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Naturalist News

Welcome to Naturalist News

Did you ever splash in mud puddles as a kid? How about climb a tree or catch lightning bugs in a jar? If so, you just might be a naturalist.

Illinois Master Naturalists are individuals who continue to explore, wonder, and enjoy nature in all of her glory, warts and all. Truth be told, they are individuals who never stopped learning about the world around them and seeing the wonder that is everywhere. They volunteer to help others connect with the more-than human world and build strong, resilient communities based on high-quality scientific information.

Each week, the Naturalist News blog will bring you stories highlighting the individuals, places and the other species that make our communities such amazing places. Naturalist News profiles individuals like you, who are helping their community conserve, connect with and learn about their environment. This blog is for trained Master Naturalists and those whose hearts are all naturalist.

And Illinois is so much more than just corn, soybeans and Chicago. So, join us as we explore forests, wetlands, tallgrass prairies and all of the unique ecosystems contained within our borders to understand what makes each of these areas irreplaceable.

Not all of our community members are human either, so enjoy profiles on these other extraordinary community members as well. From native species like the downy woodpecker to invasive species like garlic mustard, find out how they fit into and impact our larger community.

Discover how Master Naturalists are impacting their neighborhoods through the projects they support. From conservation efforts to education, Master Naturalists reach scores of community members each and every day. Uncover the details about all of the inspiring projects they have worked tirelessly to create.

And last but not least, follow us as we share the current happenings in the natural world. Is this the time of year when the geese or Monarch butterflies start migrating? When is the next meteor shower expected? Naturalist News tells you what to expect in “your neck of the woods”.

We hope you join us each week to learn something new, be inspired and become connected to your own community by recognizing the amazing ways we are all intertwined in this place we call home.


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Naturalist News is a blog by University of Illinois Extension Master Naturalist staff and volunteers who bring you stories highlighting the individuals, places, wildlife, and plants that make this state amazing. Join us each week to learn something new, be inspired and become connected to your own community by recognizing the amazing ways we are all intertwined.