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2020 Picnic and Camping Permits Now on Sale

Permits can be purchased online or in person at Forest Preserve visitor centers on a first-come, first-served basis.

Calendar Dog, Dumped at High-Kill Shelter, Still Needs A Home

Lollipop, who was dumped by her family shortly after giving birth to a litter of puppies, was rescued by the Will County Humane Society. The 1-year-old dog, who has medically gone from a "hot mess express" to a miracle case, now needs a loving home.

History-Rich Iron Works turns 20

After peeling back the layers, this unique preserve conserves a piece of the 'City of Steel's' heritage.

Thanksgiving Truths (Zoom webinar)

11/19/2020: Learn the true story about Thanksgiving, which is a lot more convoluted, interesting and dark than what you probably learned in school.

Owl Prowl

11/14/2020: Explore the secrets that our forests hold in the evening hours and search for the elusive winged predator, the owl.

Do You Have Bats Living Nearby? State Researchers Want To Know

If you know of bats living on your property or nearby, you can submit the information to researchers studying bats in Illinois.

Owl Prowl

11/13/2020: Explore the secrets that our forests hold in the evening hours and search for the elusive winged predator, the owl.

Things We Love: Those Rascally Raccoons

Raccoons have a well-earned reputation for being trash bandits, but they deserve our respect too.

Creature Feature: The Playful River Otter

River otters once nearly disappeared from Illinois, but these playful creatures have rebounded, thanks to a successful conservation program.

Monee Reservoir

The Monee Reservoir Visitor Center offers a variety of educational and recreational opportunities

Your Guide to Paddling Will County

The preserves offer excellent canoeing and kayaking opportunities on our local waterways

Rabid Raccoons? Nope ... Police Say They're Just Drunk Raccoons

Dealing with drunk, disorderly and sometimes wild creatures of the night is nothing new for police, but in this case, authorities in a West Virginia town weren't dealing with a pedestrian disturbance.

I&M Canal Trail

The I&M Canal Trail travels 7.57 miles from the Joliet Iron Works Historic Site north through Lockport to Romeoville.

Fall Color Walk

11/15/2020: Walk the trails of Thorn Creek Woods among trees of all species as they transition from summer to shades of red, yellow, orange, gold, russet and even purple – the colors of autumn.

Forest Preserve Dog Parks Now Open

Changing recommendations from the CDC and state modifications to its COVID-19 response paved the way for the dog parks to reopen; but the Forest Preserve urges dog park patrons to follow all public safety advice to protect their health and the health of others.

Diver Gives Us Shocking Look at How Much Trash is in Waterways

When Rich Horner went for a dive to check out some marine life, he found 'so much plastic' instead.

Woods Walk

11/1/2020: Get out and get moving! It’s the return of 'Woods Walk'!

Creature Feature: Opossums Are Nature's Pest Control

Opossums are so ugly that they're cute, but beyond their appearances we should appreciate them for their amazing pest control abilities.

Turn Your Eyes to Skies for Migrating Birds

You'll see a wide variety of feathered friends heading south for the winter.

The War on Dandelions Is Killing Bees, But It Doesn't Have To

As we prepare to declare war on dandelions, it's important to remember just how important these 'weeds' are for bees.

Nature Curiosity: How Do Migratory Birds Know Where To Go?

Many birds travel hundreds if not thousands of miles twice each year during their migration with no map to guide them. How do they know what route to take?

Hammel Woods

Hammel Woods has two shelters available, located at the Crumby Recreation Area and Route 59 Access, and a permit is required for all groups of 25 or more to use a shelter.

28-Inch Catfish Is Biggest Beast In This Year's 'Big Fish' Contest

Three anglers will receive $100 gift cards for hooking the biggest bass, catfish and panfish, and one grand prize winner was drawn from all the entries.

What's the Difference?: Reptile vs. Amphibian

Is a snake a reptile or an amphibian? How about a frog? These two classes of animals have some similarities, but some key characteristics also set them apart.

Creature Feature: The Ubiquitous Garter Snake

The garter snake is the most common snake in the United States, living from coast to coast. But these snakes are still interesting creatures, despite being ubiquitous.

Creature Feature: The Crafty Raccoon

Loved or reviled, the raccoon is one of the most common mammals in Illinois.

Hey, What's the Deal With Those Bales in the Preserves?

Late summer and fall are the time for hay bales to appear in the preserves during the annual harvest program the Forest Preserve District uses to keep woody and weedy plants at bay.

Creature Feature: The Mysterious Mink

The mysterious mink lives across Illinois, but are not often seen by humans.

Quiz: Can You Ace This River Otter Quiz?

Test your knowledge on this 10-question quiz.

Quiz: What's Your Belted Kingfisher IQ?

This 10-question quiz will test your knowledge.

Goodenow Grove Nature Preserve

The 891-acre Goodenow Grove Nature Preserve was acquired between 1938 and 2007. The preserve is part of the Plum Creek preservation system, which conserves more than 2,300 acres

A Death Trap for Wildlife: Improperly Disposed of Fishing Line

Fishing line seems like an innocuous tool, but in reality it's a death trap for untold numbers of wildlife.

Avoid these plants to save yourself from painful rashes, blindness – even death

Here’s a closer look at some of the plants that can cause you harm and are best avoided.

Keep Your Eyes Peeled for These Unusual Plants in the Preserves

From cactus to carnivorous plants, there are some surprises in the preserves

Plum Creek Greenway Trail

The Plum Creek Greenway Trail travels 3.15 miles through Goodenow Grove Nature Preserve.

A Plant That Does What It's Told? Obedient Plant Isn't Just a Misnomer

The name obedient plant may seem like a misnomer, but the flowers of this plant can be turned in any direction and will stay in place once moved.

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