Calendar

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* CLOSED - July 4th HolidayCLOSED - July 4th Holiday

Buildings and Offices are closed for the July 4th Holiday. All trails are open sunrise to sunset for your enjoyment.

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* CLOSED - July 4th HolidayCLOSED - July 4th Holiday

Buildings and Offices are closed for the July 4th Holiday. All trails are open sunrise to sunset for your enjoyment.

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* Eager Beaver Explorers Eager Beaver Explorers

Time: 9:00 am

The perfect half day camp for young campers! Eager beavers are esc ited about hiking, catching bugs, going on bird hunts, and exploring the pond. wild adventures are behind every bush as you explore and learn about Iowa's wild world.

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* Eager Beaver Explorers Eager Beaver Explorers

Time: 9:00 am

The perfect half day camp for young campers! Eager beavers are esc ited about hiking, catching bugs, going on bird hunts, and exploring the pond. wild adventures are behind every bush as you explore and learn about Iowa's wild world.

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* Eager Beaver Explorers Eager Beaver Explorers

Time: 9:00 am

The perfect half day camp for young campers! Eager beavers are esc ited about hiking, catching bugs, going on bird hunts, and exploring the pond. wild adventures are behind every bush as you explore and learn about Iowa's wild world.

* Trail Trekkers - Earth RocksTrail Trekkers - Earth Rocks

Time: 9:30 am

Trail Trekkers – Earth RocksEdit This camp is Full. Registration is closed. We will maintain a waiting list in case of any cancelled registrations. To add your name to this list, call: 362-0664. Wednesday, July 8, 9:30 – 10:30 am Ages 3,4,5 with parent or other adult The earth below our feet is filled with rocks and mysteries! Come learn a bit about dinosaurs and fossils, rocks, and what rocks are made of. Go on a rock hunt, and adopt a pet rock of your own! $8 Member Child; $10 Non-member Child per session Series Registration Discount (not available with online registration, call for this discount) Attend all six programs for $40 Member; $50 Non-Member. Each Session is limited to 14 children Rain Policy: The program will be adapted for the indoors if it should rain.

* Graden Party: Land StewardsGraden Party: Land Stewards

Time: 5:30 pm

Garden Party: Calling All Land Stewards! Wednesday, July 8, 5:30-7 PM July may bring the heat, but don’t let it beat you down. At this monthly volunteer event we will discuss and highlight opportunities for upcoming land management projects and spend time working outdoors. As always, meet at the barn for a snack and pack your own water bottle. Free.

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* Coffee and ChatCoffee and Chat

Time: 9:00 am

Coffee and Chat. Each month on the second Thursday gather in the sunroom at Indian Creek Nature Center to enjoy coffee and conversation about the latest happenings at Indian Creek Nature Center. Enjoy a social time, and learn what’s happening in nature at that time, meet Nature Center staff and become better acquainted with our facilities, programs and trails. Free

* Eager Beaver Explorers Eager Beaver Explorers

Time: 9:00 am

The perfect half day camp for young campers! Eager beavers are esc ited about hiking, catching bugs, going on bird hunts, and exploring the pond. wild adventures are behind every bush as you explore and learn about Iowa's wild world.

* Trail Trekkers - Earth RocksTrail Trekkers - Earth Rocks

Time: 9:30 am

Trail Trekkers – Earth RocksEdit Camp is FULL, no more registrations accepted. Thursday, July 9, 9:30 - 10:30 am Ages 3,4,5 with parent or other adult The earth below our feet is filled with rocks and mysteries! Come learn a bit about dinosaurs and fossils, rocks, and what rocks are made of. Go on a rock hunt, and adopt a pet rock of your own! $8 Member Child; $10 Non-member Child per session Series Registration Discount (not available with online registration, call for this discount) Attend all six programs for $40 Member; $50 Non-Member. Each Session is limited to 14 children Rain Policy: The program will be adapted for the indoors if it should rain.

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* Monarch Butterfly PartyMonarch Butterfly Party

Time: 6:30 pm

Friday, July 10, 6:30 PM Tour our butterfly hoop house, see our monarch caterpillar raising project, and learn what you can do at home to create a safe haven for butterflies. Kid activities, family fun. Program length: 90 Min. Adults: M $4; NM $5. Children ages 4-12: $2.

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* Stream WalkingStream Walking

Time: 1:00 pm

Saturday, July 11, 1 PM Join us to explore Indian Creek looking out from inside of the stream. Net some creek life, explore the sandbars, and just cool off as you play in the stream shallows. Wear old shoes or boots to protect your feet. Naturalists will help you find and identify amazing stream critters! Program length: 90 minutes. Adults: M $4; NM $6. Children ages 5-12: $2.

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* WildingWilding

Time: 9:00 am

Wilding (Ages 10-11)Edit July 13-16 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Experience the skills that allow you to comfortably live in the wild. Fire building and safety are essential. Primitive shelter building and learn to identify and prepare various wild foods and teas. Use a compass and map to find your way, and learn basic trail first aid. As you explore the wilder areas of the nature center you will also learn about the wildlife that lives here. Limited to 16 campers. $130 Members; $150 Nonmembers

* Wild Cat CampWild Cat Camp

Time: 9:00 am

Wild Cats Camp (Ages 8-9) Session 2: July 13-16, 9 a.m. – 3 pm Hands-on adventures will take you to every habitat at the nature center. Explore Bena Brook, discover the pine groves, use dip nets at the ponds to catch aquatic critters. Learn about amazing birds, mighty mammals and curious critters that live in Iowa habitats. Play camouflage games to discover how animals survive; discover animal trails, tracks and signs; and learn about the predators who hunt and the prey that escapes. Limited to 12 campers. $130 Members; $150 Nonmembers

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* Serious Shelters in the WildSerious Shelters in the Wild

Time: 9:00 am

Serious Shelters in the Wild (ages 10 and older),Edit Friday, July 17 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Work with experienced adults to build a shelter in the woods totally from the materials nature offers. Think creatively as you engineer a unique structure and learn about knots, tools, and effective construction techniques. $35 Members; $50 Nonmembers

* Flash Dance in the Prairie!Flash Dance in the Prairie!

Time: 8:30 pm

Friday, July 17, 8:30 PM At dusk, fireflies magically appear, dancing above the grasses. Enjoy an evening of firefly flash codes, discover how to recognize different species by light color and learn how you can keep fireflies’ flash in our yards and neighborhoods. Like many insects, fireflies are disappearing but a few simple changes in our backyards will ensure their presence in our summer evenings. Program length: 90 Min. Individuals: M $3; NM $4. Family: M $7; NM $10.

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* Bats, Birds & ButterfliesBats, Birds & Butterflies

Time: 9:30 am

Trail Trekkers – Bats, Birds and Butterflies This camp is FULL. Nor more registrations available. We will maintain a waiting list in the case of any cancelled registrations. To add your name to the waiting list, call 362-0664. Tuesday, July 21, 9:30 - 10:30 am What do all three of these things have in common? Wings! Find out how these creatures are alike, and how they are very different at the same time. $8 Member Child; $10 Non-member Child per session Series Registration Discount (not available with online registration, call for this discount) Attend all six programs for $40 Member; $50 Non-Member. Each Session is limited to 14 children Rain Policy: The program will be adapted for the indoors if it should rain

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* Bats, Birds & ButterfliesBats, Birds & Butterflies

Time: 9:30 am

Wednesday, July 22, 9:30 - 10:30 am This camp is FULL, no more registrations accepted. We will maintain a waiting list for any possible cancelled registrations. To add your name to this list, call 362-0664. What do all three of these things have in common? Wings! Find out how these creatures are alike, and how they are very different at the same time. Trail Trekkers - Bats, Birds and Butterflies Each Session is limited to 14 children Rain Policy: The program will be adapted for the indoors if it should rain.

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* Trees and Quiet A Nature NightTrees and Quiet A Nature Night

Time: 6:30 pm

Trees and Quiet A Nature Night for Caregivers and Children Ages 3-12 Friday, July 24, 6:30-8 PM Are you missing time spent in nature where you could hear sounds other than stomping feet and chatty little voices that scare wildlife away? Here’s your chance to have a little “Trees and Quiet” at Indian Creek Nature Center. While the staff provides nature activities for your children near the barn, you have quiet time to explore the trails, enjoy the birds or marvel at the wildflowers. Pre-registration is required. Space is limited. Free-will donation. To register, call 362-0664.

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* Blue Moon WalkBlue Moon Walk

Time: 8:00 pm

Blue Moon Walk Friday, July 31, 8 PM Now is “once in a blue moon.” Join us for a quiet evening walk to enjoy summer’s Blue Moon and learn a bit about moon lore and evening sounds. Meet at the barn. Program length: 90 Minutes. M $4; NM $6.

 

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Wildlife

Photo of a mounted owl in the auditorium of the Indian Creek Nature CenterMost wild animals tend to avoid one of their largest predators—humans. If you are quiet and patient, some animals may let you see them. Signs of wildlife are abundant on the property.

The Nature Center receives many inquiries about abandoned or injured wildlife people find in their yards or on hikes.  We are not licensed, equipped or staffed to handle injured or abandoned wildlife. We recommend you contact the Wapsie River Wildlife Rehabilitation Project if you have orphaned, injured, or displaced wildlife. They are volunteers licensed through the Department of Natural Resources who care for area wildlife in need. Their services are free although donations are always appreciated. The Wildlife Hotline number is: 319-480-6828. This phone number will place you in contact with over twenty rehabilitators with consideration of location, expertise of species, and circumstances. Click HERE to visit their Facebook page.

Other resources include the McBride Raptor Project at Kirkwood Community College for birds of prey (319-398-5495). You can also contact DNR Game Wardens Aric Sloterdyk (319-350-2863) or Ron Lane (319-350-2871) for assistance.

Orphaned Wildlife is Rarely Truly Orphaned

Usually mother is hidden nearby watching. Adult mammals have strong odors that are easily detected by predators. Young mammals are naturally protected by not having strong odors that attract predators. Wild mothers will not stay in a nest unless they are actually nursing their offspring. If you discover a nest of young wildlife, leave it alone. They do not need to be “rescued”.

Baby rabbits spend many hours alone in their fur-lined nest with the mother rabbit secretly visiting only to nurse them. She is rarely seen. Rabbit nests that are discovered should be left alone and pets should be kept away from the site. If tiny rabbits handled by humans, the mother rabbit will still return and care for them. Her instinct to care for her young is greater than her fear of human scent. Leave them in the nest or at the nest site if the nest have been destroyed. The mother will move them to a new nest. Be patient. She may wait for darkness to hide her activities.

Deer hide fawns in tall grasses or woodland plants. Fawns may appear to be abandoned but do not be fooled. The doe is nearby watching and she will return. Never remove a fawn from where it is found.

Photo of bluebird hatchlings on the prairie at the Indian Creek Nature CenterBaby birds are frequently found on the ground, especially as they leave the nest for the first time, an act called fledging. It is natural for fledglings to spend some days on the ground while learning to fly and be independent. The parents feed and care for the young during this critical period. It is important to keep cats and dogs away from the site. A young bird found on the ground can be placed in a nearby bush or tree for safety. If you place it back in the nest, it will only leave again. Birds that are fledglings will be covered with feathers.

Storms often knock baby birds from nests before the birds are ready to fledge. These birds will not be fully feathered. Place the bird back in the nest if you can. Birds have very little sense of smell and parent bird will not detect that a human has handled their young. Parents will return to care for the young. Do not take the bird into your house. If the parents return and cannot find their young, they will assume a predator destroyed them and not return to that nesting site. It is best to let nature take it’s course. Injured creatures are a link in the natural food chain.

All wild baby birds, mammals and reptiles are difficult to care for. Wild animals and birds never make good pets. They often carry diseases you can contract. A license from the state Department of Natural Resources is required to care for injured animals or birds. Wildlife rehabilitators are trained and licensed to care for injured or truly orphaned wildlife. Contact the Iowa DNR, 1-515-281-IDNR for more information. It is illegal to have a wild bird, mammal or reptile as a pet unless you have a state license to do so.