Environment & Outdoors

cool.as.a.cucumber/Flickr

There are a couple of big plant sale events coming up in the Northland, but given the weather recently, it's a great relief to know you won't have to camp overnight in line to get plants.

Show up at 4:00 am, maybe, but not camp overnight! 

Jack Pearce [via Flickr]

Naturalist Larry Weber talks about these mid-May mornings that are "beyond description" with so much happening as nature awakes.  Also, because leaves have not fully grown out yet, it is a greater opportunity to see both flora in fauna as you explore the woods of northern Minnesota.

Kodey Weiss

This week, we’re featuring some entries in the Audio Story Challenge at UMD.

Here’s how it works.

  • Journalism students had to tell a story in two to three-and-a-half minutes.
  • The story has to include the sound of air or water
  • it has to include a mention of food
  • it has to include the voices of two people whose ages are at least 20 years apart.
  • it has to be a true story.

UMD Journalism major Kodey Weiss is no longer on academic probation.

Paige Oswald

This week, we’re featuring some entries in the Audio Story Challenge at UMD.

Here’s how it works.

©Lisa Johnson

Whether you want to hunt them or gawk at them, wild turkeys are moving north, expanding from their traditional range in southern Minnesota.

Smart, adaptable and with a wide variety of foods they like, wild turkeys are heading north all on their own.  And that's got hunters and bird watchers alike excited.

This week's warmup has spring things bustin' out all over, from frogs calling to dragonfly and spider web sightings, to new migrants, spring wildflowers and white pelicans hanging out on the St. Louis River before they head north.

Raptor Education Group, Inc., Antigo, WI

HF 888 is headed to conference committee in the House of Representatives. A provision in the bill would prohibit the DNR from adopting rules that restrict the use of lead ammunition.

The "collateral damage" of lead shot has long been a topic of concern for KUMD's Laura Erickson, who joined us this morning to talk about it.

Alan Weir/Flickr

If winter storm warnings on May Day weren't bad enough ... the weather was still lousy for World Naked Gardening Day.

And yes, that's a thing.  You can look it up.

Lisa Johnson

April is unpredictable, says Larry Weber.  It went along predictably enough, lulling us into a false sense of security and then, predictably, it became ... unpredictable.

Bob McCloughan of Bearskin Lodge /Visit Cook County

There's a long tradition of neighbors helping neighbors in the wild areas of northern Minnesota ... so when a neighbor fell through the ice into Hungry Jack Lake, other neighbors moblized to help.

We're finally caught up on moisture for the month; yes, snow in April is "normal;" we'll have 14 hours of daylight come Sunday and the white pelicans have returned to the St. Louis River.

Ginger Juel may be a UMD alumna, but she's still pretty passionate about what goes on on campus.

She's like to see the U jettison the use of herbicides - even the current practice of "targeted application" - altogether.

squamatologist/Flickr

Larry reminds us that April 9 of last year broke an overnight low temperature record, silver maples have gone bloomin' crazy, the lake effect is slowing the progress of spring the closer you get to it, and he's celebrating over twenty years of tracking frog and toad populations in northeastern Minnesota.

You can find out more about the Minnesota DNR's Frog and Toad Calling survey, plus find a number of helpful links right here.

Scott Schumacher/Flickr

As Minnesotans gear up for the second of our two seasons (road construction), hikers, bikers, nature lovers and casual strollers prepare for the summer-long closing (any day now) of a five mile section of the Willard Munger State Trail between Grand Avenue and Becks Road in West Duluth.

As soon as spring road restrictions allow the DNR to move in the big equipment, they'll set to work repairing chunks of the trail still damaged from the 2012 floods.  In addition, there are some new trail standards that will require some improvements to the trail.

Minnesota DNR

Even if you don't understand a word your friend Jeremiah the bullfrog says, the DNR still wants you to listen to him.  

Actually, they're looking for volunteers all across the state to spend  a little time this weekend being "citizen scientists" and, just as with various bird counts through the year, listening for frog and toad calls and jotting down data. (And there are still some routes open up here in our neck of the woods)

This is the 21st year of the survey - and the statewide volunteers who make it possible.  And this year, there's even an app.

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