Winter Trails & Naturalist Tales Feb. 4

Staff Report

University of Illinois Extension-Winnebago County will hold its second annual Winter Trails & Naturalist Tales event from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 4.

The event will be at Atwood Center, 2685 New Milford Road, Rockford.

Winter Trails & Naturalist Tales offers the public an opportunity to enjoy winter’s beauty and learn more about the natural environment.

U of I Extension Master Naturalists will guide participants through historic Atwood Park’s woodland, prairie, river and marsh habitat during the “Winter Trails” Winter Ecology Snowshoe Hike, while “Naturalist Tales” will be shared by two distinguished naturalists, Dr. Richard King of Northern Illinois University and Scott Elrick of the Illinois State Geological Survey.

Dr. King will share his experiences with the successful recovery and delisting of the previously endangered Lake Erie watersnake in his presentation titled “Conservation of Midwestern Amphibians and Reptiles: Challenges and Successes.” Elrick will reveal an unprecedented view of ancient forest life during his presentation “Snapshot in Time — Geologic Secrets of Danville’s Fossilized Forest,” as he describes the 300-million-year-old fossilized forest found in the roof of an underground coal mine near Danville, Ill.

Program fee is $30, which includes a chili lunch, two keynote speakers, one guided outdoor hike and snowshoe rental (weather permitting). To register, visit or call (815) 986-4357.

From the Feb. 1-7, 2012, issue

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