Birds, Bats, Books, More with Missaukee Conservation District Exploring Nature |


Since 1949, the Missaukee Conservation District, one of the state’s 75 conservation districts, has contributed to the growth of the Missaukee County economy through a locally elected board of directors and, in accordance with state law, responds to the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Funding for the MCD is through grants, local and national partners, sales of flat books / seedlings / native plants and millage.

It is MCD’s mission to provide leadership in promoting and protecting our county’s soil, water and other natural resources through education and technical assistance. Numerous workshops and educational awareness activities take place to accomplish this mission. If you want to know more about any topic, please contact the office and we will do our best to satisfy you.

Although there are many changes underway, the conservation and belief in the protection and provision of natural resource education will persist. Here is a brief list of what’s planned through September. Stay tuned for other events too! Events will be posted on and Facebook with details, including registration required, location, time and cost (if applicable). The six Let’s Read Lake City events are not listed.

January 21 Connection with conservation books

10 a.m. to 11 a.m. then every third Friday of each month, Ardis Missaukee District Library

Do you like reading? Do you like nature ? Join our new conservation book club. We will read and discuss fiction and non-fiction books on topics related to conservation, environment, ecology and nature.

January 25 Crow for the birds

10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Missaukee Conservation District

Come learn the basics of backyard bird watching and common feeding bird identification. You will also learn how to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count to help scientists who study birds.

January 20 and 27 and wings, beaks and feathers – Oh, my God!

February 3 and 10

3 p.m. to 4 p.m., Ardis Missaukee District Library

Become a bird detective as we explore the world of birds. Find out what makes a bird a bird, why birds behave the way they do, what birds need to survive, how to identify some common birds, how you can feed birds at home and how you can help scientists who study birds.

February 16 Wild for Worms

4 p.m. to 5 p.m., Ardis Missaukee District Library

Learn how to turn food scraps into compost with red wigglers. You will build your own worm bin and learn how to take care of your worms.

Friday February 25 Forest Carbon Credits – Are They Right For You?

3 p.m. to 5 p.m., Cadillac sector

A forest owner usually only gets a financial benefit when the trees are harvested. Forest carbon credits offer landowners a chance to be paid for trees while they are still growing. This workshop will present the concept of forest carbon credits.

February, date to be determined Strategic use of fertilizers

Place to be determined

Workshop for farmers on how to get the most from your manure and fertilizer this year.

March 21 Find out more about your property from open source websites

Location to be determined. (Canton Cadillac or Garfield)

The digital world we live in offers a forest owner many sources of digital information about an individual property. From different types of satellite imagery to soil mapping and even wetland restrictions, all can be found for free on open source websites.

April 30 Let’s build a rain garden!

9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., MSU AgBioResearch Station

Learn the basics of creating your own rain garden to capture runoff before it pollutes our local waterways. A rain garden will create a beautiful landscaping addition to your property and provide native plants for butterflies, bees, other insects and birds.

April 20 and May 4 Spring Pool Patrol in Missaukee County

10 a.m. to 11 a.m., Ardis Missaukee District Library

Explore these unique seasonal wetlands that provide homes and breeding grounds for frogs, salamanders, turtles, insects, other wildlife and plants.

April 30 and May 1 Annual seedling sale

10 a.m. – 6 p.m., April 30 and 9 a.m. to noon or until exhaustion MSU AgBioResearch Station

Seedlings will be available to order from January 2022. Most of the varieties offered are indigenous and all are selected for optimal growth in our region. The order deadline is April 15, 2022. Visit to view purchasing choices.

May 13 Spring Creek Watch

9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Missaukee Conservation District Community Hall

Spend a day on the river and help collect aquatic insects and determine the health of rivers in Missaukee County. Equipment, training and lunch provided.

May 21 Management of small pine plantations

10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in the Manton region

Decades ago, red pines were planted throughout the countryside in small areas, often at the edges of fields. Many of these plantations are overdue for thinning and other active management. This workshop will explain the dilemma these plantations face and discuss possible solutions.

June 7 Managing for diversity in your northern hardwood forest

10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in the Lake City area

The northern deciduous forest has lost its American elm, its white ash, and is currently losing its American beech. Many see the paper birch, black cherries and red oak dying. What is happening to our forests and what can we do to help this precious part of our natural environment.

June 18 Let’s get into a food plot!

9 a.m. to noon, 7327 S. Morey Road, McBain

Learn how to “take a soil sample”, what to plant when, how to improve the property with forestry or land management plans through NRCS, how to keep costs to a minimum.

Sep 24 Marking Hardwoods for Landowners

9 a.m. to 1 p.m., in the Kalkaska region (exact directions will be given to registrants)

This hands-on outdoor workshop is designed for owners of small northern hardwood woodlots. He will explain how to selectively mark their own hardwoods for a harvest. The objective is to teach how to select trees to be felled with an emphasis on improving the quality of the remaining stand; thin out the stand to improve growth while maintaining diversity and a good minimum density. Other topics will include how to conserve and manage important elements of wildlife habitat such as rare and sensitive habitats and species, pole trees, cavity trees and coarse woody debris.

For more information on volunteering, programs, and partnerships, contact (231) 839-7193, [email protected] or drop by the Missaukee Conservation District, 6180 W. Sanborn Road, Lake City.

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