversation.

Two main ideas headlined the outdoor discussion. Mark Drury reminded everyone that we are fortunate to live in beautiful Decatur County. Southern Iowa’s scenic mix of rolling farmland and timber provides not only great hunting grounds, but a great place to live. Secondly, Drury shared a practice that all students had been working on this week. The Drury team works to leave every place they visit better than they find it. This idea perfectly connects to the RED Way efforts students and staff make in the parks of removing litter and respecting the local parks.

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Wade Robinson and Perry Battin address the fifth and sixth grade School of the Wild students.

Conservation was also a key message as Drury discussed caring for the land. Perry Battin shared conservation practices such as timber stand improvement and creating animal habitat through hinging trees and planting food plots. The Drury team discussed their conservation routines and practices that allow them to continue successfully hunting. Wade Robinson shared details of land management such as crops and fertilization.

The conservation message was echoed through Drury’s description of the HUSH (Help Us Stop Hunger) program. HUSH allows hunters to donate harvested deer to local lockers. The meat is provided to Iowa food banks for distribution to families in need.

Carson Brandt, Drury Outdoors photographer, covered the presentation, but took time to stop and offer photography tips. He described the importance of framing the shot and finding the correct lighting.

The Drury Team shared their very own, unassisted owl hoot locator calls. Mark Drury and Wade Robinson’s barred owl calls and Perry Battin’s screech owl call entertained the crowd. Drury then led students in a few hoots of their own.

The morning talk also included many topics such as photosynthesis, the soil cycle, predator and prey relationships, and ecosystem balance. Students were engaged in every question and detail of the conversation. The Drury team also answered many student questions. Throughout the discussion, students were awarded gear such as hats, video cameras, animal calls and other various outdoor items.

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Fifth grade students show off their new hats.

Lastly, connection was made to idea that we all feel better when we get outside. Drury stated, “You can’t have a bad day outside. When you are feeling bad, get outside!”

The Central Decatur fifth and sixth grade students and teachers wish to extend great thanks to the Drury Outdoors Team. Their generous visit was a highlight of the week for many students. Hunting season is a busy time of year for the Drury crew, yet they graciously met with CD’s fifth and sixth grade students. Their enthusiasm for sharing the outdoors made them a welcome and popular guest at School of the Wild.

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Mark Drury shared a shed with a fifth grade student.