Native yellow sunflowers in a field
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Scavenger Hunt at Blue Mounds State Park

Note: The 2022 Scavenger Hunt Season is now closed.

You are welcome to use this scavenger hunt, but there are no more weekly drawings.

Welcome! You are tasked with finding up to 22 "items" from these categories:

  • Mushrooms/Lichens
  • Birds
  • Amphibians/Reptiles
  • Wildflowers
  • Mammals
  • Trees
  • Arthropods

Special thanks to our hunt sponsor

Logo for Friends of Blue Mounds include three hikers heading towards the rocky cliffs in the background Friends of Blue Mounds State Park.

Happy scavenging!

Note: Icon below shows # of entries at this park for the year.
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1 / 22

ARTIST'S CONK

Appearance: Semi-circle with brown top and pure white underside.
Found: On tree trunks of hardwood trees and some conifers.
CAUTION: Never eat any mushroom unless knowledgeable.

photos: Cyndy Sims Parr/FlickrCC
George Chernilevsky/Public domain
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2 / 22

ELEGANT SUNBURST LICHEN

Appearance: Rich red-orange rosettes with radiating fingerlike lobes.
Found: Common on rocky shores. Found on every continent except Australia.
Fun Fact: Thrives under bird perches where it absorbs nitrogen from poop.

photo: Björn S.../WikimediaCC
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3 / 22

RIM LICHENS

Appearance: Pale white-green-yellow with waxy surface. Inner area forms cup-like bodies with yellowish centers.
Found: Forms like a crust on rocks.

photo: PJason Hollinger/WikimediaCC
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Next: Birds >

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4 / 22

MEADOWLARK

Appearance: Yellow underside with a bold black necklace.
Found: Perched on posts singing loudly.

photo: John Carrel/FlickrCC
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5 / 22

AMERICAN GOLDFINCH

Appearance: Brilliant yellow with black wings and cap.
Found: In areas with thistle plants and usually in small flocks.

photo: Mdf / WikiMedia CC
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6 / 22

GREAT BLUE HERON

Appearance: Large bird with long legs, neck, and bill.
Found: Wading along shorelines or flying low over water.

photo: Alpinekid / Wikimedia CC
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< Mushrooms       Reptiles >

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7 / 22

AMERICAN TOAD

Color: Brown, olive green, or reddish.

Found: Near water or moist areas.

Toads are amphibians that start life as tadpoles then emerge onto dry land as tiny toadlets about the length of a fingernail.

photo: National Park Service
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8 / 22

PAINTED TURTLE

Color: Red-orange bottom shell (appears painted on) and black-olive upper shell. Yellow stripes on neck.
Found: On logs in lakes.

These rather adorable reptiles are docile and have no teeth.

photo: Steven Katovich / Bugwood.org CC
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9 / 22

SKINK

Size: 5-8 inches.
Color:
Shiny black, brown, or green with stripes.
Found: Along stream banks or grasslands and rocky areas.
MN has 3 species of skink, that look similar

photo: Pixahive
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< Birds       Flowers >

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10 / 22

BLUE VERVAIN

Blooms: June - September Plant is 1-3 feet tall.
Found: In sunny, wet ditches and shores.
Petals: Flowers are on spikes 2-5 inches tall. They attract bumblebees and other important pollinators.

photo: Andrew C / Wikimedia CC
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11 / 22

PURPLE CONEFLOWER

Blooms: June - October
Found: In sunny fields.
Appearance: Tall flower with 15-20 pink-purple petals swirling around a reddish-brown center.

photos: Pixabay
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12 / 22

COMMON MILKWEED

Blooms: June - August
Commonly Found: Along shores and wood edges.
Petal Color: Pink or white.
Fun Fact: Monarchs lay their eggs soley on milkweed.

photo: USFWS
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< Amphibians & Reptiles      Mammals >

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13 / 22

THIRTEEN-LINED GROUND SQUIRREL

Long body with 13 stripes on back. Found scurrying along ground or darting into its underground home.

photo: Marit & Toomas Hinnosaar / FlickrCC
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14 / 22

CHIPMUNK

They are very active and inquisitive and find a home in hollow logs, tree cavities, or underground dens where they store piles of food.

photo: AndiW / WikiMedia CC
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15 / 22

WHITETAIL DEER

One of the largest mammals in MN yet camouflaged and stealthy. Sleeps in different spot each night. Only males grow antlers.

photos: Justin Pruden / P&TC photo contest
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< Flowers       Trees >

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16 / 22

BUR OAK

Leaf: 7-9 rounded lobes with deep and shallow notches. Tips large and wavy.
Fruit: Acorn with fringe around cup. These feed many wildlife.
Tree Form: Relatively short trunk with heavy, sprawling branches

photos: MnDNR
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17 / 22

EASTERN COTTONWOOD

Leaves: Triangular.
Bark: Light gray on young trees and dark gray and rough on older trees.
Fruit: Fluffy, cottony catkins that disperse in wind in May - June.

photos: MnDNR
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18 / 22

BITTERNUT HICKORY

Leaf: 7-11 narrow leaflets with pointed tips and fine-toothed edge.
Bark: Light gray-brown, smooth when young, then lightly textured shallow and narrow fissures with age.
Fruit: Round nut is too bitter to eat but used in smoking foods.

photos: MnDNR
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< Mammals      Arthropods >

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19 / 22

SPIDERWEB

Often invisible until the sun hits it just right. Spiders create these fantastic contraptions to catch prey. The silk is made in glands on the spider's abdomen. Many spiders will eat their own web each day and rebuild a new one the next day.

photo: Aaron Kostko/P&TC Photo Contest
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20 / 22

DRAGONFLIES / DAMSELFLIES

Appearance: 140 species in MN come in a rainbow of colors.
Dragonfly: Bigger and keep wings spread out when resting.
Damselfly: Smaller and close their wings when resting.
Fun Fact: They can fly upside down, backward, and turn 360° on a dime.

photos: John Wright / Flickr CC; Jim Johnson / iNaturalist CC; Wayne Fidler / iNaturalist CC
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21 / 22

SWALLOWTAIL BUTTERFLY

Color: Yellow with black outline or black with yellow marks.
Shape: Large wings with a set of tails at the end.
Found: Among wildflowers and along rivers, creeks and fields.
Fun Fact: In addition to eating flower nectar they also eat dead animals, dung and urine.

photos: James St. John/WikimediaCC
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< Trees      Write-In >

22 / 22

WHAT OTHER INTERESTING THINGS DID YOU FIND?

Fill in the following information to be entered in our weekly drawing for a $20 gift card to Minnesota State Parks, which will be mailed to the winner.

You may also opt to receive this 4"x 4" window cling with dots showing each Minnesota State Park.

state of mn with dots for each state park

 

Please note: An adult must fill in the information for anyone age 12 and under.

Please mail me this window cling and more info about Parks & Trails Council of MN

Your score is