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Vermont Cemetery: From Human History to Natural History

The 37-acre preserve contains a one-acre portion of the site was dedicated as an Illinois Nature Preserve and is the final resting place of the early settlers of Wheatland Township.

Hammel Woods: A Miller's Tale

Tucked away at the southern tip of Hammel Woods, near the small dam across the DuPage River, is Grinton Grove, the site that William Grinton built a flour mill in 1845. The small settlement that arose around it was the origin of today’s Village of Shorewood.

Slowing Water's Roll

One of the benefits of preserving open space is the amount of water the preserves hold, which helps sustain wildlife habitats, reduces flooding and replenishes underground aquifers.

Keep Your Eyes Peeled for These Unusual Plants in the Preserves

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

What's the Difference?: Dragonfly vs. Damselfly

Is that big, buzzing insect a dragonfly or a damselfly? Learn how to tell the difference.

Creature Feature: The Awesome Osprey

Osprey or eagle? Learn what sets the osprey apart from other birds of prey.

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.

D.C. Duck Ramp Proves Sometimes Nature Just Needs a Boost

They took to it like a duck to water, naturally.

From Tracks to Trails

The District has repurposed abandoned rail lines to recreational trails

Time to Talk Turkey

Once extinct in Illinois, wild turkeys can now be found in every county.

Wonderfully Wild Snakes of Will County

The slither. They climb. They freak people out. But don't worry, the locals are harmless.

When Bald Eagles Go Fishing, It's Quite a Catch

Bald eagles are some of most beautiful birds you'll see — and thankfully still can — now that they've bounced back after conservation efforts helped them come back from the brink of extinction.

What’s in a Name?

When it comes to the preserves, it's often a connection to the past.

Our Top Instagram Photos of 2020

One thing is clear: Everyone loves wildlife shots.

Nature Curiosity: Do Animals Get Sunburned?

If you've ever spent a long day in the sun with no sunscreen, you've probably paid the price in the form of a bad sunburn. But are animals at risk for painful sunburns too?

Avoid dehydration and heat illnesses with these tips

Stay hydrated and avoid heat illnesses during the dog days of summer with these tips.

For Barb Ferry, Raising Monarchs Is More Than a Hobby

Barb Ferry has been raising monarch butterflies at home and releasing them into the wild, with the ultimate goals of helping sustain their population and educating the public of their importance.

Quiz: Are You A Water Snake Expert?

Find out by answering these 10 questions.

What's the Difference: Chipmunk vs. Ground Squirrel

Is that a chipmunk or a ground squirrel scurrying around your yard in preparation for winter? Learn how to tell the difference between these two similar-looking rodents.

Quiz: Are You an Authority on Raccoons?

Find out by answering these 10 questions.

Turtle Hit by Car in Morris Lives on Through Hatchlings

Turtle hit by car in Morris lives on through surviving hatchlings that have been placed in a Blanding's turtle recovery program.

Orioles Are a Sweet Spring Treat

Enjoy them while you can — because they'll be gone before you know it

What's the Difference?: Wild Parsnip vs. Golden Alexander

Knowing the difference between wild parsnip and golden alexander could save you from a painful, burning rash.

Winter Seeding Leads to Spring Sprouts

The cold-weather seed distribution of around 350 different plant species is scheduled for 14 preserves throughout Will County.

'Don't Be A Jerk' Campaign Takes to the Water

While jerks out in the preserves can cause a number of problems for normal, everyday visitors, jerks on the water can be even more problematic.

Quiz: Are You Savvy About Queen Snakes?

Can you ace this 10-question quiz?

What's the Difference?: Sharp-shinned Hawk vs. Cooper's Hawk

Can't tell the difference between a Cooper's hawk and a sharp-shinned hawk? You're not alone. These two birds are strikingly similar in appearance, but there's a few things to look for to help tell them apart.

Nature Curiosity: How Do Birds Learn To Fly?

Birds don't hatch knowing how to fly. Much like babies learning to walk, learning to fly is a process for baby birds, one that often involves a lot of trial and error.

Creature Feature: The Beloved American White Pelican

American white pelicans make their presence known in Will County twice a year, so get to know more about these biannual visitors in our creature feature.

Forest Preserve Serves as Forensic Entomology Classroom for Law Enforcement

Thirty members of law enforcement recently scooped, plucked and netted insects from pig carcasses during a death investigation entomology workshop at a rural forest preserve.

Nature Curiosity: How Do Spiders Make Silk?

Spider silk is stronger than any other fiber on Earth, but how do these eight-legged creatures make it? They are specially equipped for making silk, with glands and structures designed for just that purpose.

Think Twice Before Your Drop That Apple Core on the Ground; It's Still Littering

Food scraps don't decompose as fast as you might think, so leaving your apple cores and banana peels behind is bad news for many reasons.

Don't Be a Butthead; Dispose of Cigarettes Properly

Trillions of cigarettes are littered each year, creating a lasting impact for the environment. And now, with the rising popularity of e-cigarettes, litter from smoking includes both hazardous and electronic waste.

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