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Powder Valley Nature Center welcomes Renowned Missouri Nature Photographer Matt Miles Dec. 1

Nature and wildlife photographer Matt Miles will give a presentation at Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center on Friday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. Following the presentation, Miles will be on hand to autograph his new book Missouri Wild and Wonderful. (Photo: MDC)

The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Powder Valley Nature Center will welcome accomplished Missouri nature and wildlife photographer Matt Miles for a special presentation on Friday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m.  Miles, who recently published the book MissouriWild and Wonderful, will share some of his spectacular photographs on the video wall in Powder Valley’s auditorium as he discusses his experiences during 20 years of photographing outdoor Missouri.

Find more information from the MDC, including how to register for the event below.

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Thoughts On Gavin Schmidt’s Climate Predictions

By Don Corrigan

Gavin Schmidt of REAL CLIMATE continues to follow a disturbing warming trend in 2017.  He predicts 2017, which is now drawing to close, will be either the second or third warmest on record, behind the leader 2016.  Also, it will be the warmest ever for a year not under the influence of El Nino.  Schmidt has a very informative site
that provides a commentary on climate science by working scientists for the concerned public and working journalists.  REAL CLIMATE aims to provide a quick response to developing stories and provide the context sometimes missing in mainstream commentary. I like to go to Schmidt’s archives, such as July, when RealClimate posts this: 

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The Future Of Flooding In St. Louis: Is There A Solution?

Missouri Route 141/Interstate 44 intersection. Photo by Ursula Ruhl (SCT).

Officials with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers told a concerned audience at the Powder Valley Nature Center on Nov. 1 that there’s undoubtedly more rain — and flooding – in the long-range weather forecast for this area.

Mayors from Kirkwood, Fenton and Valley Park, along with about 70 area residents, attended the Corps’ Meramec River Flood Risk Workshop. Local mayors introduced themselves before the program began and noted damage to their towns by flooding since 2015.

“No one has the magic answer on how to stop the rains or stop the flooding,” said Fenton Mayor Josh Voyles. “But we welcome the chance to discuss how we can prepare for future flood events here tonight.”

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Missouri State Parks Extends Centennial Passport Program

Missouri State Parks announced today that, because of its ongoing popularity across the state, the Centennial Passport program has been extended until April 9, 2018.

The original deadline was Oct. 31, 2017. The new deadline date commemorates the state park system’s founding on April 9, 1917, and gives Passport participants an additional six months to complete the program. The extension applies to both the printed passport and the digital passport formats.

All of the rules remain the same, except for the deadlines:
Printed – Completed passports must be presented to park/historic site staff for verification by close of business on Monday, April 9, 2018.
Digital – To be eligible for a prize package, passports must be completed by close of business on Monday, April 9, 2018.

Grand Prize drawings will now be held on May 15, 2018. Go to mostateparks.com/passport for more information about the Centennial Passport Program.

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SIERRA CLUB LAUNCHES CLIMATE CHANGE CULINARY TOUR

From left to right are Barbara Wall, Diane Albright, and Rachel Speed, Sierra Club members who participated in the Climate Change Culinary tour.

Climate change often seems like a big, slow-moving monster that haunts other people’s lives in other locations, but the powerful natural disasters associated with climate change can be felt from thousands of miles away right here in St Louis.

Members of the Sierra Club spoke with St. Louis area restaurateurs who have roots in communities that have been hit by natural disasters. The Sierra Club Climate Change Culinary Tour gave participants plenty to chew on, both literally and figuratively, as they partook in carefully crafted cuisine and learned about the cultures and communities that inspire each venue.

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Powder Valley Nature Center To Close Nov 4-6 For Managed Deer Hunt

Photo by Diana Linsley, Webster-Kirkwood Times.

Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center and its grounds will be closed this Saturday, Nov. 4 through Monday, Nov. 6 to accommodate a managed archery deer hunt in the area.

The managed hunt is being used as a tool to help keep deer numbers at a healthy level.

During the closure, the nature center building and grounds, including the surrounding trails, will not be accessible to the general public.  Powder Valley will resume normal operational hours again starting Tuesday, Nov. 7.

The goal of the three-day managed hunt is to help balance deer populations which have grown beyond what Powder Valley’s 112-acre habitat can provide for, according to MDC Urban Wildlife Biologist Erin Shank.  Using data from fall spotlight survey counts, Shank estimates the deer population is approximately five times what can comfortably exist there, given the area’s size and proximity to residences and roadways.

More from the MDC release below.

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Some creatures can’t seem to catch a break, especially around the Halloween season

Photo: Webster-Kirkwood Times

No haunted house for Halloween is complete without a scary bat, a spooky owl and a sly, skittering spider. Area yard decorations feature bug-eyed spiders, hooting owls and flapping bats all ready to give kids the critter jitters.

Certain creepy creatures are just naturally synonymous with Halloween. But why? Do spiders, bats and owls deserve a bad rap every October?

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Black & Green Wednesday: The Sixth Mass Extinction

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Workshop: Soil Health for Native Plant Landscaping, Habitat Restoration, Sustainable Agriculture, Vegetable Gardening, and Water Quality

Hosted by the horticulture program at St. Louis Community College, Meramec Campus, the workshop will be held Friday, Nov. 3, 2017, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. A panel discussion with all speakers will follow the individual presentations.

Geared to vegetable gardeners and native plant enthusiasts, farmers, and land and water conservation professionals, this soil health workshop produced by the Grow Native! program will present a wealth of information from four experts all traveling to St. Louis for this special learning opportunity.

See speakers, cost, and location details below.

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Is There Hope For Radoactive Contamination Clean-up At West Lake Landfill?

Kay Drey addresses the EPA officials at a public listening session concerning the West Lake Landfill, Oct. 19, 2017.

There have been decades of public information meetings, public feedback sessions, and government finger-pointing. There have also been years of generational illness – the kind that leaves both adults and children with rare auto-immune disorders and cancers. The result? Devastation to entire communities and families, an endless stack of funeral notices and a future that continued to promise more of the same.

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