Diary Table of Contents

Oct. 14 2006

Scouts learn about the spooky and creepy side of nature.


August 29, 2006

The restoration relies on the little guys for success. See a picture page of butterflies.


March 25, 2006

Nature stages a dramatic comeback, thanks to restoration.


Oct. 22, 2005

The annual Halloween "Spooktacular" blends fun and education.


July 15, 2005

Girl Scouts visit the IRC for a special mid-summer educational program on camouflage.


Click here fora photo page of warblers banded.

May 14, 2005

A bird banding demonstration is held to celebrate International Migratory Bird Day.


April 8, 2005

Prairie and woodland burns are conducted with an eye to controlling exotic species and stimulating native wildflowers.


See a photo albumof the prairie in late summer.

July 5, 2004

The public is invited to see the reconstructed prairie.


May 30, 2004

Volunteers from two generations sow seeds for the start of our savanna reconstruction.



March 19, 2004

Jacques Nuzzo helps light the very first prescribed fire at the Illinois Raptor Center.


View a photo albumof our replanting efforts

May 6, 2004

Scouts help plant hardwood trees, including bur oak and black walnut, in the floodplain.


Oct. 27, 2003

More than 100 girl scouts gather for a Halloween "Spooktacular."


Click here for more about the battle against invasive species.

Oct. 19, 2003

Eagle Scout candidate Andrew Coers gathers a crew to remove Trees of Heaven, an invasive species.

Introduction and Thanks

The Girl Scouts of America-Shemamo Council and the Illinois Raptor Center are teaming up to restore native plants and trees on the IRC's 15-acre property along the Sangamon River, west of Decatur.

Through this diary we will share our experiences. Hopefully, the information we post here in the coming months and years will help inspire other groups and individuals to undertake restoration of their own property. Schoolyard prairie plantings and butterfly gardens are becoming increasingly popular, and are good potential projects.

Since the girls scouts assisting us range in age from 6-18 years, we have developed a variety of activities and educational programs to complement the restoration work. Many of these will be included in the diary entries.

The IRC and GSA-Shemamo Council thank the many individuals and organizations that are making this work possible. This list is likely to grow as our work progresses. Neighbor Roger Viseur, IDNR district biologist Carl Handel, Illinois Power, the Lumpkin Foundation, the GSA-Linking Girls to the Land program, The Illinois Conservation Foundation, the President Abraham Lincoln Memorial Arboretum and the Illinois Native Plant Society have provided donations, volunteer time, advice, seeds and other help. Thanks are also due to Shemamo Council staff and parents and IRC volunteers.

Click here to learn more about the organizations that are supporting this project.



A variety of restoration and habitat improvement projects are in progress at the present time. Click here to see a map of the restoration projects.


Aug. 15, 2003

From a distance, the newly planted prairie looks like a weed patch. Closer inspection reveals prairie species including side-oats grama.



Two photo albums accompany this entry. | Baltimore orioles tend their nest | Afternoon educational activities

June 17, 2003

Scouts gather at the edge of the recently planted prairie following an afternoon of education and activities.


Three photo albums accompany this entry. | Daisy scouts plant study garden | Planting prairie from seed | Daffodil Valley update.

June 4, 2003

After weeks of delays caused by wet and windy weather, the prairie is finally planted from seed.


View more artworkhere.

March 8, 2003

Girl Scouts gather for an Art and Nature program.


For extra pictures, view the photoalbum.

Oct. 27, 2002

Older scouts helped remove multi-flora rose and other brush while Daisy scouts scattered seeds to the wind.


Girl Scouts maketheir first visit to the IRC.

Sept. 7, 2002

Work begins with the mowing of a weedy field that will become a reconstructed prairie



Return to Illinois Raptor Center Home Page | Find out about the IRC's educational programs | Go to Partners in Education |