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Bird watching among activities planned by MCCD

Published: Tuesday, May 27, 2014 11:25 a.m. CDT • Updated: Saturday, May 31, 2014 10:05 p.m. CDT

WOODSTOCK – Spying hummingbirds, bobolinks and sparrows will be the goal of participants in upcoming McHenry County Conservation District programming.

The conservation district has a number of programs lined up for infants to adults. All the programs require advanced registration.

They include:

• Discovery Days: 10 to 11:30 a.m. Friday, June 6, at Boone Creek Conservation Area, 916 Cold Springs Road, Bull Valley. Activities, including playing games, making a craft and eating a snack, will revolve around a special theme of the day. This program is for children 2 to 6 years old accompanied by an adult. It is free for county residents and $3 for non-residents. The registration deadline is June 2.

• Grassland Gazing: 7 to 9 a.m. Saturday, June 7, at North Branch Conservation Area, 11500 North Keystone Road, Richmond. On this walk, participants will search for grassland birds, including the Henslow's sparrow, dickcissel, bobolink and grasshopper sparrow. Attendees should be 14 years and older, and should bring binoculars and field guides if they have them. The program is free for county residents and $2 for non-residents. The registration deadline is June 3.

• Hovering Hummingbirds: 2 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, June 7, at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road, Crystal Lake. During this program, children 4 to 12 years old accompanied by an adult will learn about hummingbirds and create functioning hummingbird feeders to take home. The cost is $2 for county residents and $3 for non-residents. The registration deadline is June 3.

• Nature’s Play Time: 10 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 11, at The Hollows Conservation Area, 3804 Route 14, Cary. Infants to five-year-olds will use nature to build skills. A snack will be provided, but accompanying adults should bring sun screen, extra water, long sleeves or pants in case there are a lot of bugs. The program is free for county residents and $3 for non-residents. The registration deadline is June 7.

• Mudpies: 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, June 14, at Harrison Benwell Conservation Area, 7055 McCullom Lake Road, Wonder Lake.  This free program allows kids six to 13 years old to explore the creek and surrounding wetlands. Attendees should wear old clothes and shoes. The registration deadline is June 10.

• Bubbling Bobolinks: 6 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 17, at the Kettle Lot in Glacial Park Conservation Area, Route 31 and Harts Road, Ringwood. This evening walk will go in search of grassland birds followed by a gathering and refreshments at the Powers-Walker House. Attendees, who should be 14 and up, should bring binoculars and field guides if they have them. The program is free for county residents and $2 for non-residents. The registration deadline is June 13.

Registration is accepted online at www.MCCDistrict.org, by phone (free programs only) at 815-479-5779, by mail and walk-in at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road in Crystal Lake, or walk-in only at Lost Valley Visitor Center, Route 31 and Harts Road in Ringwood.

- Northwest Herald

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