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The wingspan of the American white pelican is second only to the California condor. (Skeeze / Pixabay)

Join a hike on Sunday to get a look at American white pelicans, one of North America's largest birds. A flock is hanging out in Will County during its annual fall migration. 

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A Reduced Pressure Zone valve, attached to hydrant, is designed to prevent backflow, but it also prevented many gardeners from accessing water this growing season. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

Community gardens and urban farms were left scrambling to comply with a new city policy related to hydrant access that left some without water throughout the entire 2020 growing season. 

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Monarch butterflies have started their 2,000-mile migration south to Mexico. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

The annual migration of monarch butterflies is currently at its peak in the Chicago area. Several roosting sites have been spotted around town as the creatures use the city as a pit stop on their 2,000-mile journey to Mexico.

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The Windy City Coop Tour showcases Chicagoans’ backyard chickens. (Chicagoland Chicken Enthusiasts / Facebook)

Chicagoans are raising chickens, growing food and experimenting with all sorts of sustainable-living practices — all in their urban backyards. See how it’s done during this weekend’s annual Windy City Coop and Eco-Yards Tour. 

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Alison Newberry and Matt Sparapani in Mount Kinabalu, Borneo. (Courtesy of Alison Newberry and Matt Sparapani)

Matt Sparapani and Alison Newberry weren’t planning to be in Chicago this summer. But like many of us, they had to rethink their plans. What the local teachers have learned about the natural areas of Chicago.

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Chicago’s Southeast Side. (WTTW News)

We speak with Angela Tovar, the city’s recently named sustainability officer, about a new air quality ordinance and improving Chicago’s environment.

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Hazy skies over Chicago are due to smoke from West Coast wildfires. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

Smoke from the West Coast wildfires has drifted into northern Illinois, creating milky white or gray skies over what should be a sunny Chicago, according to the National Weather Service.

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The original Civilian Conservation Corps planted billions of trees. A renewed CCC could do the same. (Openlands / Facebook)

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin is proposing the creation of a modern-day Civilian Conservation Corps as a way to put Americans to work while also directing resources toward the nation’s long neglected conservation projects.

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Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020. (WTTW News)

Will new EPA regulations allow a Wisconsin power plant to dump more toxic metals into Lake Michigan? Chicago Tribune reporter Michael Hawthorne explains.

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(North Park Village Nature Center / Facebook)

In a win for nature lovers and fans of open space, the Chicago City Council voted on Wednesday to keep 100-plus acres in North Park protected from development, permanently.

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(WTTW News)

After a three-year, student-led grassroots campaign, the Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners voted to officially remove the name of Stephen Douglas from what’s now temporarily known as Park 218. 

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The state champ bald cypress on the Illinois Big Tree Register. (University of Illinois Extension-Forestry / Facebook)

Of Illinois’ 183 native tree species, nearly 140 are represented on the Illinois Big Tree Register as a state “champ,” leaving 46 species still in need of a big discovery. Here’s how to nominate a tree for inclusion on the list.

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Thompson Strawberry Farm has been around for 70 years, but this is the first year it is decorated with sunflowers. (Courtesy Scott Thompson)

Everyone could use a little sunshine in their life right now, so a Wisconsin farmer decided that’s what he was going to do, and planted more than 2 million sunflowers in his fields.

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(StockSnap / Pixabay)

Make the most of the three-day weekend by exploring the Chicago region’s abundant hiking and biking trails.  

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Hundreds of millions of birds are migrating through the U.S. Sept. 3-6. (hollandevens / Pixabay)

Chicago’s bright lights lure birds from their migratory path. With hundreds of thousands of birds passing overhead this weekend, the city needs to dim its glow. 

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(ArtisticOperations / Pixabay)

The coronavirus pandemic has made internet access essential and many of Chicago's Black and Brown communities hit hardest by COVID-19 also lack internet access and devices.