Outdoor Report: Nov. 22
District rangers continue to report deer on the move as is typical this time of year. Deer become more active as they search for mates and can easily be seen in natural areas and along roadsides. Drivers should be cautious, particularly near areas marked with deer crossing signs. Read more about tips for safe driving during the rut here.
In fishing notes, anglers should work along the bottom to locate fish that have gone deeper for warmer waters adjacent to their wintering sites. Reports from Songbird Slough note that northern pike and largemouth bass can still be found. At Grove Lake at Wood Dale Grove, the trout bite has slowed substantially but a few are still being caught on commercial dough bait. A few crappie have been caught there, too, using minnows suspended under a bobber.
In birding notes, sandhill cranes continue to be seen on their migration flights. If you hear a faint trilling call, look up to see if you can spot the flock high in the air. Bald eagles have once again been observed along the DesPlaines River at Waterfall Glen. At the marsh on the east side of Maple Lake at Meacham Grove, about a dozen northern shovelers were spotted in the water.
At Willowbrook Wildlife Center, black-capped chickadees have been moving through the trees. Naturalists there also expect to see goldfinches and American robins picking berries soon, too.
The woodlands at Willowbrook have also seen visits from our area’s common woodpeckers. The downy and red-bellied species are frequent visitors, and the occasional hairy woodpecker visits, too. These woodpeckers all have some combination of black and white plumage, with some sporting patches of red. In our drab winter woodlands, their high-contrast coloration makes them an easy and entertaining sight to see. Fullersburg Woods is another location of frequent sightings of woodpeckers.