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May's 'Buzz' Nature Show Focuses on Wildflowers, Turtle Dogs and Salamanders

Photo for: May

"The Buzz" host Suzy Lyttle. (Photo by Chad Merda)

May’s episode of “The Buzz,” the Forest Preserve District’s monthly nature show, features the beauty of spring wildflowers, the dedication of turtle dogs and an “adorable” species of salamanders.

Season 2, episode 5 of the show will air at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 26, on the Forest Preserve District of Will County’s Facebook and YouTube pages.

The wildflower segment was filmed at Messenger Woods Nature Preserve, which is known for its bounty of spring ephemerals, including the much-loved Virginia bluebells.

“We will show you bluebells, but also some other species you may see while out hiking, including Jack-in-the-Pulpit, which doesn’t look like a flower, and Mayapples, which hides its flower,” said program host Suzy Lyttle. “There are so many cool features on these plants that I hope it inspires viewers to take a second look at these blooms.”

The show’s second segment will highlight a pack of turtle-hunting Boykin spaniels, which visited a southern Will County preserve to search for turtles.

“These furry friends helped us find the state-threatened ornate box turtle,” Lyttle said. “The goal is to learn more about these turtles’ movements, population, and nesting success so that we can help them out with better land management practices. It is so great to give the public an insider view on this topic.”

The segment also shows that threatened and endangered species don’t just live in far-away places such as jungles and savannas, Lyttle said.

“We have lots of critters and plants right in our own forest preserves that could use our love and help to keep the ecosystem strong and balanced!”

This month’s Buzz Bit features one of Lyttle’s favorite animals, the blue-spotted salamander.

"They are just adorable, with big eyes and wide smiles,” she said.

This is the time of year salamanders surface from their underground tunnels to migrate to the temporary ponds to mate and lay eggs, Lyttle explained.

“I think I am so fascinated with these creatures because they look like they should be an exotic tropical species, but in reality the Eastern United States is the number one hot spot in the world for salamanders due to its particular habitat of deciduous trees, logs and spring wetlands."

After Wednesday’s broadcast, a recording of the show will be available for viewing on the District's Facebook, YouTube and Instagram pages. “The Buzz” also airs on cable stations in Joliet, Naperville, New Lenox, Romeoville and Tinley Park.



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