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Topic: Alyssa Nyberg


Posted on Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015 in Uncategorized

By Alyssa Nyberg I seem to get more hugs from my seven-year-old son in the month of October than I do any other month of the year. When I come home from work at the Kankakee Sands Native Plant Nursery, he wraps his arms around me and says, “Mmmmm, you smell like butter.” Actually, I … Continued

Of whip-poor-wills and sand prairie phlox

Posted on Wednesday, May 6th, 2015 in Nature

By Alyssa Nyberg Tonight, as I make the final edits to this article on sand prairie phlox, a whip-poor-will (Antrostomus vociferous) sings softly outside my window. The repetitive song is music of hope to me. Whip-poor-will populations have declined precipitously in the last 50 years, and many folks no longer hear whip-poor-wills singing in their … Continued

Oak trees: More than acorns and limbs for tire swings

Posted on Monday, April 20th, 2015 in Nature

By Alyssa Nyberg In rural Northwest Indiana, we are lucky that majestic oaks are still a prominent feature of our outdoor world. In fact, oaks grow so prolifically in our sandy soils that they sometimes seem like weeds! There are twelve species of oak found here, the most common being the black oak (Quercus velutina), … Continued

Our roadsides tell a story

Posted on Thursday, March 5th, 2015 in Nature

By Alyssa Nyberg As the snow that covers our roadsides finally begins to melt away, I can’t help but wonder what treasures we will find. Although we drive them every day, our roadsides are one of the most commonly overlooked natural spaces in our communities. Our roadsides tell a story. They tell about the present … Continued

Flowers have perfect timing

Posted on Friday, February 6th, 2015 in Nature

By Alyssa Nyberg Timing is everything. A second too soon or a second too late, and often the game is lost, the joke isn’t funny, or the date isn’t accepted. Sigh. So it is with plants. Each plant has its bloom time, and the insects and birds depend upon it. If the skunk cabbage emerges … Continued

A New Year’s Resolution

Posted on Thursday, January 8th, 2015 in Winter

  By Alyssa Nyberg My kids and I look at dead things. It’s true. They say you are supposed to “stop and smell the roses,” and we do that in the summertime. But there aren’t many roses in winter. So, we look at dead things. Today I was holding a limp and lifeless Short-eared Owl … Continued

The small but mighty quail

Posted on Monday, December 8th, 2014 in Uncategorized

By Alyssa Nyberg The prairie can seem a cold, desolate place in the middle of winter. A walk on the snow-covered ground at Kankakee Sands can be deafeningly quiet. That can all change in an instant with an the flapping of 30 wings right in front of you! A covey of quail has just erupted … Continued

Fondness for a Flower: Rattlesnake Master

Posted on Friday, November 7th, 2014 in Nature

By Alyssa Nyberg November is the month to give thanks for things we are fond of…for friends, family and of course, for flowers! Rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium) is a favorite flower of the prairies. It doesn’t just have a great name, it also attracts a wide variety of insects and songbirds. Additionally, rattlesnake master is … Continued

See birds and flowers during free hikes

Posted on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 in Nature

The Nature Conservancy will be hosting the 3rd Annual Flowers and Feathers Program at Kankakee Sands. on Thursday, May 1 and Saturday, May 17, 2014. There will be easy walks along the edges of the prairie and wetlands of Newton County, viewing such birds as the Henslow’s sparrow, Blue grosbeak and the Upland sandpiper.  Bring … Continued

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