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Chicago Nature Lovers Unite At UIC For Wild Things 2013

By Julia Weeman in News on Jan 27, 2013 10:00PM

2013_01_27_wildthings.jpg The fifth biennial Wild Things conference is this Saturday at UIC. Described as a "gathering of the inspiring souls who live and breathe Chicago nature," the conference is open to all nature lovers. The day-long Chicago wilderness conference for people and nature is organized in "tracks" designed for everyone from newcomers to experts and professionals.

The keynote speakers are Doug Tallamy and Joel S. Brown. Tallamy is Professor and Chair of the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware. He will discuss how landscaping has fragmented the natural habitats that support biodiversity, which is essential to our ecosystem. His talk will include how we can reconnect these habitats by expanding existing greenways, building riparian corridors, and changing the landscaping paradigm. Brown is an evolutionary ecologist and professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at UIC. He will discuss how quickly and in what ways the species around us are evolving and what our responses to these changes around us should be.

The conference will also feature book signings and more than 90 large and small group sessions on a variety of topics including botany, zoology, advocacy, history, and culture. The sessions will be interactive and extremely informative - with opportunities for attendees to ask questions and learn more about how they can contribute to the effort to conserve natural ecosystems and habitats.

The conference will be held in the Student Center East at the University of Illinois at Chicago, located at 750 South Halsted. Online registration for the event is now closed, but walk-in registration is $40, payable via cash or check made out to the National Audubon Society.