A Lockport woman has fond memories of her 'Happy Place' outings with her ill mother at Rock Run Rookery Preserve.
The event schedule offers a wide range of activities that are sprinkled throughout the year to inspire patrons to revisit sites they already love and to motivate others to discover a new place to enjoy the outdoors. Art, food, nature and fitness are all on tap as we get underway for some fun in '21.
Deer can't escape the cold during a long, harsh winter, so how do they survive? They rely on a combination of adaptations and behavioral changes to make it through the cold winter months.
Woodpeckers can peck up to 12,000 times a day! So how do they do it without hurting their brains?
Deer antlers seem to grow overnight, and in reality they actually do. A buck's antlers can grow a quarter inch a day, but it's a process that requires a lot of energy.
Ever shiver at the sight of birds on the ice in the dead of winter? No need to worry. Geese and other waterfowl are built to withstand these harsh conditions.
Downy woodpeckers are the smallest woodpecker in North America. Learn more about these birds in this creature feature.
Each night as darkness falls, we begin to wind down our day, eventually settling in for sleep. For many animals, however, these same cues that signal the end of our day mean it’s time to start theirs.
A 40-acre Homer Township purchase will expand Hadley Valley Preserve and provide a missing link for a Spring Creek Greenway Trail extension, and a 40-acre Washington Township donation will begin the establishment of a new eastern Will County preserve.
These two look-alike birds can be hard to distinguish, but there are a few ways to tell them apart.
If you've ever taken a walk outside after it rains, you know that worms tend to congregate above ground after wet weather. The reason why is a mystery, although scientists have a few theories.
Bobcats are the most abundant wildcats in the United States, but that doesn't mean you're likely to run into one. These elusive cats are masters at remaining unseen.
Loved or reviled, the raccoon is one of the most common mammals in Illinois.
You woke up to a blanket of fog covering the neighborhood, but where did it come from?
Where is your forest preserve 'Happy Place?' For the Webers of Joliet, Hammel Woods is their go-to spot for hikes.
3/3/2021: Learn how Joliet earned its nickname The City of Steel and Stone and about the backbreaking work done by thousands of immigrants at the city's steel mills and quarries.
Among birds, woodpeckers stand out for their uniqueness. Learn what sets them apart from other birds.
3/7/2021: Pick up specific beekeeping tips or simply learn more about the world of beekeeping.
With its crimson cap and stunning black and white wings, the red-headed woodpecker is a beauty among birds.
Vince Stellato is teaching his two sons to appreciate and absorb nature and to pick up litter on their fequent jaunts to Hammel Woods.
Our birds are disappearing at an alarming rate. Saving them may seem overwhelming, but there are many simple things you can do at home to help.
What happens to animals during a prescribed burn? Most are able to safely escape the flames. In fact, these burns are designed specifically to minimize injury and death to animals and, as a result, create healthier habitats for them.
Creatures come in all sizes, shapes and colors, but not all colors are represented equally. Find out why blue is so rare in the animal kingdom.
The Forest Preserve District's 127 miles of trails, six dog parks, sled hills, campgrounds and outdoor and online programs will keep you moving all season long. So, head outside to soak in some vitamin D, drop a few pounds and absorb the beauty of nature.
The American badger isn't as well-known as many of the other mammals that call Will County home, but these fascinating creatures are exceptional diggers that are known to work alongside coyotes to hunt.
Photographing wildlife can be an adventure, but the woodchuck is an easy subject.
In the past four years alone, Greg Duffner has racked up more than 19,000 miles on his bike commuting to work and riding in charity events around the country.
Isle a la Cache Museum immerses visitors in our cultural heritage and natural history. The museum transports visitors back to the 18th century, when "Illinois Country" was home to the fur trade.
Have you ever noticed that some snow is particularly sparkly or glittery? Scientists call it 'snow sparkle,' an effect caused by sunlight reflecting off ice crystals in the snow.
In the five years he has lived across the river from the Hastert-Bechstein preserve, Mike Nagrocki been transformed into a wildlife photographer and bird-watcher and it has become his 'Happy Place' and backyard haven.
5/2/2021: Take in the forest floor painted with the pinks, reds, blues and white of wildflowers in bloom and take photos while you hike.
Even so, when given the choice, most of us choose to spend most of our time indoors. Animals, though, don't exactly have a choice.
4/24/2021: Join us for a guided hike in search of amazing waterfowl, soaring eagles and beautiful songbirds.
The Plum Creek Nature Center offers visitors a place to explore the natural world, with hands-on exhibits and interactive play elements.
How do turtles breathe while they are underwater all winter? By breathing through their butts, so to speak.
4/25/2021: Take in the forest floor painted with the pinks, reds, blues, and white of wildflowers in bloom and take photos while you hike.