The first frogs of spring are beginning to announce their presence, as water temperatures warm and approach 50 degrees. Listen closely near the wetland and you may hear several of the early spring species. Wood frogs are generally one of the earliest to be heard in the spring, with a call that sounds like a duck quacking. Chorus frogs follow soon after with a call that sounds like running your thumb along the teeth of a comb. Spring peepers, true to their name, make a high-pitched peeping sound, and leopard frogs make a call that sounds like snoring. At least two eaglets have been spotted on the CNC eagle nest at the river overlook this past week. These nestlings grow rapidly, adding one pound to their body weight every four or five days. We are excited to provide a home for this new family and to see how they grow throughout the year. Later this month, brown bats will be emerging from hibernation, though they are facing new challenges (see Science News). Keep an eye out on both of our campuses to see which birds are returning from their southern migration. This past week we’ve already sighted bluebirds, soras, phoebes, and many others.
As you make plans to enjoy this beautiful spring weather, please add our upcoming programs and events to your calendar. Space is limited at most programs, so please don't forget to RSVP by calling 651-437-4359.
April 18 - 8:00-9:00 p.m.
During this time of year woodcocks perform a fascinating courtship ritual at dusk. Look and listen for their “sky dance” and mating calls during a guided night hike on our Wisconsin campus (300 East Cove Road, Hudson WI, 54016) led by WI-DNR Wildlife Biologist Missy Sparrow and CNC Executive Director Jen Vieth. Program Fee is $6.00 per person or $4.00 for “Friends of CNC.” Please RSVP at 651-437-4359 and let us know you are coming.
April 19 - 5:30-8:00 p.m.
Help us clean up litter from of our local roads. Bring your favorite litter stabber and let’s make the place beautiful for Earth Day.
April 21 - 10:00-11:00 a.m.
CNC’s Preschool Story Times are designed to introduce young children, ages 2 through 5 (with a parent or guardian), to nature in a fun and safe environment. We’ll listen to stories, spend time outdoors, make an art or craft project and meet live animals. Please call 651-437-4359 to register. Program fee: $5.00 per child or $3.00 per preschooler for “Friends of CNC”; no charge for accompanying adult.
April 28 - 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Have you ever wondered what bird banding is all about? Our bird banders welcome you to see songbirds up close and learn about the birds who share our ecosystem. Banding runs continuously for the full 3 ½ hours but visitors may come and go at any time. Please call ahead so we know you are coming. Donations of bird seed or suet will be greatly appreciated in lieu of a program fee.
April 22 - 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Celebrate birds and conservation at the Hastings Area Earth Day Birding Festival. This is the fifth year the Hastings Environmental Protectors has teamed up with CNC for the Birding Festival. Participate in the Youth Birding Competition. Attend classes and demonstrations that introduce you to raptors, birding, and bird banding. Go on guided bird trips throughout the Hastings area. Event Fee: $5 or $15 with a box lunch. RSVPs Required.
May 13 - 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Learn from bird, insect, reptile, amphibian, and plant experts in a fun day of citizen science as we try to discover how many species are found on the Wisconsin campus. Join inventory teams in the restored prairie and through wooded bluffs to discover, count, and document different types of plants and animal species. No experience necessary, and all ages are welcome. Please RSVP at 651-437-4359 and let us know you are coming. For more information please call Jennifer at CNC at 651-437-4359.
May 21 - 8:00 a.m.
For over 30 years, runners of all abilities have flocked to the St. Croix Valley to support CNC. What better way to welcome spring than a day at CNC running, walking and supporting environmental education. Offering a 2K Fun Run, 5K Run/Walk, 10K & half marathon, this family friendly race has a distance and speed for everyone. Visit the link above for more details.
PROGRAMS AND EVENTS JUST AROUND THE CORNER:
May 6: Minnesota Campus Bird Hike
May 13: Bird Migration Celebration
June 19: Yoga on the River Bluff