The University of Illinois is expanding the Southern Illinois Conservation Workshop to a free, weeklong, virtual webinar series Sept. 21-25 from 2 to 4 p.m. daily.

Pre-registration is required and available online here.

The event will feature professionals with expertise in different facets of landowner conservation. Landowners and land managers across the state will gain opportunities to learn, ask questions and make contacts.

The schedule offers a range of topics:

  • Sept. 21, 2 p.m., Mary McCorvie, Shawnee National Forest heritage program manager, and Heather Carey, the forest’s archaeologist, will discuss managing cultural resources on private property.
  • Sept. 21, 3 p.m., Bob Weck, Southwestern Illinois College biology professor, will provide an overview of karst and cave ecosystems in the state and offer strategies for landowners and managers. Weck and his wife, Nancy, own and manage Stemler Cave Nature Preserve in St. Clair County.
  • Sept. 22, 2 p.m., Eliana Brown, Illinois Indiana Sea Grant and University of Illinois Extension, will report on the U of I campus’ 10,000-square-foot Red Oak Rain Garden and lessons for rain garden projects.
  • Sept. 22, 3 p.m., David Webber, Natural Resources Conservation Service area engineer, will present structural alternatives for streambank and streambed restoration in southern Illinois.
  • Sept. 23, 2 p.m., Kevin Rohling, U of I Extension forestry research technician at Dixon Springs Agricultural Center, will discuss native shrubs’ benefits for wildlife.
  • Sept. 23, 3 p.m., Austin Little, U of I Extension horticulture educator, will offer ways to identify commonplace native and non-native plants and their landscape uses.
  • Sept. 24, 2 p.m., Nick Seaton with River to River Cooperative Weed Management Area will discuss herbicide sprayers and best practices.
  • Sept. 24, 3 p.m., Tricia Bethke, Morton Arboretum Illinois forest pest outreach coordinator, will offer strategies to identify potential forest pest threats and how to keep plants healthy.
  • Sept. 25, 2 p.m., Peggy Doty, U of I Extension energy and environmental stewardship educator, will share how wildlife nest boxes can supplement habitat.
  • Sept. 25, 3 p.m., Joy O'Keefe, U of I assistant professor, will report Indiana bat data and bat population changes after white-nose syndrome disease.

Participants needing reasonable accommodations should email Brenda Hileman early enough to allow time to meet their request. Direct workshop questions to Erin Garrett at or Chris Evans at