Dragonflies & Damselflies. Monday, July 24: 10:30 a.m. or 4:00 p.m. Forty-eight species of Dragonflies and Damselflies have been recorded in Jefferson County. These fascinating insects have names like Calico Pennant, Widow Skimmer, and Blue-fronted Dancer. Come learn about their life cycle and how to identify some of the local species. Starts at the nature center In Jefferson County Park and then we’ll head outdoors. This program is geared for adults but kids will enjoy it too. Led by entomologist Moni Hayne. No registration necessary. No fee.
Cicada Killers At Waterworks Park!. Tuesday, July 25: 10:00 a.m. At least 3 different species of wasps construct nests in the ground in Iowa. These "digger wasps" include the cicada killer wasp, the largest wasp found here. While these wasps are intimidating because of their large size they are really nothing to be feared: the males have no stingers and the females are non-agressive and are more interested in bagging cicadas in which to lay their eggs. Join Entomologist Moni Hayne and Naturalist Therese Cummiskey at Waterworks Park to see these insects at work in the sand at the beach. No registration necessary. No fee.
Moth Night. Wednesday, July 26: 10:00 p.m. or 11:30 p.m. We’re offering two late night sessions for mothing. 10:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. for those people who don’t want to stay up too late. And from 11:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. for those who do. Each sessions begins in the nature center. You don’t have to have kids to participate but all kids must be accompanied by an adult. Led by entomologist Moni Hayne. No registration necessary. No fee.
Butterflies. Thursday, July 27: 10:30 a.m. or 4:00 p.m. Come learn about the variety of butterflies found in Jefferson County. We will even touch base on identifying the common caterpillars and what plants in your garden they might be nibbling on! Starts indoors at the nature center and then we’ll head outdoors on a hike to identify some of the local species. This program is geared for adults but kids will enjoy it too. Led by entomologist Moni Hayne. No registration necessary. No fee.
Des Moines River Water Trail Programs. Jefferson County Conservation has once again partnered with the Iowa DNR to provide activities on or along the Des Moines River. Naturalist Brittney Tiller has planned ten activities from July through October. Click here to see the List of 2017 Des Moines River Water Trail Programs. (a PDF).
Need more info? Call Therese at 472-4421, or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Jefferson County Conservation Board offers a variety of outdoor-related programs each year. During the 2015 - 2016 fiscal year, 3903 individuals took part in naturalist programs. The bulk of that number was school group related. (Every classroom in the Fairfield School District makes a trip to Jefferson County Park as part of their curriculum.) Teachers have an opportunity to take part in a field trip that can help expand what they are studying in the classroom and in the process give the kids a hands-on, in-touch-with-nature experience. To schedule a field trip for your classroom contact Therese by calling 641-472-4421 or e-mail her at email@example.com.
Naturalist-led programs are also offered for the general public throughout the year. The programming varies from cultural history related programs such as basket making, maple syruping and the annual Dutch Oven Cook Off to outdoor recreation classes such as canoeing and kayaking. Natural history related programs make up the bulk of the naturalist-led programs for the public and might include an indoor class on pond management or outdoor hikes and trips to go wildlife watching, stargazing, or rock hunting. You can learn about upcoming programs by visiting this website, e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org and asking to be put on the newsletter mailing list or by looking up Jefferson County Conservation on Facebook.
Church groups, clubs and other organizations interested in a naturalist-led hike or presentation can contact the naturalist by phone (472-4421) or e-mail. Currently there is no fee charged for these programs unless there are supplies involved (i.e. basket making); or if the naturalist has to travel out of county, mileage may be charged.