Chicago outdoors: White opossum, giant channel catfish, cerulean warbler, caution on roads/turtles

A good sighting of a cerulean warbler, a white opossum visit, the world-record channel catfish and a caution on turtles on our roadways are among the notes from around Chicago outdoors and beyond.

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A cerulean warbler, “ever-snazzy,” in Cook County.

Annabelle Hladik

Notes come from around Chicago outdoors and beyond.


Annabelle Hladik, a naturalist aide at Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, photographed this “ever-snazzy” cerulean warbler, in a rare appearance for our area, a Wolf Road Woods. ``He is a beautiful reminder of the incredible species diversity we see all through Chicagoland and beyond in Illinois during migration,” emailed Hladik who, a year ago, sent a nice find of a northern shrike (“butcher bird”) in Orland Park.

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. To make submissions, email or contact me on Facebook (Dale Bowman), Twitter (@BowmanOutside) or Instagram (@BowmanOutside).

Worth a second look.

A cerulean warbler, “ever-snazzy,” in Cook County. Credit: Annabelle Hdalik

Annabelle Hdalik


“Saw this white possum [last week, below] about noon, so cute! We see this little guy every spring behind our house in Grayslake, walking around under our bird feeder.”

A: District wildlife biologist Stefanie Fitzsimons messaged, ``They certainly aren’t common. It’s not albino, just a very white color phase.”

A white opossum in Grayslake. Provided by Jane Franz

A white opossum in Grayslake.

Provided by Jane Franz


58: Pounds of the world-record channel catfish, caught by W.H. Whaley July 7, 1964, from Santee-Cooper Reservoir, South Carolina, according to the International Game Fish Association.


“For their eggs to survive, turtles must find just the right spot for their nests. Some turtles must travel up to a mile to find the right conditions.”

Dan Thompson, DuPage Forest Preserve District ecologist, in the District urging driver caution now



June 2 and 4: Newark,


Next Saturday, May 14, or May 15: Introductory wingshooting clinic, Des Plaines State Fish and Wildlife Area, (815)423-5326. Click here for registration.


Next Saturday, May 14: FRV Challunge on the Chain, top prize $5,000


Wednesday, May 11: Second lottery, fiream and muzzleloader deer permit applications, begins

Thursday, May 12: Final day, fifth spring turkey season, north zone


Next Saturday, May 14: Boat America, Chicago, Don Leonard,


Tuesday, May 10: Indiana guide Keith Cortopassi, Chicagoland Muskie Hunters chapter of Muskies, Inc., North Branch Pizza & Burger Co., Glenview, 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, May 10: Capt. Pat Harrison, Salmon Unlimited, Thornwood Restaurant & Lounge, Wood Dale, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, May 11: Mike Schoof on Willow Slough renovations, Perch America, Indiana Harbor Yacht Club, East Chicago Marina, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, May 11: Capt. Phil Stodola, on seasonal progression of Green Bay Muskies, Fox River Valley chapter of Muskies, Inc., Schaumburg Golf Club, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, May 11: John DeMay, “A Jig for Every Season,” Lake Geneva Fishing Club, Poplar Creek Bowl, Hoffman Estates, 6 p.m.

Thursday, May 12: Johnny Wilkins, “How the Average Angler Can Catch More Fish All the Time,” Riverside Fishing Club, LaGrange American Legion, 6:30 p.m.

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