Calendar

Fall 2014 Calendar of Events

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* GSA - Trekking TrailsGSA - Trekking Trails

Time: 9:30 am

Saturday, November 1, 2014 9:30-11:30 AM - Girls Scouts - Brownie Explore the Nature Center’s trails with an expert hiker to learn to read a map, interpret trail signs, leave no trace and learn what to take on a hike. Make your own snack and enjoy a day in nature! This completes most of the Hiker badge. Cost: $11/Scout Attendance requirement: Minimum of 10 Scouts and maximum of 60. Registration and payment must be completed no later than Thursday the week prior to the scheduled workshop (at least 8 days before the workshop). Workshop registrations should be made through the Girl Scout office. To register by phone call 319-363-8335 or go to www.girlscoutstoday.org to register online

* GSA - X Marks the SpotGSA - X Marks the Spot

Time: 12:00 pm

Saturday, November 1, 2014 12:00-2:00 PM Come to a geocaching event to learn how the Global Positioning System (GPS) works. Learn to enter waypoints in a GPS receiver and find a geocache! Bring a trade item to leave in the cache. Bring your own GPS unit or borrow one of the Nature Center’s units. We’ll visit a geocache website. This completes most of the Geocache badge. Limited to 25 girls. Cost: $11/Scout Attendance requirement: Minimum of 10 Scouts and maximum of 60. Registration and payment must be completed no later than Thursday the week prior to the scheduled workshop (at least 8 days before the workshop). Workshop registrations should be made through the Girl Scout office. To register by phone call 319-363-8335 or go to www.girlscoutstoday.org to register online.

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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

* Coffee and ChatCoffee and Chat

Time: 9:00 am

Coffee and Chat Thursday, November 13 9–10 AM On the second Thursday of each month, all are welcome to gather in ICNC’s sunroom to enjoy coffee and conversation about the latest happenings. Enjoy a social time, learn what’s currently happening in nature, meet Nature Center staff, and become better acquainted with our facilities, programs and trails. Free.

* Home School-Iowa HabitatsHome School-Iowa Habitats

Time: 1:00 pm

Home School Program 2014-15 “Explore Your Wild World”. Exploring Iowa habitats. The beautiful fall prairie and woods is waiting for you to experience and explore. Take a scientific look to learn about the specific animals and plants that use each habitat and the habitats unique conditions. Learn about food chains, photosynthesis, layers of life in each habitat, and special features different plant and animals have to help them live in these very different habitats. 2 hour program. Be prepared to be outdoors on the trails. If raining, the program will be held on Monday, November 10 at 1 PM. Fee: $5 per student age 5 and older

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* BSA - Your Living WorldBSA - Your Living World

Time: 6:00 pm

Wolf Cub Achievement #7 “Your Living World” Friday, November 14, 2014 6:00-8:00 PM Spend the evening learning ways to help your planet. Discuss pollution problems and learn about conserving energy at home. Make the habitat better for wildlife at ICNC. (Fulfills requirements a, b, c, d & f) REGISTRATION/CANCELLATION POLICY: Registration and payment are required prior to the event. This can be done online, in person, by mail, or by phone with a credit card. Use a separate registration form for each event. Completed registration forms, payment, and roster of scouts attending must be received by the Nature Center no later than one week prior to the scheduled workshop (by 4 p.m. on the Friday prior to the event). Late registrations will be excepted through the Wednesday preceding the event at an additional fee of $2/scout. Payment must accompany registration. To register, call 319-362-0664 or visit: www.indiancreeknaturecenter.org. To complete the process you must also download and fill out one Registration Form and one Roster sheet per pack/group and submit these two forms to ICNC via email or fax.

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* BSA Forester BadgeBSA Forester Badge

Time: 9:30 am

Saturday, November 15, 2014 9:30-11:30 AM Boy Scouts - Webelos If you love to explore trees in your own backyard and would like to learn more about what a forester does, you should check out this workshop. Learn how to identify trees and other plants of the forest and more.(Fulfills requirements 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 9) Registration and payment are required prior to the event. This can be done online, in person, by mail, or by phone with a credit card. Use a separate registration form for each event. Completed registration forms, payment, and roster of scouts attending must be received by the Nature Center no later than one week prior to the scheduled workshop (by 4 p.m. on the Friday prior to the event). Late registrations will be excepted through the Wednesday preceding the event at an additional fee of $2/scout. Payment must accompany registration. To register, call 319-362-0664 or visit: www.indiancreeknaturecenter.org. To complete the process you must also download and fill out one Registration Form and one Roster sheet per pack/group and submit these two forms to ICNC via email or fax.

* Winter Bird Feeding 101Winter Bird Feeding 101

Time: 1:00 pm

Now, before snow flies, is the time to place your feeders and prepare for winter bird watching enjoyment. Learn what feeders and bird seed best attract and help birds, how to avoid window collisions and other potential bird feeding problems, ways to provide water, and how to identify your feathered diners. M $4; NM $6.

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* BSA Sharing World w/WildlifeBSA Sharing World w/Wildlife

Time: 6:00 pm

Bear Cub Achievement #5 Sharing your World with Wildlife Friday, November 21, 2014 6:00-8:00 PM Join an Indian Creek Nature Center naturalist for an evening of fun! We will explore various habitats, learn about extinct and endangered animals, feed the birds, and much more! (Fulfills requirements a, c, d & e) Registration and payment are required prior to the event. This can be done online, in person, by mail, or by phone with a credit card. Use a separate registration form for each event. Completed registration forms, payment, and roster of scouts attending must be received by the Nature Center no later than one week prior to the scheduled workshop (by 4 p.m. on the Friday prior to the event). Late registrations will be excepted through the Wednesday preceding the event at an additional fee of $2/scout. Payment must accompany registration. To register, call 319-362-0664 or visit: www.indiancreeknaturecenter.org. To complete the process you must also download and fill out one Registration Form and one Roster sheet per pack/group and submit these two forms to ICNC via email or fax.

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* Chili Luncheon & Gear AuctionChili Luncheon & Gear Auction

Time: 11:00 am

Chili Luncheon and Outdoor Gear Silent Auction Saturday, November 22 12 AM-2 PM Chili luncheon & Bidding from Noon- 1:30 pm Are you looking for a fun way to pick up outdoor gear for birding, gardening, camping, fishing or hiking at a great price? Or just looking for a great bowl of chili for lunch? Shop the most unique auction around to bid on a variety of gently-used gear and outdoor items. Just $6 lets you sample a variety of chilies made by members of the Cedar Wapsie Chapter of the Sierra Club. Proceeds from the auction and lunch benefit both the local Sierra Club and Indian Creek Nature Center. All are welcome. For more info, call the Nature Center or check our website. Do you have unused outdoor gear stashed in your garage, closet or attic? Please consider donating items to our auction!

* GSA - Tricks of the TrailGSA - Tricks of the Trail

Time: 4:00 pm

“Tricks of the Trail” Saturday, November 22, 2014 4:00-6:00 PM - Girl Scouts - Cadette. Find out what you need to go camping. Learn how to cook over a camp fire and purify water, and spend some time with a map and compass to find your way around the Nature Center. If it is clear, end the evening stargazing! This workshop will complete most of the Trailblazing workshop. Cost: $11/Scout Attendance requirement: Minimum of 10 Scouts and maximum of 60. Registration and payment must be completed no later than Thursday the week prior to the scheduled workshop (at least 8 days before the workshop). Workshop registrations should be made through the Girl Scout office. To register by phone call 319-363-8335 or go to www.girlscoutstoday.org to register online

* Under the StarsUnder the Stars

Time: 6:30 pm

Under the Stars Saturday, November 22 6:30 PM Join us for a relaxing evening under the stars, soaking in some ancient sunshine. Watch for satellites and learn about fall constellations. We may spot a few late Leonid meteors! (The Leonid meteor shower peaks around November 17th.) Binoculars and telescopes will be available, but feel free to bring your own, along with a lawn chair or blanket to sit on. If cloudy, we’ll enjoy a night hike. Program cancelled if raining. Adults: M $5; NM $6. Children age 10 and under: $3.

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* Thanksgiving - Trails are OpenThanksgiving - Trails are Open

All trails are open for your enjoyment! Nature Center offices and buildings are closed Thursday, November 27 through Sunday, November 30 for Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving!

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* Thanksgiving - Trails are OpenThanksgiving - Trails are Open

All trails are open for your enjoyment! Nature Center offices and buildings are closed Thursday, November 27 through Sunday, November 30 for Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving!

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* Thanksgiving - Trails are OpenThanksgiving - Trails are Open

All trails are open for your enjoyment! Nature Center offices and buildings are closed Thursday, November 27 through Sunday, November 30 for Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving!

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* Thanksgiving - Trails are OpenThanksgiving - Trails are Open

All trails are open for your enjoyment! Nature Center offices and buildings are closed Thursday, November 27 through Sunday, November 30 for Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving!

           
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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.