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Hidden away in Southern Illinois is one of Nature's masterpieces.  

Events & Activities

🦋 Printer Friendly Calendar

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, events and programs are may be canceled in order to help protect public health. While we encourage you to continue enjoying the Cache, please make sure you Recreate Responsibly! Remember to socially distance yourself from others, wear a face covering when distancing isn't available, practice proper hygiene and stay home if you are sick. Please monitor for local public health advisories, orders and closures as they may occur.

You are invited to attend the 4th annual Fall Migration “Mini-Sit” on Saturday, October 16, from 9:00 a.m. to noon. A “mini-sit" is a bird watching event where our objective is to record as many bird species that we can by sight and sound for a set 3 hour period. Birdwatchers of all levels are invited to sit back, relax, and enjoy fall migration. Pack your binoculars or scope, camera, lawn chair, snacks and a lunch to enjoy the event. Each team will choose an ebird hotspot within the Cache River Watershed and sit in a “24 foot” diameter circle tallying all birds seen within and from the circle. To comply with COVID-19 guidelines, please maintain 6 foot social-distancing measures within your circle. Groups are limited to ten participants per hotspot. This event is free and open to the public.

In lieu of a potluck, bring your own bagged lunch and lawn chairs to the Cache River Wetlands Center: 8885 IL-37, Cypress, IL 62923, for a socially-distanced picnic outdoors from noon to 1:30 p.m. The picnic allows communication across teams, so we can share our sightings. How many species can we identify? Register online for your ebird hotspot today at: go.illinois.edu/minisit or by calling: 618-657-2064.

Teams must pre-register their locations by Sunday, October 10, and provide contact information of their participants (name, address, phone number, email address, team affiliation ie: Master Gardener, Master Naturalist, Shawnee Chapter of the Audubon Society, Southern Illinois Audubon Society, etc. and preferred hotspot). Maps and directions to your hotspot will be emailed to you. If you have questions, contact Kimberly Rohling at [email protected]


The Christmas Bird Count on December 20, 2021 will be the 29th year for this CBC. Anyone interested in participating in this citizen science volunteer opportunity should let the compiler know prior to 12/13/2021 by contacting him via email ([email protected]). Participants can hike in bottomland forest all day or drive/hike in areas that are a mixture of agriculture, grassland, forest, and wetland habitats. See if you live in the count circle and count from the comfort of your home. We historically have had some of the highest species totals for Illinois, as well as high counts for several species.


Because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, there will be no meeting before or after the count this year. Activities must comply with all current state and municipal COVID-19 guidelines. Areas to cover will be assigned prior to the count and results will be emailed to the compiler (Jeff Hoover: [email protected]) as soon as is convenient. It is great fun, join us if you can.


Because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, there will be no meeting before or after the count this year. The National Audubon Society has the following guidance that we will be following:

1. Cancel all in-person compilation gatherings.

2. Social distancing and/or masking are required at all times in the field.

3. Carpooling may only occur within existing familiar or social “pod” groups.

4. Activities must comply with all current state and municipal COVID-19 guidelines.

Areas to cover will be assigned prior to the count and results will be emailed to the compiler (Jeff Hoover: [email protected]) as soon as is convenient. It is great fun, join us if you can.

Every year since 1989, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) has sponsored the National Junior Duck Stamp Art Contest, and the results for Illinois are in.

 

2021 Best of Show for Illinois is a black-bellied whistling duck in acrylic paint by Naransolongo Batgerel of Naperville, Illinois. The display of winning art of each age category, K-3, 4-6, 7-9, 10-12, in a variety of mediums may be seen at Cache River State Natural Area, Barkhausen-Cache River Wetlands Center, 8885 State Route 37 South, Cypress, Illinois until June 30, 2021.  

Web site U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service - Migratory Bird Program | Conserving America's Birds (fws.gov)

 

The Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Program is a dynamic art- and science-based curriculum that teaches wetland and waterfowl conservation to students in kindergarten through high school. The program encourages students to explore their natural world, invites them to investigate biology and wildlife management principles and challenges them to express and share what they have learned with others.

 

By 2000, the program included all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. territories. The program encourages partnerships among federal and state government agencies, nongovernment organizations, businesses, and volunteers to help recognize and honor thousands of teachers and students throughout the United States for their participation in conservation-related activities.

 

What is a Junior Duck Stamp?

The Junior Duck Stamp is a pictorial stamp produced by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to recognize the conservation efforts of young people and support environmental and conservation education programs in the United States. The art competition is the culmination of students' study of waterfowl and wetlands conservation in the classroom, homeschool, or non-formal education setting, often using the Junior Duck Stamp Program educational curriculum.

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