Photo of a tractor moving compost

Free mulch and compost at the Dickinson Recycling Center

May 4, 2018

When people bring tree stumps, branches, leaves and grass clippings into the Dickinson Recycling Center, that green waste is seen as just that — waste. However, staff at the recycling center in Milford see that green waste for what it can be — beautiful mulch and healthy compost. All brush…

Photo of a long-horned bee

Native bees: Exotic honeybees and their Apidae family

May 2, 2018

We’ve talked about the ways that native bees differ from honeybees (read that here) and how great of pollinators they are (read that here), but how do you identify native bees? There are seven known families of bees worldwide, and six live in North America: Andrenidae, Apidae, Colletidae, Halictidae, Megachilidae and…

Graphic of the activity book cover

Okoboji Osprey free activity book

April 30, 2018

Click on the image to download our special Okoboji Osprey activity book for free and then click here to watch the osprey live April-September on the nest cam.  

Photo of osprey on the nest

Osprey Diaries: A little late

April 30, 2018

The ice is finally gone! We’ve been quite annoyed that after we arrived back our favorite fishing holes were all covered in ice, and then as soon as we began building our nest it snowed. And I mean snowed. And then a couple of days later it snowed some more.…

Photo of people looking through a scope

Warbler Walk visits Marble Lake in May

April 27, 2018

Bright yellow, striped black and white, patches of blue — the vibrant colors and designs of warblers excite birders who get the treat of seeing them migrate through Iowa. If you would like to check some birds off of your life birding list, join Dickinson County Conservation as it celebrates…

Earth Day trivia graphic

Earth Day trivia quiz

April 24, 2018


Photo of a ring-billed gull

Okoboji seagulls aren’t sea gulls at all

April 23, 2018

There is no such thing as a seagull. All gulls have proper names, none of which is sea. We posted this Noon Nature Fact on our Facebook page last week and had several comments on it. I knew that there were lots of species of gulls, but honestly didn’t realize…

Go on a Spring Scavenger Hunt

April 23, 2018

I don’t really want to sit at my desk today. I want to go outside! This weekend was really the first weekend I felt the warm sun on my skin, and the winds that flew were cool instead of frigid. It felt wonderful, and it finally feels like spring is…

People looking through binoculars

Birding on the Green is perfect for all ages of bird lovers

April 20, 2018

Even with recent snowstorms, birder Ed Thelen isn’t worried about there being birds in the area during the first Birding on the Green event 7 a.m. Monday, May 7. “I think birds migrate on the photo period, so I think it will be the same as usual,” he said. “We…

Will these winter storms affect birds that have come north?

April 18, 2018

We had a call yesterday that someone found a dead robin. Talking to a local birder, a friend of his found a group of eastern phoebes that had all died. The birds that stay in Iowa through the winter are adapted at finding food, but those that migrate and come…

Photo of sweat bee

Honeybees are not native bees, surprised?

April 12, 2018

“I think a lot of people will be surprised to hear honeybees are not native to North or South America; we brought them here for honey production and to pollinate some of our plant species.” (Six ways honeybees differ from native bees) Bryanna Kuhlman, environmental education coordinator for the Dickinson…

Osprey Diaries: Home sweet new home

April 11, 2018

“On the road again. I can’t wait to get on the road again.” The song kept rolling through my head as I sat in beautiful South America, watching the waves roll on the Atlantic Ocean. My wings were just itching to start flying the 4,000 miles that would take me…

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