About 150 students from 24 northern California schools gathered at CSU Sacramento Saturday for the 29th annual Nature Bowl competition.
The environment-focused competition included nature jeopardy, relay races and individual presentations.
"The kids are becoming stewards of our environment," said Bruce Forman, a naturalist with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the event sponsor. "This shows the kids that they, too, can make a difference in conservation."
Dylan Ek, a third-grader from Lake Forest Elementary School in El Dorado Hills, was munching on a burrito after a long morning of competitions. "It's hard to hold onto your knowledge when you're under pressure," the 10-year-old said, relieved that he was done for the day.
The Nature Bowl is broken down into two divisions - one with third- and fourth-graders and other session with fifth- and sixth-graders.
Even at the elementary level, the questions are challenging. At one jeopardy session, Forman asked, "What is the origin of energy that drives the water cycle?"
The contestants huddled together discussing the answer before one shouted, "The sun."
Call The Bee's Richard Chang, (916) 321-1018. Follow him on Twitter @RichardYChang.