Blog

Forest Preserves of Cook County to Collect Data on American Kestrels

Perched atop telephone wires or hovering overhead, some Forest Preserves visitors may have spotted a tiny, colorful raptor known as the American kestrel. What Wildlife Biologist Chuck Rizzo considers to be a “charismatic predator,” kestrels are the smallest raptor in the United States.   Although this small raptor was once considered a common bird to see, its population has been declining. To help understand the reasons behind the decline, researchers are collecting data that can be contributed to the American Kestrel Partnership.

Read More

Share the Trail Day is June 4

The Forest Preserves of Cook County is home to more than 300 miles of paved and unpaved trails that are used in a variety of ways. Residents and visitors can walk, run, hike, bike and even ride their horses through diverse habitats. But with so many different uses, how do the trails accommodate everyone?

Read More

Summertime is Full of Outdoor Recreation Opportunities in the Forest Preserves

Later this month marks the official beginning of summer. Warmer weather is finally upon us, and there are many ways to enjoy the sunshine in the Forest Preserves of Cook County. With camping, a new rock-climbing wall and activity barn, swimming, night programming at six Nature Centers and more, the Forest Preserves are alive with summer activities for people of all ages.

Read More

Summer Series Injects Films, Music into Forest Preserves

All summer long, Cook County residents and visitors can pack a picnic, spread out a blanket, relax and enjoy a movie or concert in the Forest Preserves during the “Films in the Forest” and “Forest Jams” event series.

Read More

Picture Yourself in a Boat on a River… or Lake or Slough or Lagoon

Did you know the Forest Preserves provides boating access to three rivers and eight recreational waterbodies?   Paddling—in a canoe or kayak—is a great workout that allows you to see the Preserves from a new perspective. Still, many preserve visitors haven’t tried it.

Read More

New Life for Sullivan Barn Means New Adventures for Campers

How do you beat the weekday blues? A staycation—camping close to home, recharging surrounded by nature and… rock climbing inside a historic barn.

Read More

Great Egrets Use Their Bill as a Spear

Whether fishing or fighting, the great egret’s razor-sharp bill is an amazing tool:

Read More

Forest Preserves hosts 2016 IHSA Bass Fishing Sectionals

On May 6, the Forest Preserves hosted three Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Bass Fishing Sectional tournaments at Busse Reservoir (Main Pool and South Pool) and Skokie Lagoons. Over 40 high school teams participated in these events.

Read More

Celebrate Mother’s Day in the Forest Preserves

Mothers play a crucial role in the world. From teaching and supporting to encouraging and inspiring, the impact the important women in our lives make is immeasurable, and it only makes sense to plan a special day thanking them for their many contributions!   Join the Forest Preserves of Cook County as we celebrate Mother’s Day with opportunities to explore Mother Nature during bird walks, hikes and more.

Read More

Benefits of Nature Highlighted in Forest Preserves Documentary

May is an exciting month for the Forest Preserves of Cook County. In addition to the many enjoyable and educational events and programs taking place throughout the County, there are a number of special highlights. We are particularly excited about the premiere of our documentary.

Read More

Try This! The Big Sit

As part of the Forest Preserves of Cook County’s Bird the Preserves initiative, each of our six Nature Centers is hosting The Big Sit, a day-long event in which birders of all experience levels will count how many birds they can spot or hear without leaving a 17-foot circle. The information collected during events like The Big Sit can help ecologists make better decisions about the conservation of bird habitat.

Read More

Restoration Plan Developed for Critical Wetland Habitat

The little blue heron used to be a frequent visitor at Eggers Marsh, a quiet wetland with plenty of fish, frogs and insects to eat, and marsh grasses providing places to hide. Located in southeast Chicago, this 40-acre wetland has long been a popular visiting and nesting area for a variety of birds including a number of threatened wetland species.

Read More

Baltimore Orioles Have a Taste for Sugar

Baltimore orioles feed mainly on insects, but in the spring and fall these birds have a serious sweet tooth… or beak.

Read More

Chicago’s True Nature: The Forest Preserves of Cook County

Forest Preserves documentary now playing on WYCC PBS Chicago and at Navy Pier's IMAX Theater

Read More

Wood Ducks Make Unique Parents

These breeding and parenting practices have led to success for wood ducks.

Read More
Visit two of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County