Photo: Courtesy MDC
By Don Corrigan (South County Times)
It’s not exactly a dog-eat-dog world out there, but it certainly is competitive. Plants compete for sunlight. Songbirds compete for nesting sites. Predators compete for prey. And teachers compete to be the best educators they can be.
Recently, some highly-motivated teachers from across the St. Louis region convened on Powder Valley Nature Conservation Center to sharpen their skills and knowledge for teaching ecology.
The Discover Nature Schools Workshop was led by David Bruns, conservation education consultant with the Missouri Department of Conservation. Bruns encouraged teachers to get outside with their students and become familiar with the natural world.
“This is a fabulous opportunity to help teachers enable their students to experience authentic conservation practices first hand within a Missouri context,” explained Bruns, prior to the workshop on Jan. 6.
Photo: Courtesy MDC
Bird buffs, falcon fanciers, and anyone enraptured by raptors are invited to meet the objects of their admiration close up at An Evening with Raptors.
An Evening with Raptors is a free event hosted by the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center in Kirkwood. It takes place Friday, Jan. 31 from 7-9 p.m. and is open to all ages. The event will be joined this year by long-time MDC partner, St. Louis Sprout and About.
Photo: Ursula Ruhl
By Don Corrigan (South County Times)
On wintry days with cold rain, ice and snow, most people of sound mind and body are warming by the gas fire and flat screen or doing yoga at the rec center. They are not thinking about their Meramec River heritage.
Sunset Hills and Fenton residents should think twice before turning their backs on the river. The muddy Meramec borders parts of each city and it’s a part of each city’s rich history.
To know a little bit about that history, it’s not at all necessary to scour library book shelves or to pound the right search words on a keyboard to find archival material on the World Wide Web. Actually, you can just put on your mukluks, a coat and ear muffs – and hit the trails on each side of the river.
Pictured: A portion of Grant’s Trail. This newly signed agreement opens the door for another classic trail, like the Great Rivers Greenway trail system in the St. Louis area.
Department of Natural Resources and Ameren Missouri’s Missouri Central Railroad sign agreement on Rock Island Line Corridor.
The Missouri Department of Natural Resources recently signed an Interim Trail Use Agreement with Missouri Central Railroad Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ameren Missouri, paving the way for the future railbanking of 144 miles of the former Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad corridor, which stretches from Windsor to Beaufort, Missouri. The Interim Trail Use Agreement ensures the preservation of the former railroad corridor for future transportation use and facilitates the eventual donation of the property to the department for recreational trail use.
Reservations are now open to see MDC’s award-winning photographer as he shares stunning images of Missouri’s wildlife and landscapes.
The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) presents an evening with award-winning MDC photographer Noppadol Paothong at Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center in Kirkwood Friday, Jan. 17 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Paothong’s photography has been featured in the Missouri Conservationist and Xplor magazines, and many other publications including National Audubon, Ranger Rick, BBC, and the Nature Conservancy.
Paothong is a nature/conservation photographer and an associate fellow with the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP). The iLCP is an elite group of the world’s top wildlife, nature, and culture photographers around the globe.
Photo by Diana Linsley, Webster-Kirkwood Times.
“Our goal is not to eliminate the deer population – just to control their numbers,” said Fitch. “The MDC has been having managed deer archery hunts in state parks within St. Louis County for many years. What we want to do in county parks is no different.”
By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)
Powder Valley Nature Center in Kirkwood had a successful deer hunt this November to thin the population. St. Louis County officials have been consulting with the center for advice on addressing deer issues in county parks.
Gateway Greening’s annual Seed Packet Sale will be held Saturday, January 25, 2020, from 9:00 a.m. to Noon, located at the Gateway Greening Offices, 2211 Washington Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63103.
Seed packets will be available for sale for just $0.25 each. We will also have seed starting kits and jiffy pots on sale for discounted prices. While you’re here, pick up pest management supplies and more at the Gateway Greening Store.
Gateway Greening branded seed packets will be available for purchase for $1.00 each.
Art photography exhibit by Jeanine Michna-Bales -Through Darkness to Light: Photographs Along the Underground Railroad. Photo courtesy Jeanine Michna-Bales
Nature’s outdoor settings have a unique mystery at night. Photographer Jeanine Michna-Bales has captured the images of trees, fields and rivers that freedom seekers on the Underground Railroad would have seen as they journeyed at night before the Civil War. A free exhibit of her art entitled Through Darkness to Light: Photographs Along the Underground Railroad, will be on display now through Jan. 4 at the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Anita B. Gorman Discovery Center in Kansas City.
An estimated 100,000 slaves fled to freedom between 1830 and the end of the Civil War in 1865. They usually traveled at night often in rugged terrain away from roads where they could be easily pursued. Michna-Bales took photographs along 2,000 miles of one Underground Railroad route that ran from Louisiana to Canada. The viewer sees scenes and shadows as the slaves may have seen them as they walked by night toward freedom. ExhibitsUSA, a program of Mid-America Arts Alliance, helped organize the display.
Jeffery P. Bonner, Ph.D., Dana Brown President & CEO, Saint Louis Zoo (left) next to Lesley S. Hoffarth, P.E., President & Executive Director, Forest Park Forever (center) and Lisa Kelley, Ph.D., Executive Director, Saint Louis Zoo WildCare Institute (right). Accepting the 2019 Saint Louis Zoo Conservation Award for Forest Park Forever was Hoffarth. The Conservation Award and three community awards were presented at the Zoo’s 28th Annual Marlin Perkins Society Celebration on Nov. 13, 2019. Photo courtesy S. Carmody Photography.
The Saint Louis Zoo Conservation Award was recently presented to Forest Park Forever. For over 30 years, the nonprofit conservancy has worked to enhance the ecological diversity of Forest Park and create the recreational and educational opportunities for students and adults that make Forest Park the number one city park in the country.
The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) encourages experienced birders to become citizen scientists by helping with the National Audubon Society’s 120th Annual Christmas Bird Count (CBC) between Dec. 14 and Jan. 5 – including about 20 counts in Missouri.
The CBC is an annual winter bird census where thousands of volunteers across the U.S., Canada, and many other countries in the Western Hemisphere count birds over a 24-hour period between Dec. 14 and Jan. 5. Christmas Bird Counts gather data on winter bird populations to track their long-term trends. Each CBC has a coordinator that assigns portions of a 15-mile diameter count circle to participants to count all birds seen and heard. Learn more at audubon.org/conservation/join-christmas-bird-count.
Missouri hosts about 20 CBCs, some of which are listed below. If interested in participating, contact the CBC organizer listed.
For a full list of CBCs, visit audubon.maps.arcgis.com/apps/View/index.html?appid=fadfb421e95f4949bde20c29a38228bd.
MDC State Ornithologist Sarah Kendrick offers these CBC tips:
- If you’ve never participated in a CBC, tell the organizer so they can place you with experienced birders.
- Share your level of birding knowledge when you contact the CBC organizer so they can make sure you’re with a team with the experience to properly identify birds seen or heard.
- Dress warmly. Most CBCs will be held regardless of weather unless inclement weather is dangerous.
- Bring snacks and beverages to stay fueled for a long day.
For more information on Missouri birds, visit MDC’s online Field Guide at nature.mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/field-guide/search.