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Milan Bottoms Fall Festival Success! Saturday, October 24, 2015: Volunteers gathered seed in the morning for the prairie restoration project at Milan Bottoms. Lunch was served at 1:00 and a guided nature hike started at 2:00. By 3:00 cider was being pressed and marshmallows...Read More
Here at River Bend we get excited about Prairies and we have a two new projects. The first is on 7 acres in the Milan Bottomlands West of Rock Island on Highway 92 (junction Turkey Hollow Road). The other is at Black Hawk State Park. So far we have set up three work days and...Read More
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On October 1, 2015, Eric Anderson was hired as the Executive Director for River Bend Wildland Trust (River Bend). Anderson, a respected conservation advocate and practitioner, is a believer in building community, and strong local economies with easy access to nature. Anderson has been a volunteer with River Bend and its predecessor organizations for over 12 years. He has served on the Board of River Bend since it was formed as a non-profit in 2013, under the mentorship of Interstate Resource Conservation & Development. Previously, Anderson spent two years working in the environmental consulting field with a mid-size Chicago firm which grew out of a forestry consulting business he operated from Viola, Illinois starting in 2007.
River Bend is unique among local conservation organizations in that it can make conservation goals permanent. If a landowner wants to make sure that the conservation values (e.g. wildlife habitat, wetlands, and relatively natural aesthetics) of their property are protected legally, forever, River Bend does this with conservation easements. “If you want to make sure your hunting property is there for your great-grandchildren and is not a subdivision, we can help.” said Anderson. “Our ability to do land protection will depend on the community’s support.” Details of that process and how to become a member are on the River Bend website www.rbwt.org.
River Bend members have been doing active stewardship for over two decades. Prescribed burning at Black Hawk State Historic Site, and establishing the prairie and planting trees at the Milan Bottoms Preserve are two examples their work. This background and Anderson’s experience doing forest management with private landowners are coming together.
River Bend will be offering fee-for-service ecosystem restoration for its members on private and public lands. “A permanent conservation easement is not for everyone, but there are a lot of folks in the area with forest management plans in need of implementation assistance. If they are River Bend members we will help them manage their properties.” said Anderson. Income from this work will cover the cost of stewardship staff. Profits will go to support the ongoing mission of the organization.
“I have a lot of ideas I want to implement with River Bend. We have always done a lot of education with elementary and high school groups. I want to extend that to collage and career bound individuals that are interested in nature, ecology, conservation, and non-profits. I am currently working with faculty and administrators at Augustana and Black Hawk Colleges to incorporate our activities into their course work. I plan to reach out to other area colleges and universities in the coming weeks.” said Anderson.Read More
Our Third Annual BioBlitz was held a few weeks ago at the QCCA Wetland / Education Center in Silvis, Illinois. We had several experts and volunteers on hand to search and identify the biodiversity on hand. The results that day were 440 Unique Species. This number will grow as experts continue to look at collections, photos, and other evidence; the 440 count is what they identified during the 24 hour Blitz. One of the most interesting finds was a Northern Long-eared Bat, a rare and threatened species. See the article at: http://www.qconline.com/news/local/rare-bat-found-at-qcca-wetland-center/article_7c2eb53e-859e-593f-bd57-9288b90386fe.html
|Turtles, snakes, frogs – 8||Trees & shrubs – 9|
|Fish – 8||Vascular plants (grasses, forbs)-161|
|Aquatic & terrestrial Invertebrates- 197||Algae – 9|
|Spiders – 18||Liverwort – 1|
|Birds – 32|
|Small Mammals – 7
Bats – 8 (acoustic recordings)
|(Preliminary )TOTAL||440 species|
QCCA Bioblitz – July 24-25
3:00 pm Friday to 3pm Sat.
Public is Welcome – Click Here for Map
Directions: 1299 172nd St N, East Moline, IL 61244 – From Highway 5 in Silvis, turn East on Barstow Road and then (North on 172nd Street) OR exit Highway 5 near Choppers Grill and turn right onto access road, then left onto 172nd Street.
|Birds||QC Audubon Society
|Sat. 7:00 am||Lead bird trip Sat. morning|
|Sat 8:00 am||Set traps Friday night
Check mammal traps
on Sat morning
|Sat. 11:00||Electrofishing demo|
|Sat. 9:00 am||Set traps Friday night
Check traps Sat.
|Friday & Saturday||Set Light traps Friday
i.d. on Sat. in shelter
|Bat acoustics||Amber Schorg||Sat. noon||View recordings of bat echo-location from Friday night|
|Trees||Eric Anderson||Friday||i.d. trees and shrubs
no specific time
|invertebrates||Kevin Geedy &students||Saturday||Collect invertebrates
Boat & ponar
i.d. on Sat. in shelter
|Wetland walk/plants, etc.||Candace
|Sat 10:00 am||Wetland hike|
|IDNR Conservation Trailer||Friday
We still have tables open…rally the troops and sign up your team! It is sure to be a great night to test your knowledge and meet new friends. We have wonderful raffle baskets up for grabs and the door prizes will be a hit. Don’t miss out, we hope to see you there!Read More
Interested in joining a prescribed fire crew in the QC area? RBWT is a your hands-on training organization and a great group to work alongside, so feed your interests and join us this season!
A burn day is scheduled for April 11th (or 12th depending on weather) we will be meeting at Prairie Rose Farms, 31501 113th Avenue West Illinois City, IL at 9 am to suit up and brief on operations. With several units to burn in one weekend you are sure to get a great jump on becoming a wildland firefighter. Rx burns will be instructed by certified Illinois Prescribed Fire Managers, and RBWT provides safety gear for all volunteers. We are happy to work with your schedules, crews will be accommodated upon availability, please contact Marilyn at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested. No prior experience required.
Join us for a great day on at the farm and remember lunches are generously provided.Read More
Already feeling that cabin fever? Turn these cold winter days into your think station for spring preparations. RBWT members Dallas and Roxie DeShane are hosting a “Winter Wisdom” series this February focusing on local pollinators. All programs will be held at Black Hawk Historic Site’s Singing Bird Lodge. The series includes two nights of professional presentations covering the decline of pollinators but also what we can do to help, as well as a third installment of the “Monarch Truffle” workshop. Gain knowledge and the tools at this years Winter Series to assist pollinator populations by increasing habitats and food sources in your area.
February 3rd and 10th, Tuesdays, 6-9 PM Winter Wisdom presentations
6-6:30 PM Meet & greet
6:30-8:30 PM Two professional presenters; with break
8:30-9 PM Networking
February 21st, Saturday 1-3 PM Monarch Truffle Workshop
1:00-1:15 Meet & greet
1:15-1:45 Monarch Truffle presentation: Plant identification
1:45-3 PM Truffle instruction & construction
Throughout the Winter Series, River Bend Wildland Trust will be running our annual membership drive along with native seed sales for your planting pleasures. Members will be available for you to learn how to become involved in restoration and public outreach within our organization and throughout the community. There will also be a wildlife booth, with Kelly McKay, a local expert ready for your inquiries.
Tuesday night programs are free to the public (no registration necessary) and the Monarch Truffle workshop is only $5.00/person, however, all participants will have a chance to construct over $20.00 in Monarch Truffles to take home and plant. Monarch Truffle Workshop seating is limited; to register please email RBWT Director, Candace Marner, at email@example.com with contact information & total number of participants.