Conservancy Kids

We bring the Sonoran Desert to you!

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Welcome to Conservancy Kids!

We are so excited to have you with us on this virtual journey of inquiry and place-based learning! Right now we may be social distancing, but we're all connected by the awesomeness of science. We're junior scientists, exploring the natural world, asking questions, and making discoveries. Join us for an adventure that will take you outdoors, around the house, and into the incredible Sonoran Desert. Welcome to Conservancy Kids! We're excited to see you!

Curious as a Cat

Maybe Luke and Nicole are a little biased because they both have pet cats, but they think our Sonoran Desert felines are amazing! While Arizona has had sightings of jaguars, ocelots, and jaguarundis, bobcats and mountain lions are the most well-known and prevalent desert felines. Both bobcats and mountain lions are considered "small cats," meaning they can purr but not roar. In fact, mountain lions are the largest small cat in the world. Learn more about these awesome animals with Luke in the video below.

Luke Loves Cats!

Desert Cats

Let's be a scientist!

You can learn a lot about an animal from their skull--are they predator or prey? What do they eat? What are some of their unique adaptations? Join Luke and Nicole as they explore the skulls of two of our most charismatic desert creatures: the bobcat and the mountain lion! Use your scientific powers of deduction as a scientist to make educated guesses about different desert animal skulls in the lesson plan below.

Spectacular Skulls


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Contact us

We're socially distanced but still connected by the awesomeness of science!

Have questions about the Sonoran Desert? Want a lesson on a specific topic? Email us at

You can also connect by tagging us on Facebook or Instagram @mcdowellsonoranconservancy. We would love to see your science notebooks or learn what teaching resources you're using.

Luke Challis, Program Manager

Luke loves science and being out and about in nature! He studies a lot about biology, ways of thinking, and philosophy. Luke also loves to teach and encourage kids and adults to always keep learning.

Nicole Kallman, Education Coordinator

Nicole loves science and exploration. In college, she studied physics and biology. Now, she shares her excitement about science with others, encouraging everyone to follow in the footsteps of Miss Frizzle: "take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!"