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  • Over time, an invasive plant loses its toxic edge

    Dr. Richard Lankau and plant ecologist Greg Spyreas, both of the Illinois Natural History Survey, just published an article in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) about the potency of garlic mustard over time. Garlic mustard is an invasive species that injects a toxin into the soil. Research conducted by INHS researchers indicates that over time the toxin becomes less potent.

  • Record-Wettest August in Illinois

    The statewide average rainfall for August was 6.89 inches, 3.30 inches above normal and the wettest August on record, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • Illinois Has a Cool, Dry August

    August was cool across the state and dry in most places in Illinois, capping off a summer that was cool and wet, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • Cool, Wet Summer in Illinois

    Based on preliminary data for Illinois, this was the 11th coolest and 8th wettest summer since statewide records began in 1895. The average temperature for June–August was 71.4 degrees, 2.4 degrees below normal. The total precipitation for June–August was 15.2 inches, 3.6 inches above normal, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey 

  • A Wet August Wraps Up a Cool, Wet Summer in Illinois

    The 12th wettest August in Illinois finishes out the 10th wettest summer on record. While August was slightly warmer than average, the summer was cooler than average, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • clouds with pink lining

    State Climatologist: Varied temperatures and rainfall and a derecho make for a wild August

    August was slightly cooler and much drier than average across Illinois. The preliminary statewide average August temperature was 72.7 degrees, 0.9 degrees below the 30-year normal and the 45th coolest on record. Preliminary statewide average total precipitation for August was 2.01 inches, 1.58 inches below than the 30-year normal and the 15th driest on record.

  • Cool, Dry August for Illinois

    August statewide precipitation was below normal, ending an eight-month streak of above-normal precipitation in Illinois that began in December 2007, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.sws.uiuc.edu).

  • dry cracked soil

    Unequal August precipitation leads to drought in Illinois

    August 2019 will be remembered for remarkable differences in monthly precipitation totals across Illinois, as well as the first appearance of drought in the state since September 2018.

  • 1000 more endangered mussels released in Illinois rivers

    Over the course of a week, 1000 endangered mussels were collected from under a bridge construction site in Pennsylvania, packed for safe transport, quarantined, marked, measured, and released into new sites in Vermilion County, Illinois. This is the third relocation from Pennsylvania to Illinois as part of the Species Survival Plan for two endangered mussels, the northern riffleshell and the clubshell. Read the entire story from the U of I News Bureau, INHS, and the News Gazette.

  • Western corn rootworm developing resistance to rotation

    INHS Behavioral Entomologist Joe Spencer is looking at rotation-resistant western corn rootworms, which are causing severe injury to crops. Crops modified to resist infestation by insects and crop rotation are some of the methods to control injurious insects, but some rootworms have developed resistance to these mechanisms. Repeated use of the modified corn year after year has given the rootworms time to adapt. Producers are encouraged to watch their fields for injury. This story was reported in InvestorPlace and the Bulletin.

  • August was Cool and Dry in Illinois

    The statewide average temperature in August was 70.6 degrees, 3 degrees below normal. This was the 12th coolest August on record, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel at the Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • August: Drought Arrives in Illinois

    The statewide average precipitation was 2.06 inches, 1.6 inches below average and 56 percent of average. This was the 13th driest August on record since 1895, based on preliminary data, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.isws.illinois.edu).

  • August Provided Illinois with Extremes: Rainfall Records in North and Drought in South

    "Rainfall amounts in northeastern Illinois established this as the wettest August and wettest summer since regional records began in 1895. Rainfall for northeastern Illinois (including those counties from Boone to LaSalle and eastward) averaged 11.47 inches, 7.33 inches above normal, and beat the 1987 record of 11.02 inches. JuneAugust totals thus far in this area averaged 20.05 inches, 8.02 inches above normal, and beat the 1972 record of 19.26 inches. Northwestern Illinois received 8.45 inches in August, 4.05 inches above normal and the 5th wettest on record. Its JuneAugust total was 19.18 inches, 6.69 inches above normal and the 4th wettest on record," says State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.sws.uiuc.edu), a division of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

  • Champaign County confirms West Nile in samples

    Richard Lampman, an INHS entomologist, was interviewed by the Daily Illini about West Nile's appearance in Champaign County. Lampman said that this summer's hot, dry weather was perfect for the spread of mosquitoes.

  • Endangered mussels released in Illinois streams

    Endangered riffleshell and clubshell mussels collected in Pennsylvania earlier this summer have begun being relocated into Illinois Rivers. The mussels were placed, one by one into the gravel of their new stream. Each mussel has a rice sized transponder attached to its shell to identify it, enabling scientists to non-invasively monitor their progress in their new environment.

  • Researchers move endangered mussels to save them

  • Summer drought may dull fall color

  • U of I Student Chapter of the Wildlife Society, advised by Dr. Nohra Mateus-Pinilla, receives honor

    The University of Illinois Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society has been selected from over 20 universities as the 2007-2008 North Central Section Student Chapter of the year. The group is advised by INHS researcher Dr. Nohra Mateus-Pinilla, and the membership has several students associated with the Illinois Natural History Survey.

  • Soil Moisture Levels Remain Lower Than Normal in Illinois

    Soil moisture levels remained lower than normal, according to Jennie Atkins, Water and Atmospheric Resources Monitoring (WARM) Program Manager at the Prairie Research Institute, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • Soil Moisture Rises the Second Week of September

    Soil moisture levels rose across Illinois the second week of September as the state saw increased rainfall and cooler soil temperatures, according to Jennie Atkins, Water and Atmospheric Resources Monitoring (WARM) Program Manager at the Illinois State Water Survey, Prairie Research Institute, University of Illinois.

  • Illinois has dry soils in mid-September

    Illinois received 0.20 inches of rain for the month as of September 17, 1.59 inches below the long-term average. Dry weather in August and September has led to low soil moisture across Illinois.

  • INHS seeks principal research scientist and director

    The Illinois Natural History Survey seeks a principal research scientist who will develop and manage a research program, while also serving as director of INHS, providing leadership, direction, and overall administration for the development, coordination, and implementation of scientific research and service programs undertaken and provided by INHS.

  • Soybean Aphids have lowest impact in years

    INHS Entomologist David Voegtlin reported that this year's soybean aphid population had its lowest recorded impact, starting early but then disappearing. The low trap numbers so far this fall indicate that there may be lower numbers of eggs overwintering and a smaller flight of aphids in the spring.

  • Climatologist compares rainfall from Hurricane Harvey with Chicago storms

    What would happen if the rain from Hurricane Harvey that fell in Houston, Texas, hit Chicago? The result would be unlike any rainstorm that Chicago has ever seen, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel.

  • frost on branches

    State Climatologist looks at fall freeze data

    Due to significant planting delays across most of the Midwest this year, State Climatologist Trent Ford has heard many concerns about an early fall freeze and its potential effects on immature crops. Even in normal growing seasons, an early fall freeze can cause considerable impacts and yield losses for crops.

  • sun

    September heat, flooding, and drought

    September 2019 was tied for the fourth-warmest September for Illinois (state average temperatures back to 1895), and the warmest September since 1933. Precipitation varied tremendously from north to south across the state.

  • September: The Ninth Warmest on Record for Illinois

    September 2015 was the ninth warmest September on record for Illinois, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois. The statewide average temperature was 70.2 degrees, 4 degrees above average.

  • Leaves turning colors

    September weather was slightly cooler and wetter than average in Illinois

    The preliminary statewide average September temperature was 65.4 degrees, 0.8 degrees below the 30-year normal, and tied for the 45th coolest on record. Preliminary statewide average total precipitation for August was 3.39 inches, 0.16 inches more than the 30-year normal, and the 58th wettest on record.

  • INHS Scientists survey for Invasive Species

    The Illinois Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey (CAPS) program is a joint effort between several state and federal agencies to safeguard our nations food and environmental security from invasive pests that threaten our production and ecological systems. This program focuses on state surveys of harmful or economically significant exotic plant pests, diseases, and weeds that have eluded first-line of defense inspections.Illinois CAPS coordinator Kelly Estes discusses the current and upcoming surveys, including new techniques for monitoring.

  • Sixth Warmest September in Illinois

    September was the sixth warmest on record with statewide records going back to 1895. The statewide average temperature was 70.7 degrees, 4.5 degrees above normal, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • September, Warm and Dry across Illinois

    "A uniformly warm, dry September speeded fall harvest but further increased drought conditions in southern and central Illinois. Statewide rainfall was 1.71 inches, 1.48 inches below normal, and the 12th driest September since 1895. Temperatures in Illinois averaged 69.8 degrees, 3.6 degrees above normal, and the 15th warmest September on record," says State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.sws.uiuc.edu), a division of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

  • Two Tropical Systems Boost Illinois Rainfall in September

    The remains of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike boosted rainfall totals in Illinois for September. September statewide precipitation was 8.0 inches, 4.8 inches above normal and the third wettest September on record, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.sws.uiuc.edu).

  • September Brings Uneven Rainfall across State

    Based on preliminary data in Illinois, the statewide average rainfall for September was 2.4 inches, 0.8 inches below normal. This breaks the string of months with above normal precipitation that started in February 2009 and ended in August, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.isws.illinois.edu).

  • September Experienced Near Normal Temperatures

    Illinois experienced temperatures close to normal for September. The statewide average temperature was 66.8 degrees, just 0.6 degrees above normal, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.isws.illinois.edu).

  • September: A Cool Month in Illinois

    The statewide average temperature in Illinois was 63.2 degrees, 3 degrees below average, and the 13th coolest September on record for the state.  The coolest September was in 1918 with 59.3 degrees, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel at the Illinois State Water Survey.

  • September was Dry and Warm in Illinois

    Dry conditions were widespread across Illinois in September, and temperatures were above average for the first time in several months, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel at the Illinois State Water Survey, Prairie Research Institute, University of Illinois.

  • September Was Cool and Wet for Illinois

    September was 1.5 degrees cooler than average and 0.88 inches wetter than average for Illinois, according to Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel, Illinois State Water Survey, University of Illinois.

  • Gail Kampmeier helps Darwin Core to get ratified

    Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) announced the official ratification of Darwin Core as a TDWG standard. Darwin Core is one of four TDWG standards. Gail Kampmeier, INHS entomological researcher, served as the Review Manager for the Darwin Core project since February 2009. She fostered a peer and public review of the standard, including many discussions and updating of the draft standard. To learn more about the Darwin Core standard, please visit this website. Information on the Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) can be found here at this website.

  • Report describes water resources available in Middle Illinois River region

    A report on the water resources available in the Middle Illinois River water supply planning region is now available (ISWS Contract Report 2018-02). The results of the study are generally positive for the region, with abundant water available for most needs.

  • Illinois river otters still exposed to chemicals banned decades ago

  • Banned chemicals persist in river otters

    INHS researchers Samantha Carpenter and Nohra Mateus-Pinilla recently published a paper in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. Carpenter, Mateus-Pinilla, and University of Illinois Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory researchers, analyzed liver tissue samples from 23 river otters looking at 20 organohalogenated compounds used in agriculture and industry. Read stories from the Red Orbit and News Room America.

  • Unseasonably Dry And Warm Conditions Kick Off October In The Midwest

    It was an unseasonably dry and warm start to October across the Midwest.  On average, the Midwest experienced only 23 percent of its normal precipitation during the first 12 days of October, and temperatures were an average of 6 degrees above normal, according to Steve Hilberg at the Midwestern Regional Climate Center at the Illinois State Water Survey (ISWS).

  • Soil moisture improved in October in Illinois

    Soil moisture levels have improved throughout the state during the first half of October, according to Jennie Atkins, Water and Atmospheric Resources Monitoring (WARM) Program manager at University of Illinois’ Illinois State Water Survey.

  • Culling maintains low prevalence of Chronic Wasting Disease in deer populations

    INHS Wildlife Epidemiologist Nohra Mateus-Pinilla and postdoctoral researchers Mary Beth Manjerovic and Michelle Green conducted research on the effectiveness of culling deer to prevent the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). CWD is a 100% fatal disease in deer, likened to Mad Cow Disease. Their paper compared the culling strategy used in Illinois to the two different management strategies used in Wisconsin over a decade. Listen to the interview on Focus 580.

  • Targeted culling of deer controls disease with little effect on hunting

  • Tari Tweddale to give lecture at GIS Day

    Tari Tweddale, GIS/Remote Sensing Specialist and Illinois Gap Analysis Project Coordinator at the Illinois Natural History Survey, will present a seminar called, "GIS in Conservation Biology: Modeling Vertebrate Species Distribution in the Illinois GAP Analysis Project " at GIS Day at Illinois State University. The full line-up of presenters can be found in this Word document which will download to your computer.

  • Fungus that causes white nose syndrome is a survivor

    INHS Mycologist Andrew Miller and graduate student Daniel Raudabaugh recently published a paper on the fungus Pseudogymnoascus (Geomyces) destructans, which causes white nose syndrome in bats. In this first, in depth study of the basic biology of the fungus, the researchers found that P. destructans can survive on a wide variety of nutrient sources. White Nose Syndrome research at the Illinois Natural History Survey.

  • Native fauna gather at Emiquon

    After stocking native fishes in the restored Emiquon wetland just two years ago, the number of birds stopping there has dramatically increased. Dr. Joshua Stafford, Director of Illinois Natural History Survey's Forbes Biological Field Station, gave a report to the 2009 Governor's Conference on the Management of the Illinois River, where he said that the Coot numbers at the wetland went from 30,000 the first year to almost 60,000 the next. More information about the Emiquon wetland restoration can be found in the October 23, 2009 Peoria Journal Star article called "Experiment wildly successful" or the same article can be read at the NewsBank site.

  • The threat of invasive species

    INHS Affiliate and former director of the Illinois River Field Station was featured on CBS Sunday Morning in a story about invasive species. On the Asian Carp, Sass stated "We've seen explosive population growth, a population that has almost doubled every year. We're fairly confident we have the highest wild densities of Asian carp anywhere in the world." David Lodge of Notre Dame says studies estimate that invasive species cost the US Economy on the order of at least $120 billion annually. There are 30 federal agencies involved in the fight against invasive species, with about $1.5 billion spent annually. Education and prevention are key to warding off the invasive species.

  • Mike Ward to give program in Ringwood, Tuesday Nov. 2

    INHS Ornithologist Mike Ward will be presenting on his work studying the birds of Illinois and talk about the trends in bird populations they have found. The program will be at Lost Valley Visitor Center in Glacial Park Conservation Area, Rt 31 and Harts in Ringwood. The new book, Illinois Birds: A Century of Change, will be available soon!