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updated: 2/12/2018 7:11 PM

Discover ways to help protect endangered butterflies, bees and dragonflies at Mayslake program Feb. 20

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Submitted by DuPage Monarch Project

Discover how to help protect endangered butterflies, bees and dragonflies at "Beyond Monarchs: Preserving Endangered Butterflies, Bees and Dragonflies" at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 20, at Mayslake Peabody Estate, 1717 W. 31st St. in Oak Brook.

The free program is co-hosted by Forest Preserve District of DuPage County and DuPage Monarch Project. Registration is not required.

Forest Preserve District ecologist Andres Ortega will discuss conservation efforts in local forest preserves for Baltimore checkerspot butterflies, Hine's emerald dragonflies and rusty-patched bumblebees. The program also will provide practical strategies for homeowners and communities to help protect butterflies and other pollinators.

The district is closely monitoring a colony of Baltimore checkerspot butterflies and Hine's emerald dragonflies along the Des Plaines River and leading a captive-rearing- and-release program for Hine's emerald dragonflies at its Urban Stream Research Center at Blackwell Forest Preserve near Warrenville. The district is also monitoring populations of rusty-patched bumblebees in DuPage forest preserves and applies its findings to land management decisions and policies to increase and improve habitat for these endangered insects.

"Pollinators are being adversely affected, and it is our responsibility to protect and restore those populations. Their decline affects us all," said Forest Preserve District of DuPage County President Joe Cantore.

"We are focusing on these three species in an effort to protect and improve the habitat that they and many other native insects rely on," said Forest Preserve District Commissioner Jeff Redick, District 2.

The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County has been connecting people to nature for more than 100 years. More than 4 million people visit its 60 forest preserves, 145 miles of trails, five education centers and scores of programs each year. For information, call (630) 933-7200 or visit www.dupageforest.org, where you can also link to the district's e-newsletter, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.

DuPage Monarch Project's monarch conservation initiatives include advocating for increasing the amount of monarch habitat and encouraging municipalities and park districts to sign monarch resolutions. Information about the Project can be found at dupagemonarchs.com.

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