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Celebrate Earth Day by meeting John James Audubon

March 24, 2017
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Photo of Brian Ellis as John James Audubon

While Brian Ellis chatted on the phone, he watched the prairie he had planted outside his home. Grasses blew in the breeze, the soil radiated warmth from the sun and birds were nesting within view. He hopes that when people come to his one-man storytelling production about John James Audubon that they ...

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It’s time to think about spring planting

March 17, 2017
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Photo of a honeybee on a flower

Bring back the bees. Bring back the butterflies. With pollinator populations dropping drastically in recent years, the push to bring them back has spread. But how do we do that? One of the best ways is to plant native flowers and grasses in our landscaping, providing pollinator habitat and food sources. Native plantings ...

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DNR brings Volunteer Wildlife Monitoring program to nature center

March 14, 2017
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Photo of a northern leopard frog

While the winter wind whips and the snow keeps falling it is hard to imagine spring but March brings a glimmer of hope. March is when Iowa’s dedicated frog and toad survey volunteers start listening to their call CD and sharpening their pencils in preparation for the first warm(ish) night in ...

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Spring photography contest accepting entries

March 10, 2017
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The smell of grilled salmon wafted through the trees off West Lake Okoboji. Small black noses twitched and mouths watered as four small raccoons peered over the limbs of a tree to see who was cooking such deliciousness. It was at that exact moment that David Curry, 61 of Dakota Dunes, SD, ...

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If you’re passionate about water quality, check out this program

March 3, 2017
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Photo of a dirty stream

Water quality is a murky issue. Clear it up by participating in the Master River Stewards Program April-May in the Iowa Great Lakes area. “It’s going to be an in-depth program with conservation professionals going over most aspects of water quality,” said Charles Vigdal of the Dickinson County Conservation Board. “Water quality ...

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Summer camp registration opens March 1

February 27, 2017
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Photo of a girl running through a tunnel

Sunshine and summertime — admit it; it’s what’s on your mind. Plan ahead for how much fun your kids can have this summer at the Dickinson County Nature Center in Okoboji as registration for summer camps opens March 1 online. Ages 4-18 have the opportunity to get outside with a variety of ...

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Do bugs freak you out?

February 10, 2017
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Photo of an earwig

“Bugs just freak people out.” Entomologist Emily Fontenot has seen this happen time and time again, people shuddering at the thought of insects, but that reaction is usually not warranted. And the way people deal with bugs is not always the best either. Instead of a spray-first mentality, Fontenot will give alternative ...

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Tips for birding in northwest Iowa

January 6, 2017
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Photo of a house finch catching a worm

A flock of small gray birds appears in your yard, hopping around in the snow eating some seed that has spilled from your backyard bird feeders. Another red-headed bird sits on the feeder, pecking at the sunflower seeds inside. But do you know the names of the species that you see? Local birder ...

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Environmental education coordinator/naturalist position opening

January 4, 2017
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Clipart sign that says "Job Openings"

Open until filled JOB TITLE: Environmental Education Coordinator/Naturalist FLSA: Non-Exempt REPORTS TO: Executive Director SALARY: $42,000-$50,000 plus benefits Job Summary: Under supervision of Executive Director, supervises and conducts educational activities and educational staff in the performance of environmental awareness curriculum. Qualifications: Graduation from an accredited four-year college with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree related to…

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Nature Tots expands to two sessions in 2017

December 30, 2016
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Photo of a child touching a bird's nest

Humans don’t hibernate, so it’s time to get out of the house. Bring your toddler, ages 2-5, to the next Nature Tots Wednesday, Jan. 11, at the Dickinson County Nature Center in Okoboji and go for a Wintertime Walk. “We will focus on snow and how animals survive through the winter,” said ...

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