About Us and Contact Us

Beyond the screen of your laptop and your smartphone, nature is alive and well!  Come enjoy!

Jane Masterson is a local photographer and Hyde Park Nature Walk guide.  When she was an adjunct college professor, her students observed plants and birds, collected data and tested hypotheses to try to answer questions such as why some plants bloomed earlier than others and why woodpeckers migrated through before orioles.  And while she no longer teaches at the college level, Jane still enjoys encouraging others to explore the Chicago wilderness.  She promises, no quizzes!  Whether you’d just like to look at the photos of Hyde Park wildlife on this blog or want to come out for a Nature Walk, Welcome!

Next Nature Walk:

Moon watch and Nature walks on hold for now.

Interested in helping save Hyde Park’s wild spots:  habitat for our local wildlife and migrating birds may be replaced by a music venue and concession stand unless you speak up.   Want to help prevent this?  Check out savethisspace.com  and sign up for emails from jacksonparkwatch.com

Contact us with any questions or to discuss setting up a time for a Nature Walk.  Feel free to call (773 – 502 – 3159) or to fill out the form below:

Polar Vortex Winter!

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coyote on lake near pier at Hayes (63rd) and the lakevideo of coyote on lake:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/01pxssikd6z4uen/RWgoz5ZRU0

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feeders helped our birds survive this winter

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raccon prints in the snow

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sundog

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mute swans

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mute swans

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white-winged scoter (sea duck rarely seen in Chicago)

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white-winged scoter with juvenile goldeneye

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snowy owl back on 63rd Street Pier Sunday–we’ll check out the pier on Tuesday’s nature walk

On December 17th, we will meet at 3:30 pm for a Free Guided Nature Walk.  We meet at the east door (Space Center) of the Science and Industry Museum .  We will use a spotting scope to look at the winter ducks in the 59th Street Harbor and the Lake (63rd and Hayes, where we will hopefully spot the owl).  We will then drive over to the Point for the 5 pm moonrise. 
The meters are expensive if you park right by the East entrance. It is cheaper ($1 an hour) if you turn left into the parking lot. Parking is free if once you are in the parking lot, you drive south past the boats, over the stone bridge and park near the tennis courts. Hope to see you there!   FREE EVENT.  For more information go to passitonchicago.com or call 773-913-2030×3.   Children welcome. Check here if rain date is needed and  Call if you can’t find us: 773-913-2030×3.

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Lots of herons and almost grown ducklings

I took all these photos in the last couple of days at Jackson Park!
Our next nature walks are Sunday August 4 at 12:30 pm or Tuesday August 6 at 6:30. Meet at the east door of the Science and Industry Museum (Space Center and Ominmax Entrance)    Come join us!

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green heron

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green heron

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fledgling green heron

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close-up of same fledgling green heron

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mallard with green heron

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mallard  ducklings (almost grown-up)

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great blue heron

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close-up of great blue heron

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fledgling black-crowned night heron  (checking me out)

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close-up of fledgling black-crowned night heron

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overexposed photo shows you the normal neck length of fledgling black-crowned night heron are in different positions

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black-crowned night heron

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great blue heron– again interesting to see how different herons can look when their necks are

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great blue heron

Sunday nature walks at 12:30 – WILL RESUME IN SPRING

No More 12:30pm Nature on Sundays for the Winter!  See you in Spring!

Enjoy nature your way!
Free of charge  and good for all ages
12:30 pm  on Sundays  starting August 4 through Sunday September 15
Just bring yourself and soak up some beauty OR
Bring your own art supplies to sketch a flower
or a  caterpillar or a landscape OR
Learn how to use a “plant key”  to identify the things
you see or… enjoy nature your way!
Bring binoculars if you’ve got them, bring your eyes if you don’t
Meet at the East entrance of Museum of Science and Industry
Museum  (Space Center and Omnimax Door)
Call for more info:  773 913 2030×3
http://www.passitonchicago.com

Photo: Killdeer chick growing up in a Home Depot parking lot in Chicago

Nature Walks for Kids (Wednesdays) – WILL RESUME IN SUMMER

Guided nature walks for children and their caregivers!

Free of Charge   All age friendly
10 am every Wednesday starting August 7 through September 11
Meet at  the East entrance of the Museum of Science and Industry
(Space Center and  Omnimax Door)
We’ll explore bobolink meadow taking time to admire butterfiies,
caterpillars, birds, dragonflies and prairie flowers.
Call for more info:  773 913 2030×3
http://www.passitonchicago.com

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Come and we’ll try to find this interesting young mallard, photo taken July 28 2013

General Nature Walk Information – Schedule– nature walks on hold for now

Despite being one of the largest cities of the world, Chicago still provides many opportunities to enjoy nature.

WHO:

Nature Walks are put on by Pass It On Chicago.  Jane Masterson is a local photographer and Hyde Park Nature Walk Guide.

WHAT:

On Nature Walks, which are generally scheduled on the New Moon and Full Moon each month, we walk through Jackson Park, and on the Full Moon Walks, after the Nature Walk,  we head over to Promontory Point to watch the Full Moon rise over the Lake.

WHERE:

Jackson Park and The Point.  We meet at the East door of the Museum of Science and Industry (for more information, feel free to call us at 773 – 502 – 3159). You can get to The Point by walking through the underpass at 55th Street and Lake Shore Drive.

WHY:

Nature Walks are FREE and provide many benefits to your overall health and well-being!

WHEN:

Following are the 2017 New Moons and Full Moons, when our Nature Walks are scheduled (feel free to call with any questions or up-to-the-minute schedule updates 773 – 502 – 3159)

Moon watch at 7:23 on Sunday February  12, come a little before if you want to see the moon rise. If you can’t make the meeting but have ideas on how we can make Hyde Park more dog friendly,  please leave a message at 773 913 2030.  Meet at the lake near the Field House on the Point.  There is a parking lot and an underpass at 55th and Lake Shore Drive.

To request a Nature Walk or contact me, please fill in the contact form below:

Weekly Bird Walks in Jackson Park

Patricia Durkin (pat.durkin@comcast.net) organizes weekly bird walks in Wooded Island.  Walks are year round every Wednesday at 7:15 a.m. (currently cancelled due to work in Jackson Park) and Saturday at 8 a.m.  Birders meet at the Darrow Bridge which is located south of the Museum of Science and Industry.  Ample parking is available east of Darrow Bridge and is accessible from 5800 South Lake Shore Drive.  Wooded Island bird reports are available at http://www.chicagoaudubon.org

Website with Plant and Animal Photos – Jackson Park and vicinity

http://www.naturalhistorychicago.com

Yahoo Group run by Illinois Birders

For a more extensive list of what birds are present in Chicago and surrounding areas, email Ilbirds@yahoogroups.com.  If you set your subscription to digest, you will receive a group of posts (instead of receiving individual posts).

Check out this listserv online

http://www.experienceemiquon.com/content/all-ibet-listings