Below is a list of links to recordings of events of interest from other organizations that took place in 2020.
December 16, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 15, Hosted by National Audubon Society
Join us as we look back at some highlights from the year, including a new clip from our interview with the legendary Dr. Jane Goodall, snippets from our favorite panel discussions, a surprise “Stump the Expert” round, and so much more.
December 9, 2020 – Crawling, Flying, and Digging in Your Yard, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
If you plant the plants, the animals will come. What insects can you expect to find when you start making an attractive yard? Entomologist Terry Miesle will share his photographs and experiences with you as we explore the world of bugs! Terry Miesle is an insect enthusiast and naturalist living in East Dundee, Illinois – often uncomfortably close to the Fox River. He monitors bumblebees and other insects in prairies and among the increasing number of native plants in his yard. Terry also identifies bumblebees for U of I’s Beespotter project.
December 9, 2020 – Ecology & Conservation of Illinois Dragonflies, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
The aquatic insect order Odonata includes the dragonflies and damselflies – remarkable insects strongly tied to the wetlands and waterways in which they breed and develop. Their aquatic niches and habitat requirements in northern Illinois are under constant threat from human development which alters the hydrology of the systems upon which they rely. This webinar will: provide an overview of their complex life cycle and natural history; consider the specific needs of, and stressors on, local species; evaluate critical areas for conservation within the Chicago Living Corridors map; and, offer suggestions for how citizen scientists and private landowners can become involved in the monitoring and conservation of these essential creatures.
December 2, 2020 – Hunters of the Night, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
“Hoo” are the strange and mysterious creatures that lurk in the dark in the neighborhoods around us? Join us to learn about Owls and how these rarely seen top predators rule the night skies. (Note: During this program, an owl is fed a thawed mouse. Viewer discretion advised.)
November 18, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 14, Hosted by National Audubon Society
Birds have provided us with so much joy throughout 2020 and as winter approaches, we turn our spotlight to some of the ways you can enjoy and protect birds—all from the comfort of home. Experts Melissa Groo and Geoff LeBaron will guide you through the dos and don’ts of bird feeding, followed by John Rowden and Connie Sanchez who will share simple tips for making your home bird-friendly. Finally, David Mears and Erik Schneider provide an overview of America’s most important bird protection law—the Migratory Bird Treaty Act—and the actions you can take to protect it.
November 18, 2020 – Salt Smart, Save More!, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation and DuPage County Stormwater Management
Before you salt your driveway this winter, find out how much is too much and how you can be safe and reduce the amount of salt going down the drain into the rivers and streams. Learn the impact the salt has to wildlife and water quality. Learn more at http://saltsmart.org/
November 12, 2020 – Trees & Water Sensitive Urban Design, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation and DuPage County Stormwater Management
Sponsored by DuPage County Stormwater Management and The Conservation Foundation, this presentation explores urban trees. Urban trees can be an invaluable asset to cities. When designed correctly, trees can assist communities in managing stormwater efficiently and sustainably by reducing runoff and improving water quality. However, what are the key factors to consider to successfully integrate these beautiful elements into Low Impact Development (LID) schemes?
November 11, 2020 – The Incredible Crane: Sandhill Cranes, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Often seen before they are heard, Sandhill Cranes are a wonderful conservation success story. We will explore what makes these birds so remarkable and how to see them during their annual migration.
November 11, 2020 – Unexpected Pleasures: What Our Restored Habitat Taught Us, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
Ders Anderson will present “Unexpected pleasures: What our restored habitat taught us” to highlight his family’s relationship with a special piece of property. As he describes it, “We started with a simple intent to create a native prairie on part of our property. But as the years went by, we connected many aspects of our life to the restoration as its life and our family lives matured and changed. Looking back now, after 25 years, the prairie and its plants and critters enriched us all in surprising ways.”
November 4, 2020 – Conservation Inside: Saving Water, Energy, and Money, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
As many of us have started working from home, utility bills may be creeping up. Join us, along with special guests from Nicor Gas and American Water to learn how you can save water and energy at home, thus saving you money! With some minor changes in habits coupled with available rebates, you can save a little money this winter while also protecting the planet.
October 28, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 13, Hosted by National Audubon Society
In this special Owl-oween episode, we are joined by Audubon Pennsylvania’s Carrie Barron, Center Manager at the John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove, and her special guest Oden the Great Horned Owl. Then, we will get a first-hand look behind the science of owl banding with Sean Graesser and Tyler Christensen, co-founders of Wild Bird Research Group. Finally, we’ll look back on Indigenous Peoples’ Day and take a look forward to the future of Indigenous conservation with Audubon’s Bradford Kasberg.
October 28, 2020 – Bats of NE Illinois, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Meet the bats of NE Illinois! Find out who they are and where they will be when Halloween arrives. These amazing flying mammals have a story to tell about how they have adapted to a rapidly changing landscape.
October 21, 2020 – Celebrating OAKtober with a Healthy Yard, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation and DuPage County Stormwater Management
Learn about the significance of oaks in Illinois and what challenges they are facing across our region. Get involved in supporting our natural area by planning a healthy, native garden in your own yard. This presentation will cover the natural history of Illinois, current challenges facing oak ecosystems, why your yard is critical to helping oaks and how you can do your part!
October 14, 2020 – Organic Farming with Green Earth Harvest, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Green Earth Harvest, as a program of The Conservation Foundation, grows organic vegetables for 600 families a year and in doing so, conserves natural resources along the way. Learn more about the work that we do and how you can use some of these ideas for your home garden, too!
October 14, 2020 – Landscaping For Birds, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
Most birds do not come to feeders but you can easily attract them to your yard using native plants! Planting natives is one of the easiest and most impactful things you can do as an individual to help birds and other wildlife. Like insects, birds have evolved with our native plants and rely on them to provide for their needs year-round and throughout their lives. For this program, we will discuss using natives to support the primary needs of birds; food, shelter, and nesting, as well as other tips you can implement in your yard to attract and help birds thrive.
October 7, 2020 – Beautiful Ponds–Using Native Plants for Color and Function in Stormwater Basins, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
A naturalized neighborhood pond shoreline can reduce erosion, geese and algae. But does this mean your pond will look weedy? Of course not! Learn the why, where and how to create native areas for stormwater Best Management Practices, the many benefits they provide, and how to keep them looking and working their best.
September 30, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 12, Hosted by National Audubon Society
This month, we are joined by science writer, naturalist, and artist Rosemary Mosco to talk about her popular web comics that bring out the funny side of the natural world. Then, we’re shifting our eyes to the skies for a conversation with the Executive Director of Panama Audubon Society Rosabel Miró, and Chair of Migration Studies for Florida Keys Audubon Society and Director of the Florida Keys Hawkwatch Rafael Gálvez about this year’s hawk migration. Plus, in honor of Latinx Heritage Month, a special panel discussion with Board Member and Regional Director for National Audubon Society’s Atlantic-South Region Sara Fuentes, Digital Production Coordinator Nadia Rodriguez, and Conservation Data Coordinator Refugio Mariscal. And last but certainly not least, a closer look at how Audubon is helping ‘Get Out the Vote’ ahead of the November election.
September 30, 2020 – Creating a New Urban Forest, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Trees are on the forefront of climate change mitigation, human health, and social justice. Their importance cannot be understated. However, it can be difficult to fund, plant and support more trees. DuPage County has worked to overcome many of these obstacles at their 202-acre government campus. What used to be a monoculture landscape is now a hotbed of diversity. From trees, to funding, to an Arboretum level status, the campus has made vast improvements with more in the pipeline to continue to increase the tree canopy. Join Andi Dierich, the DuPage County Environmental Coordinator, for this presentation that will have some tips and ideas for those planting a single tree to folks planting hundreds.
September 24, 2020 – The Bombus Among Us – Bumble Bee Basics, Hosted by Wild Ones – Native Plants, Natural Landscapes
Bumble bees (Bombus) are by far our most charismatic and recognizable native bees. In order to help our bumble bees thrive, we must understand their life cycle and nutritional needs. Wild Ones Honorary Director, Biologist, and author of “Bee: An Identification and Native Plant Forage Guide” and “Pollinators of Native Plants”, Heather Holm, illustrates the bumble bee life cycle through the growing season; the importance of selecting the right native (woody and herbaceous) plants to meet the nutritional needs of the queens, workers, and males; their habitat; the impacts on populations from climate change; and common upper Midwestern and eastern bumble bee species. She also features species in decline including the federally endangered rusty patched bumble bee.
September 23, 2020 – Just Passing Through–Fall Migrating Birds, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Birds perform some amazing feats in their twice a year migrations. They have been making these legendary trips for hundreds of thousands of years. There must be some advantage that outweighs the hazards. Join world birder, Denis Kania, as he sheds some light on these incredible flights and how each of us can play a part in assisting our avian friends.
September 23, 2020 – Native Bumble Bees in Your Own Backyard: Reflections of a Backyard Bee-chaser, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
For this webinar, Brandie Dunn will introduce you to a variety of charming bumble bee characters which includes the once common, but now endangered Rusty-patched bumble bee, who just might still be spotted in your very own backyard should you choose to invite them. Native plant selection, nesting & overwintering habitat, along with land management recommendations will be discussed. Finally, she will reflect on her own personal #backyardneighborchallenge she conducted during the 70 days of Illinois’ stay-at-home order and the unique insights gleaned from the daily practice of exploring the diversity of life in her neighborhood during an unsettling time in our world’s history.
September 16, 2020 – Leave the Leaves, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation and DuPage County Stormwater Management
Leaves are free and one of the most nutrient rich resources available in the fall. Find out how leaves impact water quality in our rivers and streams and how you can put leaves to work in your garden. Sponsored by DuPage County Stormwater Management.
September 12, 2020 – Native Gardens Through the Seasons: A Virtual Walk, Hosted by West Cook Wild Ones and the Interfaith Green Network
Get a virtual, behind-the-scenes look at three gorgeous, Oak Park and Berwyn native gardens through the seasons! You’ll learn from three outstanding home gardeners who have been experimenting with and observing native plants for more than 50 years between them.
September 9, 2020 – How to Collect and Sow Native Plant Seeds, Hosted by Barrington Area Library
Sarah Michehl from The Land Conservancy of McHenry County discusses collecting and sowing native plant seeds. Learn basic seed identification, collection methods and timelines, and tips on how to sow. Our habitats need all the native plant help they can get!
September 9, 2020 – Raptors in Your Neighborhood: Learning About Our Local Birds of Prey, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Did you know that many Birds of Prey (also known as Raptors) can be found in our area? Join us to see our Owls, Hawks and Falcons up close. You will learn fascinating facts about them and explore the various issues they face, including predator/prey relationships and the important role they have in our ecosystem. You will come away with a new understanding and a deep appreciation of these truly wild creatures that live among us.
September 4, 2020 – Beyond Plants: What Else do Insects Need to Thrive, Hosted by Xerces Society
A garden that has an abundance of flowers will support insects—but to maximize the diversity of insects your garden can support, you’ll also need to provide places where they can nest, lay eggs, and shelter. Join Matthew Shepherd to learn about how to provide insects the resources they need to thrive in your backyard.
September 2, 2020 – Oaks are A-Oak-Kay!, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Oak trees are an iconic symbol of hardwood forests. Recently, stewards discovered oaks were struggling in the Chicago area. Join us to learn about the Oak Recovery Program, how you can to improve habitats for oaks, which oaks to plant, and what other plants like to live around oaks.
August 26, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 11, Hosted by National Audubon Society
This month, meet astronaut and Audubon board member Dr. Kathryn Sullivan! Then have your fall bird migration questions answered by Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Dr. Kevin J. McGowan and Audubon’s Chad Witko, and learn tips and activities for back-to-school season from Audubon’s Joseph Manson and Angel Poe.
August 25, 2020 – Tom Talks – Woody Plants Webinar – Part 1, Tom Talks – Woody Plants Webinar – Part 2, Hosted by McHenry County Conservation District
One of Tom’s favorite topics, we’ll be splitting this webinar into 2 parts. You’ll learn not only how to tell oak species apart, but how trees work as well!
August 19, 2020 – Recycling Confusion–Let’s Sort it Out!, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
When China ceased accepting many of the world’s recyclables in 2018, it not only caused the value of materials to plummet due to oversupply but also brought to light how misunderstood recycling has become over the past 20 years. Residents and businesses alike are placing items in traditional collection containers that can only be recycled elsewhere. Marta Keane, Recycling Specialist for Will County, will sort through these issues and highlight the many specialty collections the County offers to divert as much material from the landfill as possible.
August 12, 2020 – Bringing Hummingbirds to Your Yard, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
People have always been fascinated by hummingbirds. Their acrobatic flight capabilities along with their colorful plumage are just some of the reasons. Denis Kania has traveled around the world to see 212 different species of hummingbirds. Today he will talk about the only species that shows up in our area, the Ruby-throated Hummingbird. We will discuss ways to make your yard appealing to these amazing creatures.
August 12, 2020 – Identifying and Controlling Invasive Plants, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
This program will cover some of the most invasive species, how to identify them, methods to eliminate them, and native plants to replace them when appropriate. Flyers will be available on the CLC website for several invasive species for reference and perhaps to educate your neighbors! (Invasives know no property boundaries!) We encourage you to eradicate these invasive plants in your own yards and neighborhoods.
August 5, 2020 – Magnificent Monarchs, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
There is no more iconic butterfly than the monarch. But this symbol of delicate beauty and grace hides a truly amazing story. Learn about the life cycle of this amazing creature, the fantastic journey they make, and how you can attract them to your yard.
July 30, 2020 – What’s Blooming Now (Late July)?, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Take a pictorial walk through some Chicagoland habitats and see what’s blooming now! Become familiar with native plants you might see blooming in a prairie, woodland, or even in your yard! The third webinar in this series shows that no matter the time of year, there’s always something blooming!
July 29, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 10, Hosted by National Audubon Society
This month, join David Sibley as he discusses his new book, What It’s Like to Be a Bird, and takes audience questions; learn more about the 2020 Audubon Photography Awards from the judges; and play Stump the Expert with bird experts Kenn Kaufman and Purbita Saha.
July 22, 2020 – An Intimate Look at the Life Cycle of the Monarch Butterfly, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
Join us for the second in Chicago Living Corridors’ 2020 webinar series. Debbie Groat presents “An Intimate Look at the Life Cycle of the Monarch Butterfly.” Her presentation shares close-ups of all stages of the monarch’s metamorphosis and related images.
July 16, 2020 – Beginning Birdwatching at Home, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
This webinar is an introduction to backyard birding. Learn to identify some common backyard birds and find out how can you bring more varieties of birds to your yard.
July 13, 2020 – Converting Lawn to Pollinator Habitat, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Eric Anderson has many years of experience converting turf to native plants. Learn from his successes (and mistakes!) how you can remove grass and create a pollinator haven in your yard.
July 9, 2020 – Nature’s Best Hope by Dr. Doug Tallamy, Hosted by Wild Ones
Wild Ones Lifetime Honorary Director Dr. Doug Tallamy spends an evening discussing why we are ‘Natures Best Hope.’
July 9, 2020 – Bringing Butterflies to Your Yard, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Flashes of orange and yellow flitting among my flowers. How do you bring them to your yard? In this webinar, we will see some examples of native butterflies and find out what native plants will encourage them to visit you, too!
June 30, 2020 – Solutions for Water Problems: Rain Barrels, Rain Gardens & More, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
This Conservation@Home program is all about creating more eco-friendly yards with an emphasis on water conservation. Learn how to make improvements to your property that can help reduce water run-off, increase wildlife habitat, and improve the soil. The benefits of improving the environment are many including, reducing your water use (and water bill), creating more area for birds and butterflies, reducing chemical use, less lawn mowing, and learning about invasive species that may need to be controlled in your yard. This education program will cover a variety of techniques for transforming your yard, including the use of Rain Barrels, Rain Gardens, and the selection and use of native plants to solve water problems. Native plants grow naturally and need no watering or fertilizers once established. Native plants thrive on their own and do well, even during drought conditions. Their deep roots hold the soil, allow water to filter down deep into the ground where it belongs and, because they evolved here, they attract dozens of species of beneficial wildlife such as butterflies and songbirds.
June 29, 2020 – Common Invasive Plants (and What to Plant Instead), Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
In this webinar, we discuss a few invasive plants that are common to the Chicago region. Find out how to remove them from your yard and what to plant instead.
June 25, 2020 – Summer Flowers, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
What’s bloomin’? Have you been out in nature lately? What might you find blooming in your favorite preserve? Or even in your yard? Join us to see some great native flowers you can plant to bring nature into your yard!
June 24, 2020 – I Saw A Bird with Audubon: Episode 9, Hosted by National Audubon Society
This month, learn what to do if you find a baby bird away from its nest with Rita McMahon from Wild Bird Fund, meet some of the organizers behind the first ever Black Birders Week, and hear how Audubon celebrates Pride with our inclusive birding events, Let’s Go Birding Together. Plus, a sneak peek of the Summer issue of Audubon magazine.
June 22, 2020 – Conservation@Home, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Our intro class is back! Learn what Conservation@Home is and how you can use native plants to make your yard a better habitat. Also covered will be rain gardens, rain barrels, and more!
June 18, 2020 – Landscaping Design Ideas for Your Native Plant Garden, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Join TCF’s Nancy Cinatl to learn about how to design your native plant gardens to not only help your plants thrive, but also give your home that “curb appeal”.
June 17, 2020 – Invite Nature to Your Yard, Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors
This webinar provides information for those new to native planting as well as experienced native gardeners. Our presenter, Jim Kleinwachter, leads the Conservation Foundation’s Conservation@Home program to promote the creation of more eco-friendly yards. Learn a variety of techniques for transforming your yard, including the selection and use of native plants, identification of invasive species, and solutions for water problems.
June 15, 2020 – Healthy Streams, Healthy Communities, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
The health of our streams is reflective of all that we do on and to the land. This webinar will discuss how we assess the quality and health of our local streams, dive into stream ecology and wrap up with the issues our streams face and how we can all be a part of protecting and improving water quality in the communities that we live in.
June 11, 2020 – Saving Dark Skies, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Adam Kreuzer of the International Dark Skies Association talks about the importance of reducing light pollution, how we can reduce our own light pollution, and more.
June 8, 2020 – Talking to Your Neighbors About Conservation, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Sometimes we don’t all see eye-to-eye. Things that seem important to us, aren’t even on other people’s radars. No matter your political leanings, conservation matters to everyone. The Conservation Foundation conducted polls of people in the Chicago region to learn what conservation issues matter to people on BOTH sides of the political aisle.
June 2, 2020 – Organic Gardening, Hosted by The Conservation Foundation
Learn tips and techniques for having your own organic garden at home. TCF educator Connie discusses organic pest control methods, companion planting, and much more!
May 14, 2020 – Fireflies The Jewels of the Night, Hosted by Xerces Society
Join Candace Fallon, Xerces Biologist, as she takes us into the world of the firefly. Learn about their life history, the threats they face, and what you can do to help these incredible insects.