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Explore Cicadas of Illinois

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2024 is a big year for periodical cicadas in Illinois! Two broods will emerge at the same time throughout much of the state as soil temperatures reach 64 F. Besides the noise, which may be substantial, this large group of insects is harmless and can be appreciated and enjoyed by nature lovers of all ages. Learn about the timing, habits, and lifecycles of periodical cicadas and discover how periodical broods differ from Illinois' annual, or dog-day, cicadas.

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Plan Your Garden

Growing your own produce brings many rewards. Plan your garden space and find out when to plant your favorite vegetables and fruit in each Illinois plant hardiness zone.

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Grow Your Food Business

Learn about the laws, certifications, processes, and practices required to run a home-based cottage food operation safely and legally in Illinois.

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Spring Into Summer

Beat the heat this summer and learn how to help birds, plants, pollinators, trees, and gardens thrive with resources from our newest issue of Gardeners Corner.

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Specialist and migratory birds at greater risk under climate change

URBANA, Ill. — Following decades of decline, even fewer birds will darken North American skies by the end of the century, according to a new analysis by scientists at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Their study is the first to examine the long-term effects of climate change on the…

A ruby-throated hummingbird visiting a purple blazing prairie star plant.

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URBANA, Ill. — Hummingbirds are unlike any other bird. Spanning the Americas with over 330 species, hummingbirds belong to Trochilidae, the second-largest bird family in the world. However, only the ruby-throated hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) inhabits the Midwest. This hummingbird…

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