NOTICE:
This newsletter was originally sent on Dec 3, 2013.
December 2013
Naturally Yours
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Help Name a New Natural Area

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The City of Fort Collins is asking citizens to help name a natural area in north Fort Collins. This 31–acre natural area is located along on the Cache la Poudre River between Mulberry Street and Lincoln Avenue. It will be transferred by the Woodward Inc. to the Natural Areas Department and is currently closed as the new Woodward Technology Center is constructed. Suggestions for names are being taken until December 10.  Learn more >>>

Dream of Being a Ranger?

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Did you think you would grow up to be a park ranger? It’s not too late! You can become a Volunteer Ranger Assistant and help park and natural area rangers accomplish much of their important work. Larimer County’s Department of Natural Resources and The City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department are now accepting Volunteer Ranger Assistant applications. The training will be in late February. Volunteers attend 20 hours of training, and are asked to contribute 20 hours of service in return. Applications are due December 20.  Learn more >>>

Winter Skygazing

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Skies are often clear and dark in the winter making it a great season for seeing stars, constellations and planets. Everyone is invited to these free skygazing events:

Saturday, December 7 and Saturday, January 4, 7-9 p.m. Fossil Creek Reservoir Regional Open Space.  Each month volunteers from the Northern Colorado Astronomical Society provide telescopes for your viewing pleasure and share their knowledge about stars, planets, galaxies, and more. Dress warmly and bring a blanket or chair to sit on. Meet in the parking lot. No registration required. 

Comet Viewing, Saturday, December 14, 5-7 a.m. Fossil Creek Reservoir Regional Open Space. Come in the early morning hours to get a chance to view Comets ISON and Lovejoy. Telescopes will be provided by the Northern Colorado Astronomical Society. You'll also get to see Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars if the skies are clear. Dress warmly!

Natural Areas Recognized with Award

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The City of Fort Collins continues to make strides as a leader in sustainability and recently received the 2013 Special Recognition Award from the Sustainable Living Association.
The City was honored for reducing the impacts of recent Poudre River flooding primarily through long-term visioning, land conservation and partnerships between Fort Collins Utilities’ Stormwater Utility and Natural Areas. Natural Areas help absorb floodwaters and provide many other values such as recreation and economic value to the community.

Enhancement Grantees Announced

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The City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department awarded five applicants Natural Areas Enhancement funds from the $15,000 available in 2013.  Funds for planting native trees, shrubs, and wildflowers on certified natural areas managed by Home Owner Associations were received by Fox Creek Homeowners Association ($1,020), Fox Hills Homeowners Association ($2,455), Harvest Park Master Association ($2,429), and Registry Ridge Homeowners Association ($2,500).  Fossil Creek Meadows Homeowners Association received ($6,596) to help fund Russian olive removal on their certified natural area. The Enhancement Fund supports projects that benefit wildlife and native plants on non-public lands. Learn more >>>

Stewardship

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You can help natural areas and the environment through easy and practical stewardship actions. For example, by keeping domestic cats indoors, you'll be protecting wildlife. And you'll be a  responsible owner by preventing your cat from being lost, killed or stolen. Indoor cats help birds too. Outdoor cats kill a surprising number of birds and small mammals. The Smithsonian estimates that outdoor and feral cats kill 1.4 billion birds a year. Domestic cats are not part of natural ecosystems, they compete with native predators, and they can transmit diseases to wildlife. Indoor cats live longer, healthier lives. City code section 4-93 prohibits pet animals at large, including cats. For these reasons, the City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department encourages you to keep your cat indoors. Learn more from the American Bird Conservancy and The Wildlife Society.

 

naturalareaslogo.gif Natural Areas News is published on the first Tuesday of the month with occasional special editions. Newsletter comments are welcome. Please contact Zoe Whyman, City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Community Relations Manager, 970-221-6311 or zwhyman@fcgov.com.

To learn more about Natural Areas, visit our website.

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