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Illinois Department of Natural Resources

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Forestry Best Management Practices

Forestry Best Management Practices (BMPs) are practices that protect our forest, soil, and water resources while allowing appropriate use of the resources. The following voluntary guidelines for BMPs will help to ensure that Illinois' forested sites are not degraded, that the waters associated ith these forests are of the highest quality compatible with natural processes, and that our forest resources are wisely utilized. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources strongly encourages their use by everyone involved with growing, managing, and harvesting trees. These BMPs were developed cooperatively by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, the Illinois Forestry Development Council, Southern Illinois University, and University of Illinois.

Illinois Big Tree Register

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources initiated the Illinois Big Tree Register in 1962 to appreciate, discover, and record the largest native tree species in the state. The Illinois Big Tree Register is part of a cooperative effort between the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, and the National Register of Big Trees sponsored by American Forests® and The Davey Tree Expert Company. The University of Illinois, in cooperation with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, would like to encourage every citizen of this great state to search our forests, parks, and front yards for future Big Tree champions. We hope that in searching for these trees, citizens will become more aware of the vital importance of Illinois’ rural and community forest resource.

Kids and Education

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources's (IDNR's) Division of Education is responsible for the development and dissemination of educational programs and materials and for training in their use. On this Web site you will be able to find information about educational materials for use in the classroom, grant opportunities, teacher workshops and more.

Earth Stewardship Day

Earth Stewardship Day, created by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, Illinois Department of Agriculture, and Illinois Department of Natural Resources, is an event for 4th grade students in Sangamon County to learn about the importance of sustainability and natural resource management in a stimulating environment. Web page includes details about sponsors, photos from previous years, and upcoming events.

Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)

The mission of the Conservation Stewardship Program of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources is to encourage landowners to manage their lands in a way that preserves native plants, animals, and natural communities. This is done by restoring native species, reducing the impacts of invasive species, increasing the population of species of greatest conservation need, and reducing forest fragmentation in Illinois. Website includes basic information about the program, links for species identification, application forms, management tools, and other related resources.

People: Nurture & Nature

This report by Chicago Wilderness discusses the decline in children's outdoor play over the years as a result of technological advances. It also talks about nature-deficit disorder and why it is so important for children to have unstructured play in the outdoors. Lastly, it mentions how to get children outside and into nature and the benefits that will come from that. Produced with support from USDA Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, and Chicago Zoological Society.

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