- Freeport murder suspect Damon Dixson taken into custody in Rockford
- Local gas station employee arrested for selling liquor to minor
- Renewable Fuel Standard delay ‘a mixed blessing,’ Bustos says
- Rockford delegation presents inaugural ‘Rockford Award’ to Norwegian Air
- Education in Illinois making slow progress, according to report
- Illinois GOP Congressional delegation: Obama’s immigration plan undermines rule of law
- Suspect, 17, charged in Halloween hit-and-run in Roscoe
- Saint Anthony College of Nursing president to retire
- Man found guilty in deadly August 2013 crash at Mulford and Garrett Lane
- ‘The Price is Right Live!’ at Coronado March 1; tickets on sale Nov. 21
Into The Wild: See eagles and more at Jensen Forest Preserve
As with “No Child Left Inside,” welcome to a new series of articles in partnership with Four Rivers Environmental Coalition (FREC) and The Rock River Times. In recognition of the United Nations designation of 2010 as the Year of Biodiversity, the FREC presents this bi-weekly series to help readers discover the amazing array of plants and animals in the rivers, prairies and woodlands “in our own back yard.” FREC is an alliance of 35 member organizations “dedicated to educating and advocating for the plants, animals, natural resources and ecosystems of the Four Rivers Region.” Please visit www.fourriver.org.
By Jamie B. Johannsen
Winnebago County Forest Preserve District
J. Norman Jensen Forest Preserve is one of the newest additions to the Winnebago County Forest Preserve District. This 112-acre site is on the Rock River, north of the millrace dam, just outside of Rockton. Original prairie, restored prairie, oak savanna and a mile of riverfront make Jensen a great place for viewing wildlife. It is a popular spot for fishing.
The 10-acre remnant dry prairie is on a gravel bluff above the river, where it makes a sharp bend below the dam. This vestige of our native grassland was identified 50 years ago by Dr. Egbert Fell, author of Flora of Winnebago County. Fell documented several rare plants at the prairie, including one of Illinois’ only known populations of the state endangered dragon wormwood.
Bring binoculars for your visit to these forests and wetlands that harbor many species of migratory birds, ducks and other waterfowl. This is a favorite roosting area for bald eagles and osprey that fish along the river. Other common sightings are great blue herons, great egrets red-shouldered hawks, red-tailed hawks and sandhill cranes.
From the July 7-13, 2010 isssue