The Illinois Native Plant Society has put together a list of native plant sales across the state for the spring of 2018.
Friends of the Chicago River is looking for volunteers, families and groups are welcome, to help monitor ospreys, bats, and turtles and their habitats along the river over the summer. There are two training events at REI on Halsted: Wed May 17 at 5:30pm and Sat May 19 at 9:30 am.
Check out reports of ruby-throated hummingbird sightings move up from the southern states as the birds return from their winter migrations. You can add your own report, too, if you join the website.
I love to visit the parks, ponds, and natural areas of southern Delaware when I’m there visiting family. I also enjoy researching local native plants and animals; it’s an interesting climate. I thought I should put my love of exploring the area to good use making some more current pieces to fill out my portfolio and practice some of the more interesting features of design software, such as making graphs in Adobe Illustrator, by creating this infographic on Delaware wildlife and public lands.
Due to some changes in my life, I am looking for a design and/or production job so I have been updating my portfolio. I thought I could highlight some of my production skills with a tri-fold brochure. Looking around for a subject, I came across a little home-printed brochure I picked up at Trap Pond State Park during one of my visits there. I re-entered all the text and built a nice file for it.
While researching my new clip art sets, DIY Wildlife Feeders Clip Art and DIY Wildlife Houses, I consulted a few books and websites. Here are a some that I would recommend to help you with your own similar projects. (Note that the books are Amazon affiliate links.)
Wildlife Gardening A DK book by Martyn Cox from 2009; hardcover 80 pp SLJ (School Library Journal) grades 3-6. This book has a lot of projects reasonably within reach of kids, though most with adult help. All the projects seem to have real, practical use in the garden or for STEM explorations. Because it is British, you will want to swap out plants native to your area for their native recommendations.
Kids’ Easy to Create Wildlife Habitats by Emily Stetson, illustrations by J. Susan Cole Stone from 2004; paperback 128 pp SLJ grades 2-5. Filled with information about backyard wildlife and habitats, including modern problems they face, this book also offers many useful, practical projects for making wildlife-friendly spaces.
The Wildlife-Friendly Vegetable Gardener by Tammi Hartung, illustrations by Holly Ward Bimbo from 2013; paperback 144 pp. A book aimed at adults and filled with charming illustrations on every page. Offers ways to encourage wildlife in a peaceful coexistence with your garden. Includes ideas for feeders and shelters.
The website daviddomoney.com offers a free, downloadable PDF guide to making an insect hotel that appeals to a variety of bugs, plus projects to make shelters for solitary bees, lacewings, or ladybugs.
The greatstems.com blog has a nice collection of wildlife projects for kids, including feeders and shelters.
There is good information on bumblebees and their nesting habitats at bumblebeeconservation.org.
My Pinterest board, Kid’s Gardening, has many other links to related projects.
Thinking about how I like to take nature walks in winter, I recently completed a set of Winter Foliage clip art. Nature may be a little more subtle in winter, but it’s still rewarding. It makes a pretty companion to my Winter Birds drawings. Both are in my TPT shop. [edit – I have closed my TPT shop. Please visit my creative market shop for clip art sets.]
Both are also available as vector art in my creative market shop, too.
I sat down to make some background patterns with acorns and mushrooms and snails and other forest-y things and the project morphed into a set of illustrations of Oak Leaves and Acorns of the Midwest. The list-making part of my mind is always arguing with the scribbly part of my mind and the list-maker won this round.
I have added the Midwest Oak Leaves and Acorns clip art to my creativemarket shop and my teacherspayteachers shop. [edit – I have closed my TPT shop. Please visit my creative market shop for clip art sets.]