The Insect Awareness & Appreciation Day 2015

Praying Mantis is Appreciated
Having fun – IAAD-2015
Curiosity – up close

“By What circumstances a strong curiosity about nature is sustained in some individuals is not known, but this, whatever the cause is the naturalist’s magnificent blessing. He wants to understand the earth; He keeps asking questions and looking for answers.” From Dr. Richard Graber’s, On The Naturalist Nature Of Man.

This year at Illinois Audubon Society’s, War Bluff Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, another Insect Awareness and Appreciation Day brought together naturalists, with young people just learning about the natural world, in the hope of sustaining that strong curiosity about nature in them.

As caretaker of the Sanctuary I personally and on behalf of the Society wish to thank all the presenters for their dedication to nurturing this curiosity about nature to our participants. Also a heartfelt thanks to those volunteers from the Shawnee Chapter of the Illinois Audubon Society for their selfless dedication of stewardship to make each event pleasurable, fun, and safe.

Volunteers needed in the heart of Lusk Creek Wilderness

Lusk CreekVolunteers are being sought to participate in a clean up along Lusk Creek on Saturday, September 7, 2013, to help remove trash and debris on property owned by Illinois Audubon Society.   “Those who can help will get an opportunity to visit one of the most beautiful and remote areas in Southern Illinois,” says John Wallace, local steward and member of the Illinois Audubon Society’s Board of Directors.

This event is sponsored locally by the Illinois Audubon Society’s Shawnee Chapter with help from the US Forest Service.

Volunteers are asked to meet at Shawnee Mart on State Rte 145 in Eddyville at 9:30 am.   Please wear work boots, bring drinking water, work gloves and a sack lunch. A carpool caravan will depart from Southern Illinois University’s campus at 8:00 am.  For more information, contact John Wallace at 618.457.6367 or

Located in Pope County, Lusk Creek is one of the most wild and unique streams in Illinois.  In an effort to greater protect the stream and the surrounding land Illinois Audubon Society purchased 58 acres of private land that includes a portion of the stream in 2007.  The Illinois Audubon Society tract is in the center of the Lusk Creek Wilderness area on the Shawnee National Forest.  Over millions of years, Lusk Creek, which is known for its clear water and stream inhabitants, has cut a beautiful and dramatic canyon through the sandstone bedrock.  The watershed for the stream also provides numerous habitat types and a high degree of biological diversity.  The Illinois Audubon Society property’s adjoining public land includes an Illinois Nature Preserve, numerous state Natural Areas, a National Natural Landmark and a nationally designated Wilderness.

The mission of the Illinois Audubon Society is to promote the perpetuation and appreciation of native plants and animals and the habitats that support them.  The Illinois Audubon Society is an independent, member supported, not-for-profit, statewide organization.  Founded in 1897, the Society is Illinois’ oldest private conservation organization with over 2300 members, 21 chapters and 16 affiliate groups.   The Illinois Audubon Society has protected over 3000 acres by investing more than $6.6 million to protect land and water throughout Illinois.

Stewardship Day at War Bluff Valley Sanctuary

Stewardship of War Bluff Valley Sanctuary rests with the Shawnee Chapter. The second Saturday of every month is War Bluff Stewardship Day where you get a chance to volunteer your time and talents while spending a day in the wild working and socializing with others who value nature as much as you do.

Stewardship projects in April will include garlic mustard removal by hand, checking bluebird nest boxes, and trail grooming. It’s always a good idea to email or call Terri at 618-683-2222 before coming out to make sure there has not been a cancellation due to weather or for other pertinent information.