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Would you let your kid pick up a dead worm? - Page 2

post #21 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post

Yeah, I would. I would probably draw the line at dead mammals-- I worry about disease. I don't know if there's much scientific basis to that worry. I just know that a dead worm doesn't squick me out like a dead deer or chipmunk or squirrel does. Oh, and dead fish are gross, because they stink.

You see, I'm not terribly objective about this. It would all be based on a momentary "does this make my skin crawl?" impulse. Dead worms, in my experience, are mostly dry and odorless, so they don't bother me.


That.  Dead bugs don't bother me nearly as much as dead animals. 
 

 

post #22 of 43

... i take it you don't take your kids fishing?  ;)

if you're speaking of earthworms (like when they die in the rain and lie there limply on the sidewalk) then no one's going to catch anything from them.  They're pretty clean, and very good for the earth-- alive and dead. 

i could maybe understand some hesitation if your kid's not old enough to distinguish, say, a worm that is in a pile of dog poo (sorry, sorry) from an earthworm.  but if otherwise, i'd even suggest that's a great jumping off point to do a little research on the thing and stimulate that instinct-- look at pictures online, and read what they do.  you can even make an earthworm farm if you're so inclined, in a terrarium style setup. 

my kid's too little to know the dog-poo worm from the earth worm, but i've encouraged her to touch live ones already (earthworms that is).. and we pick up little dead beetles, etc. sometimes to admire them, too.  i wouldn't put 'dead things' in the category of hands-off, but i'm usually there (or dh is) to guide good choices. 

post #23 of 43
Thread Starter 

I've given it a bit more thought, and apart from maggot-filled things, I think my natural response is "ok, touch it."  Sadly, I think the thing that stopped me was that someone else was out on the sidewalk nearby and I worried that they'd think I was a "bad" mom if I let her touch a dead worm.  I hate that I actually stop to consider those things...

Oh, and hildare- thank you!  I LOVE the idea of a worm farm- I know my daughter will be super thrilled with one of those!! 

post #24 of 43
Sure. But like others have said, dead birds/fish/mammals would be a no...though I might let 'em poke at those with a stick.
post #25 of 43

We poke at things with sticks, like others have said, if it is really gross or if it is big. But ds picks up all manner of bugs both dead and alive. By the time he is done with them they seem to all end up dead anyway...

 

Either way I wouldn't care about touching a dead worm unless it was really disgusting looking...like when they dry up and get all crusty, ew.....but after a rain storm or something that would be fine.

 

we used to have a frog that lived in our garden and he was our free range pet lol....we spent all summer chasing him and catching him, putting him in various containers for observation and then letting him back out. Ds is not a particularly fastidious handwasher and he was in and out of the house constantly, but no one got sick from handling the frog and we learned all about frog life cycles and related science. It was a very "unschooling" ish type thing and ds loved it. I could totally see the same learning opportunity happening with a dead worm.

post #26 of 43

Dead worm?  Sure.  Dead bird or mammal?  Probably, if it's not too disgusting.  I've let the kids pick up dead birds before, and I think maybe they've also had the chance to handle things like moles, shrews, or mice - just picking them up by the tail for a look, or feeling the fur.  There really isn't much risk of disease transmission in most cases, especially if you're not poking around inside the animal but only touching its outside.

post #27 of 43
Quote:

Originally Posted by waiting2bemommy View Post

 

Either way I wouldn't care about touching a dead worm unless it was really disgusting looking...like when they dry up and get all crusty, ew.....but after a rain storm or something that would be fine.


When I was four, I had a dried worm collection. hide.gif

 

Even now, I actually find the dried out ones much less icky then the umm... fully hydrated dead worms.

post #28 of 43

Sure, but only because either there aren't worm killing horrible diseases that can be passed on to humans, or I'm too naive to know about them. ;-)  But no to all the other dead animals.

post #29 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by petey44 View Post

.

Oh, and hildare- thank you!  I LOVE the idea of a worm farm- I know my daughter will be super thrilled with one of those!! 


i got the idea from my second grade teacher-- she had a carboy with soil in it and earthworms inside.. you could see the trails they made in the soil.  I think they get most nutrition from the soil but they will make compost from scraps if you drop things on top.  so cool!

 

post #30 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelmendi View Post




When I was four, I had a dried worm collection. hide.gif

 

Even now, I actually find the dried out ones much less icky then the umm... fully hydrated dead worms.

when I worked at a commercial plant nursery I would regularly waste time by walking around and picking up half petrified worms who were dying from being in the sun. I would dump them in a nice moist flower pot and cover them with soil so they had a chance...This was when I was 20, I love worms. They are super important and if you have ever been on a night crawler hunting trip after a nice rain storm you know how fun it is to try and catch those buggers...ah childhood memories flooding back.
 

 

post #31 of 43

Hm. Depends on the age of the kid and the personality and where else we're headed. Older child, probably, unless we were going to be out a long time and no where to wash up. Younger child, no, because he's going to stick either the worm (less likely) or his hands into his mouth within 2 minutes of putting the worm down. Same thing for live worms actually. DD goes fishing, DS is not old enough yet.

 

I would say no to vertebrates though. Too many potential contaminants. 

post #32 of 43
I hate worms. I appreciate their contribution to the health of our planet but they seriously creep me out.

But yeah, DD has picked 'em up, more than once. Whatcha gonna do? And, let's be honest, she's touched a lot of things that are more germy and disgusting than dead worms. orngtongue.gif
post #33 of 43

Sure :) A live one / dead one ... whatever.

post #34 of 43

I would of let her, but I would of made her wash her hands afterwards.

post #35 of 43

Of course! I used to find them in pants or jacket pockets when mine were young. ;)

post #36 of 43

Yes.  And dead mice and moles and the ocasional bird or rabbit.  It really is amazing to move a bird's wing back and forth and see how the joints work.  To look at the whole digestive track of a freshly killed squirrel is more interesting when you can compare it to that of a chicken's because your've been involved int the processing of your own chickens that you eat, kwim? 

 

I do not let my children touch mushrooms, because I don't what is poisonous and what is not.  I don't like mushrooms much so I don't plan to learn either.

 

And fwiw, we usually bury any animal that we've dissected, explored or otherwise seen after its death, out of respect.

post #37 of 43

Yep!

post #38 of 43

Yep!  (Sorry about the double post!  Not sure how that happened, or how to delete it!)

post #39 of 43

When a naturalist or scientist pick up dead things they usually know what killed it or they are wearing gloves.  

 

A dead worm or insect I would have little problems with, mammals/birds/reptiles we would explore with our eyes or a barrier.  Reptiles can carry salmonella.  

 

I did not use anti-bacterial lotions that often but this would be time it would be nice to have a small bottle.  

post #40 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marsupialmom View Post

When a naturalist or scientist pick up dead things they usually know what killed it or they are wearing gloves.  



As a former wildlife biologist, I'd say that naturalists and scientists are generally a lot more relaxed about handling dead things that most of the people posting on this thread, and are actually pretty likely to pick them up without gloves or without knowing exactly what killed them.  (But they also have a fairly good idea what the possible risks are, and whether a particular dead thing is likely to pose a risk.)

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