Date: 1/12/18 6:39 pm From: Jed Hertz <jhh_60910...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...> Subject: IBET Kankakee Ornithology Course of Growing Interest Among Young College Students
Just a short note to inspire all you 50yr birders: Olivet Nazarene University has recently attracted 26 students for their introductory Ornithology Course. I met the young instructor - Derek Rosenberger- on the Perry Farm trail the other day. He seemed quite excited with the growing interest in bird studies among young college students and having one of Illinois's Birding Hot Spots - LeVasseur Park/Perry Farm - right in their backyard. He mentioned "ebird" as a useful tool and looked forward to field studies at Perry Farm Prairie. So now when you see a number of new names on the ebird list for Kankakee County you'll know where these newbees are coming from.
This story brings back memories of Hazel Lory's many Kankakee Valley Audubon field trips in the 1970s -1990s when we had 10-20 participants including a number of young children. Hazel was a biology teacher in Michigan and had a master's degree in Ornithology from Michigan State University, having studied with Olin Pettingill at the Chyboygan Biological Station in upper MI. She moved to Momence, IL with her new husband late in life and started attending Kankakee Valley Audubon field trip. It wasn't long before her welcoming spirit and birding knowlege attracted others to these outings and developed into a reguler cadrie of folks with numerour young children - including Bronson Ratcliff at the tender age of 6 yrs old. What a great spirit she was, fun to be around, and always serious about filling outa bird list for the day's outing. (Her lists are now at the IDNRs according to Vernon Kleen).
Anyway, it's good to know others are filling her shoes and inspiring a new generation of nature lovers.
BTW: I should mention that Gary Soper ( Kankakee professional wildlife photographer who brought IL it's 1st Common Ringed-Plover sighting) has now become a regular contributor to the Kankakee Daily Journal's Thursday "Outdoor" section and brings a unique nature-lovers perspectiver to our local wildlife coverage. Gary, Bob Themer (the original "Outdoor" editor and one of Kankakee's most gifted and concerned writers), and another newer contibutor, Trevor Edmondson, make-up a fine trio of writers/photographers serving the Kankakee County "Outdoor" interests.
Seems things are happening in Kankakee.