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Chicago outdoors: Vulture in Chicago, Spring Bird Count, fishing electronics training, IL fish stockings

Beautiful photo of a vulture in Chicago, a different sort of Spring Bird Count, fishing electronics training in coronavirus times and update on Illinois fish stockings are in the notes package.

A turkey vulture overlooking Rosehill Cemetery. Credit: Paul Vriend
A turkey vulture overlooking Rosehill Cemetery.
Paul Vriend

Notes come from all around Chicago outdoors.


“I’ve never gotten close enough to get a picture of this bird when I vacation up in Michigan,” Paul Vriend emailed. “So, I thought it was convenient when this turkey vulture landed on a tree overlooking Rosehill Cemetery on Balmoral Avenue.”

WOTW, the celebration of wild stories and photos around Chicago outdoors, runs most weeks in the special two-page outdoors section in the Sun-Times Sports Saturday. Submit nominations by message on Facebook (Dale Bowman), on Twitter (@BowmanOutside) and Instagram (@BowmanOutside) or email (



June 4 and 6: Newark, (815) 210-4995


Turkey hunting: North zone, fourth season, through Wednesday, May 6; fifth (final), Thursday, May 7, to May 14; south, fifth (final), through Thursday, May 7.


“Do you have any news/info on fish stocking for this year? The scuttlebutt is that there will be no stocking.” Zachary Arnold

A: Good question and Illinois fisheries chief Mike McClelland had a good answer, “We do plan to conduct the general fish stockings this year. Our hatchery production staff are working on site, while practicing social-distancing procedures, to keep fish alive and well at all three locations to continue fish production for 2020.”


1972: First year of the Illinois Spring Bird Count, started by Vern Kleen (thanks to a blog by Chicago Audubon Society’s Alan Anderson); this year’s count will go on May 9, but, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, a new line has been added by the Illinois Audubon Society for those “birding from a `House’ or `Nearby.’ “


“Additionally, I will now offer Virtual Lowrance on the Water Training sessions where I will no longer be restricted by a clients location or have to worry about social distancing.”

Mark O’Neill, adjusting to the times and now offering sessions via Zoom, details at