April Natural Events

Explore the natural events unfolding throughout Illinois this April!

The rare lesser scaup can be seen at Emiquon this month!

  • Kankakee Sands is full of color while sand phlox, sand cress and Penn’s sedge are in bloom, black oak trees begin budding new green leaves and glass lizards come out of their winter sleep and move about the preserve.
  • Grassy Slough Preserve in the Cache River Wetlands is swarming with life as male prothonotary warblers arrive, blue-winged teal and kingfishers migrate through, bluebirds and Carolina wrens begin nesting and indigo buntings return from the south.
  • Waterfowl species such as the rare lesser scaup are increasing and diversifying, while American bald eagles incubate their eggs or feed hatchlings in their nests near Sister Creek at Emiquon.
  • As a result of prescribed fires last month and early this month, the prairies at Nachusa Grasslands are lush and green and early migratory birds come back to call out their territory.
  • Purple-leaf sand cherry begins showing its pale pink, fragrant flowers while prairie willow stalks shoot up in the grasslands at Indian Boundary Prairies.
  • The waters at Spunky Bottoms begin to sing with the arrival of warmer nights and spring peeper frogs.
  • Ruby-crowned kinglets, blue-winged teals, loggerhead shrikes and upland sandpipers all return to Midewin this month, while Prairie Creek Woods is full of spring wildflowers like spring beauties, prairie trillium and Virginia bluebells.