Park News & Writings

The Blue Jay

February 13, 2014

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Blue Jays sometimes get a bad rap in the birding world.  They are famous for bullying smaller birds at the feeders, dominating the nests of other birds and sometimes eating eggs and nestlings of other birds.  Plus…they are super noisy!  BUT, their loud squawks serve a purpose – most times they are the first to announce the presence of … Continue Reading

The Aging Juvenile Bald Eagle

January 23, 2014

One of the girls in the office was looking at a photo that I took of a juvenile bald eagle and asked – how can you tell how old they are in that photo?  It made me ponder that thought and then do some research.  Here is some information on what I was able to find on the web.

The … Continue Reading

Return of the Eagles

January 10, 2014

Over 2,000 of these magnificent birds make their winter homes along the Illinois and Mississippi rivers. They begin arriving as early as mid-December and stay through early March, depending on the weather. The river’s dams provide plentiful fish for the eagles, and the wooded bluffs overlooking the Mississippi offer excellent roosting (and sometimes nesting) possibilities.

Bald eagles in flight are … Continue Reading

Local Indian History

November 20, 2013

Archaic Hut_smallIndians have lived within this park since 8000 BC.  The first inhabitants were called the Archaic Indians.  Through the centuries, Woodland, Hopewellian, and Mississippi Indian cultures have flourished in this area.  The Indian culture we have the most knowledge about is the historic Illinois Indians because they were here and written about in the diaries of the first Europeans that … Continue Reading

Leaf Changing Facts!

October 23, 2013

Why do leaves change color?

As the Earth makes its 365-day journey around the sun, some parts of the planet will get fewer hours of sunlight at certain times of the year. In those regions, the days become shorter and the nights get longer. The temperature slowly drops. Autumn comes, and then winter.

Trees respond to the decreasing amount of … Continue Reading

Photography at Starved Rock!

September 17, 2013

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Did you know that Starved Rock Lodge hosts it’s own Photography Club?   The idea was brought to the attention of Terry Cross (CEO of Starved Rock Lodge) and was quickly supported as a way to give photographers a way to get together once a month, share ideas and tips, and enjoy the natural beauty of Starved Rock, Matthiessen and Buffalo … Continue Reading

Hummingbird Facts

August 30, 2013

 

 

There are a lot of great facts about this little bird.  They are one of the most interesting birds to me and one of my favorites.  They will be leaving the park soon to head back to warmer climates.  I thought I would share some great facts on these little creatures…

*  A hummingbird’s brain is 4.2% of … Continue Reading

Kaskaskia Canyon History

June 7, 2013

Copy of IMG_8971Home to Water Horsetail, an Illinois grass that Native Americans used as straws, this stunning canyon got it’s name from the Grand Village of Illinois.  The Kaskaskia tribe was the largest group of Indians in Illinois at the time.  When French explorers, de La Salle, Tonty and Hennepin arrived in 1679/80 Hennepin recorded that, “there were about 460 lodges, arranged … Continue Reading

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