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The Firewood Pest Passport activity was developed to educate youth and their families about the risk that moving firewood poses to forests. We piloted the activity in Marin County in spring 2011; the activity was then reproduced in San Diego County (July 2011), at Plumas National Forest (October 2011), and at the Bay Area Science Festival (November 2011).
We presented a version of our Firewood Pest Passport activity (photos, right) at the Bay Area Science Festival on Sunday, November 6, 2011, in San Francisco. Four forest pests were matched with a national park they would threaten if they were introduced there by people bringing in firewood.
Example passport handouts and an overview of setting up the activity are available for download. If you have questions about this activity or are interested in conducting it in your area, please contact Janice Alexander.
At main exhibit table, distribute passport booklets and bug stickers to each participant.
Participants visit each "park," leaving a sticker and getting a stamp in their passport. We did four different colors so each park had its own color stamp in the passport booklet.
Participants return to main table with completed passports to get prize.
The passport program was a super hit with the kids and parents. The kids really loved the participation, passports, stamps and stickers, and the parents could pick up a Goldspotted Oak Borer (GSOB) brochure along the way. Everyone gave the project a big thumbs up!"
This work was conducted under the auspices of the California Oak Mortality Task Force, California Firewood Task Force and Goldspotted Oak Borer Education Committee. Funding was provided by a federal ARRA grant through the USDA Forest Service and CalFIRE.