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Last Call To Enter The Powder Valley Nature Center 2019 photo contest

Kate Sprague’s photo of a whitetail buck won first place in the Wildlife category in last year’s 2018 Powder Valley Nature Center Amateur Photography contest.

Nature photographers will have until Dec. 1 to enter images taken at the nature center and nearby MDC areas.

The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center wants to see how its visitors connect to nature with their cameras. The nature center is issuing the last call for entries in its 2019 Amateur Photography contest. Deadline for all entries will be Dec. 1.

This photo contest is free to enter for amateur photographers of all ages and includes separate categories for youth and adult photographers. To qualify, photographs must have been taken at Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center, or nearby Emmenegger Nature Park and Possum Woods Conservation Area, or Claire Gempp Davidson Memorial Wildlife Area.

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Trout Fishing Opportunities Just Got Bigger This Winter For St. Louis Area Residents

Photo by MDC Staff, courtesy Missouri Department of Conservation.

The Missouri Department of Conservation celebrates 50 years of urban fishing by stocking 10 pound rainbow trout in select St. Louis lakes.

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of its Urban Fishing Program (UFP) this year. Since 1969, the UFP has grown from a limited experiment to an expanded and robust program providing close-to-home fishing for St. Louis area citizens.  These opportunities include pursuing rainbow trout during the winter in select UFP lakes.

In that same theme of making things bigger, MDC will stock an increased number of extra-large lunker rainbow trout this season at its UFP lakes in honor of the 50th anniversary. Some of these giants could tip the scales at 10lbs.

“St. Louis-area trout anglers might need to buy some heavier tackle,” said Fisheries Management Biologist Kevin Meneau.

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Noah’s Climate Change Action

By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)

The Popular Culture Association slotted me for a talk on “Squirrels: Icons of the Midwest” a couple of weeks ago. On the way to give my talk in Ohio, I stopped at the Ark, the full-size model boat of old Noah, built by the Creation Museum and its founder Ken Ham.

Bill Nye the “Science Guy” says Ken Ham is all about fake science. Nye says dinos lived 65 million years ago and couldn’t have been on the Ark. Ham’s take on Genesis is that the Earth is only a few thousand years old and dinosaurs were human contemporaries. Ham has a few Scutosauruses on his big boat.

I didn’t go to the Ark for my science. And Ham’s lecture on Adam and Eve’s sin causing all the imperfections in the creation – he included gays and kids with Down syndrome – struck me as some kind of warped sci-fi nonsense.

I traveled to Ham’s theme park to get specs on building an Ark. We may need to build a few Arks as our seas rise. I know climate warming skeptics scoff about rising seas. As Noah told his wife, Naamah, while herding Scutosauruses onto his Ark, “scoffers will scoff.”

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Midwest Is Nuts About Squirrels, Professor Insists

Olney, Illinois, has a white squirrel monument in its downtown. It conducts a squirrel parade and what is tagged as a “Squirrel Scamper” event for kids. Numerous squirrel happenings take place in the rural Illinois town with a population of 8,500 that positions itself in tourism materials as “The Home of White Squirrels.”

Marysville, Kansas, bills itself as the “Home of the Black Squirrels,” and has been promoting a special Black Squirrel Night for almost a half century. The town has named the black squirrel its official mascot and honors it with a Black Squirrels on Parade event.

Squirrels are honored with statues, parades and festivals in more than a score of Midwest cities, according to Don Corrigan, author of “Nuts About Squirrels: The Rodents That Captured Popular Culture.” Corrigan presented a lecture, “Squirrels: Icons of the Midwest,” in Cincinnati, Ohio, in October at the annual Midwest Popular Culture Conference.

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Here’s How You Can Help Reverse Declining Bird Numbers

Eastern Meadowlark Photo: MDC

A recent study from prominent bird researchers in the U.S. and Canada, including Cornell Lab of Ornithology, found that North America has lost nearly 3 billion birds in the last 50 years, and those declines are also occurring in Missouri. The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is partnering with other conservation agencies and organizations to address population declines in the state and offer solutions.

“It’s difficult to pinpoint the exact causes of these widespread bird declines because many birds are migratory and they breed here but winter out of the country,” said MDC State Ornithologist Sarah Kendrick. “But one of the threats birds are facing is loss of breeding habitat and managers of public and private land can help reverse these declines.”

Eastern meadowlark, prairie warbler, field sparrow, cerulean warbler, and red-headed woodpecker among threatened species.

See details below with information about what you can do to help!

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Go Wild At The Saint Louis Zoo This Holiday Season

Photo by Micah Usher, Saint Louis Zoo

A wild, arctic wonderland with over 1 million twinkling holiday lights and festive family fun awaits you at U.S. Bank Wild Lights at the Saint Louis Zoo!

 2019 Event Dates –  Wild Lights is open from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on the following dates: Friday-Sunday, Nov. 29-Dec.1 and Wednesday-Sunday, Dec. 4-8.

Find more information and event details below.

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Taste Of Green Gala, Nov. 14

Join earthday365 and the Green Dining Alliance for the annual Taste of Green gala at St. Louis ArtWorks, 5959 Delmar Blvd., Thursday, Nov. 14, 5 – 8 p.m.

Enjoy delicious food tastings and drinks provided by Green Dining Alliance-certified restaurants, including specialty cocktails created by celebrated food writer and mixologist Matt Sorrell. You will be treated to a silent auction, fun Thanksgiving-themed raffles, a wine pull, and other activities.

This event is crucial to earthday365 in order to fund our year-round programs: The Green Dining Alliance (GDA), the only restaurant sustainability certification program in the U.S. that works with restaurants to reduce their environmental impact; and Recycling On the Go (ROG), an event recycling service program, which offers both recycling and compost collection at small and large events in the St. Louis metro area.

Buy tickets HERE.

Celebrating 50 Years Of Environmental Action

The staff of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment. Top row, from left: Rae Miller, Emmaline Giles, Anna Lin-Schweitzer, Jenn DeRose, Tosha Phonix, Denise Baker, Maisah Khan, Melissa Vatterott Bottom row, from left: Gabriella Simoneit, Heather Navarro, Ed Smith, Laura Lock. Not pictured: Jim Karpowicz.

The Missouri Coalition for the Environment (MCE) was founded in 1969 as the St. Louis region’s first independent grassroots organization created to address ecological policy issues. Now in 2019, the group is celebrating 50 years of pro-environment activism.

“I think it’s a really healthy sign that Missourians are engaged in environmental and health policies,” said Heather Navarro, MCE’s director for going on seven years. “This organization has developed a legacy for being a credible source and effective advocate. People really believe in what we do. They trust us.”

Read more of the West End Word newspaper story by Melissa wilkinson HERE.

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Out Of The Classrooms & Into Nature

Lesli Moylan, director of the Missouri Environmental Education Association, works with children during a program several years ago in conjunction with the YMCA. Photo courtesy of Lesli Moylan.

Missouri Environmental Education Association helps educators inspire youth people to care about, understand and act for environment.

Nature and outdoor teachers all over the state are psyched about the Missouri Environmental Education Association conference coming to St. Louis on Nov. 1-3. Lesli Moylan of Kirkwood is the new executive director of MEEA, and she’s a busy bee these days.

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Want To Know More About Missouri’s Wolf spiders? Here’s Your Chance!

Photo by David Bruns and courtesy the MDC.

October is that spooky time of the year! What better time to attend a special presentation on spiders? Especially when there could be ten thousand of them lurking in your local field.

Visitors will discover the secret world of these arachnid hunters, with a chance for close encounters during this free nighttime presentation on Friday, Oct. 18 from 7-9 p.m.

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