Snowy owls, marsh sunrise, canvasbacks: Notes on Chicago outdoors

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Notes from around Chicago outdoors.

FIELD NOTES

WILD OF THE WEEK

Rea Zanin captured one of the many snowy owls around Chicago on the north end of McCormick Place.

Wild of the Week, the celebration of wild scenes around Chicago outdoors, runs when warranted on Sundays on the Sun-Times outdoors page. Send nominations by Facebook (Dale Bowman), Twitter (@BowmanOutside) or email

BIG NUMBER

246,125

Canvasbacks estimated by Aaron Yetter on the Illinois Natural History Survey’s aerial waterfowl surveyWednesdayon Pool 19 of the Mississippi River. That’s more than a quarter of the breeding population in North America. Click here to read more.

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DALE’S MAILBAG

Email: ‘‘All the talk about snowy owls gave me a flashback to June 1971. We were on an exploratory trip to Waskaiowaka Lake at the headwaters of the Little Churchill River in northeastern Manitoba. The camp owner had found this deserted baby snowy owl, made him a pet and named him River. That is my arm he is perched upon.’’

— Steve Statland

A: Reminded me of my favorite sighting of a snowy owl. While driving our youngest to sleep on New Year’s Eve 2005, I had a snowy fly out of a ditch in a rare sighting in Iroquois County.

LAST WORD

‘‘Any day I can stand watching the sun rise over the marsh is a good day.’’

Stan Weimer,site superintendent at Spring Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area

WILD TIMES

FISH GATHERING

Wednesday: Walleyes Unlimited swap night (no guest fee),7 p.m., Gurnee American Legion,walleyesunlimitedusa.org.

HUNTER SAFETY

(Click here for full package of northeast Illinois hunter safety classes)

Jan. 6-7: Morris, smittythepainter@yahoo.com

Jan. 19-20: Wheeling, huntersafety@sbcglobal.net.

ILLINOIS SEASONS/PERMITS

Tuesday: Duck season ends in the central zone.

Tuesday–Jan. 9: Second dove season.

Thursday–Sunday: First late-winter/CWD deer season.

Jan. 11: Deadline, second lottery, spring turkey applications, click here for info and to apply

CENTRAL ILLINOIS YOUTH GOOSE HUNT

Friday: Deadline to register for the annual hunt on Jan. 14-15, call (217) 785-8060

DUCKS UNLIMITED

(Click here for the general list of Illinois DU events)

PHEASANTS FOREVER

(Click here for general list of Illinois PF events)

NATIONAL WILD TURKEY FEDERATION

(Click here for general list of banquets and events)


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