All photographs copyright (2003-2013) by Kris H. Light

<strong>Autumn Olive berries</strong> (<em>Elaeagnus umbellata)</em><br>
Unfortunately, birds love these juicy red berries, which causes this bush to take over in many places. Raccoons will also eat these berries, it is not uncommon to find pink scat ...
Autumn Olive berries (Elaeagnus umbellata)

Unfortunately, birds love these juicy red berries, which causes this bush to take over in many places. Raccoons will also eat these berries, it is not uncommon to find pink scat (poop) in the fall! Many years ago during one of my outdoor classes, a 2nd grade boy came up to me with something in his hand. He asked, "What is this stuff, Mrs. Light?" I answered, "Bring it over to the rest of the class and we'll talk about it." He picked out a round object and asked, "What's this?" I said, "It's a wild cherry seed." Next, he picked out an oval-shaped object, "What's this?" "It's an Autumn Olive seed," I answered. Then he picked out a shiny, metallic green object and with a very skeptical tone in his voice, he frowned and slowly asked, "What's this!?" "A beetle wing", I answered nonchalantly. He then said, "What is this stuff!!!?" When I told him, "Raccoon poop!", he yelled, "Oooooh!" and pitched it into the air! I figured I shouldn't waste a good teachable moment since he already had it in his hand! :)

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