Mink Monitoring Part 5: Earth Day Edition

By: Jim Haniford Well, here we are, a little over five months into Shirley Heinze Land Trust’s trail cam monitoring project at Meadowbrook Nature Preserve.  We’re marking Earth Day on the west branch of the tributary of Salt Creek, a waterway that rambles carelessly through the bottomlands of the ancient moraine.  The occasion is attended …

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Peeperpalooza Arrives in the Great Marsh

By: Audra Ebling For much of my life, my sensory experience of springtime leaned heavily on sight and scent. The lemony yellow of a daffodil glowing against the still-dormant grass. The irresistible perfume of a neighbor’s lilac bushes, which managed to slow down my pace on my otherwise rushed walk to the train. These were …

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Nature In My Backyard – April Activities

Introducing Nature In My Backyard, a new resource page where you’ll find monthly activities and challenges for the whole family to explore nature… right in your own neighborhood! Here’s your lead challenge for April!   April is Earth Month We’re well into the spring season, and every day there are more signs of spring that …

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Autumn Olive, Buckthorn and Privet, Oh My!

By Audra Ebling Once you see them, you can’t un-see them. Invasive plant species, that is. They are everywhere. My first personal experience with invasive species occurred when we bought a house on the north side of Chicago in the mid 90s that had a morning glory-type vine crawling its way up the garage. Charming, …

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Snowy Scenes: Mink Monitoring Part 4

By: Jim Haniford Well, here we are.  It’s the fourth blog already.  Hard to believe it’s been over a month since I started sharing these experiences with you.  They’re the field notes of our ongoing campaign to monitor the American mink along a tributary of Salt Creek that snakes its way through Meadowbrook Nature Preserve.  …

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Invasive Species Awareness Week: Burning Bush

By: Mary Nell Murphy While driving on Hwy 12 near the Indiana Dunes parks last fall, I stopped at a wayside for a stretch break and looked across the road to a sea of watermelon pink under the forest canopy. Delightful? No! As I suspected, and as I confirmed “upon further review of the field” …

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Invasive Species Awareness Week: Oriental Bittersweet

By: Glenn Major As a child, our mother sent us out to collect Bittersweet vines. Their attractive fruit mixed with gourds from the garden made for a festive holiday decoration of table or mantle. Folks wove them into colorful Christmas wreaths and candle rings. There lies the problem; these attractive vines imported from Asia in …

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Drama on Damon Run: Mink Monitoring Part 3

This story is part of an ongoing wildlife monitoring project along a tributary of Salt Creek, Damon Run,  that meanders through Meadowbrook Nature Preserve. Check out Part 1 and Part 2 to catch up!   By: Jim Haniford Nothing prepared me for winter through the lens of the trail camera.  Once Sarah fine-tuned its sensitivity, …

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