February 27, 2015

Touch of Nature to host bird-watching hikes

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Touch of Nature Environmental Center is hosting a series of bird-watching hikes in March. 

Vicki Lang-Mendenhall, staff member and bird enthusiast, will lead the expeditions beginning at 10 a.m. each Friday in March, starting March 6.  Hikers will meet for a brief introduction at the center’s administrative office, located eight miles south of Carbondale off Giant City Road. Organizers recommend participants wear comfortable shoes and bring water bottles. Participants will explore the birds, plants and other animals to be seen at Touch of Nature. 

The free tours are open to all Touch of Nature members. For more information, or to become a member, call 618/453-1121 or visit the website at www.ton.siu.edu

Touch of Nature supporters can acquire memberships beginning at $20 and there are a number of benefits including invitations to members-only events and programs, a subscription to the bi-monthly e-newsletter and annual report along with a personalized membership card, a 10 percent discount at Shawnee Trails, and the good feeling that comes from knowing your membership fee is helping educate people about the importance of protecting natural resources. Memberships of $50 or more include additional perks such as a limited-edition Touch of Nature T-shirt.