Photo of a boy holding a magnifying glass and smiling

Christmas means good times, and we’ve had a lot of good times this year

December 22, 2015

The best photos at Christmastime are always the ones that include children. Whether those kids have a huge smile while opening presents, a sparkle in their eyes while sitting on their grandparents’ laps or a mischievous grin while playing with their cousins or friends, those photos are always special. So…

Photo of a deer hoof print in the snow

Top 10 winter activities in our county parks

December 16, 2015

We live in Iowa because we like seasons. If we didn’t like seeing leaves bud in the spring and fall in autumn, if we didn’t like to see snowflakes dust the ground, if we didn’t like to a warm fire outside on a cool evening, we would all live in…

Photo of flower seed heads in the snow

Take a stroll through Horseshoe Bend Wildlife Area

December 8, 2015

Crunch, slide, pant. Crunch, slide, pant. Crunch, crunch, pant. Those were about the only sounds interrupting the peaceful stillness at Horseshoe Bend Wildlife Area just south of Milford Tuesday. The snow crunched beneath my feet as I walked, and about every other step partially slid down the first hill I…

Photo of naturalist holding a trumpeter swan

View trumpeter swans year-round in Kenue Park

December 2, 2015

Last year, when the wetland at Kenue Park froze over, our naturalists had the pleasure of wrangling our two rehabilitated and flightless trumpeter swans. Because we didn’t have an aerator, the swans were moved to Buena Vista County to winter in a wetland that had open water they could use…

Photo of snowy plain

Taking a break at Superior Marsh

November 24, 2015

I sat in the county’s Ford Escape writing this, because I had some time on my hands that I didn’t want to waste. The view outside the window is quite nice. Dried prairie grasses, sticking out above the pure white snow, billow in the breeze. The bright sun shines down,…

Photo of people walking through the snow

A walk in not-so-great weather

November 18, 2015

I was talking to radio personality George Bower yesterday, and we chatted about our November and December Hike the Wild programs for our next radio spot. He brought up the topic of weather and if we would hold the hikes in yucky weather. Of course, we take safety into consideration,…

Photo of the Orleans Beach sign

Take a seat at Ainsworth-Orleans Beach

November 12, 2015

I grew up along the Mississippi River, and many memories surround that water for me. Feeding ducks and geese, taking walks along the shore, attempting to waterski, watching it rise and fall with spring rains and dry summer days. The hardest part of college was not being near water, and…

Photo of a dock jutting into the water

A stroll through Westport Park

November 4, 2015

I hate to admit this publicly, but I had not been to Dickinson County Conservation’s Westport Park until yesterday. We are always a little surprised when people come into the nature center and have lived in the area for years without ever visiting before. However, it’s the same way with…

Photo of a prairie overlook in the fall

A stroll through Judd Wildlife Area

October 28, 2015

At the end of summer, Snapchat had a feed where users from Iowa could post videos to share with the rest of the world. My husband and I took our dog on a walk through the Dickinson County Conservation Board’s Judd Wildlife Area south of Milford, and we took a…

Photo of trees along the Little Sioux River

A stroll through the Little Sioux Savanna

October 21, 2015

The Dickinson County Conservation Board has two new parcels of land on 195th Avenue, south of County Road A-34 in Milford. We worked hard this summer at the Little Foote Forest parcel, attempting to eradicate some of the invasive garlic mustard on the plot, but I had yet to walk through…

Photo of Westport Schoolhouse with a red tint

A stroll through Kenue Park

October 14, 2015

The scent of fall is in the air. To me the scent of fall means dry leaves, wood smoke and a hint of chill to the air. Take a breath and it awakens the spirit. My eyes open wider and search for the beautiful change of colors. My lungs take…

Photo of bear bottles of honey

Save the bees, save the honey

October 7, 2015

With all the reasons out there to work to save our bees, one reason is definitely delicious — honey. (Honeybees and their native relatives) Not only is it scrumptious, but it also has many other appealing qualities: 1. Honey doesn’t spoil. The oldest honey was found in the country of…

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