February 2018
Emerald Ash Borer
In the not so distant future (within the next 5-10 years), tiny, invasive, dime-sized insects of emerald hue will drastically alter the composition of our native forests. The Emerald Ash Borer will literally consume the vascular system of any and all Ash trees. In a way, slowly "murdering" the tree.

Let's get a little scientific. 
Photo Credit: Radio Canada International
Underneath the outer hard layer of bark, a tree has what is called a cambium layer.  The cambium layer serves multiple functions, one being the creation of xylem.  Xylem is the network of cells that brings water and nutrients up from the roots to the leaves and other parts of the tree.  The emerald ash borer, in its larval stage, eats these layers sufficiently interrupting the creation of xylem and the flow of water and nutrients.  The result?  One dead tree.  Or in this case, millions of dead ash trees (and fringe trees too).

Photo Credit: City of Lake Saint Louis 
So what are our options?  Don't move ash wood of any kind, living or chopped up for firewood.  Williamson County is under quarantine anyway, so that makes it against the law.  Be proactive about removing ash trees from potentially dangerous situations like right next to your house, or right next to your neighbor's car, because you will be responsible for that.  Inquire about municipal plans; see what your local officials are doing and if they offer incentives.  If you have the means, consider treating a select number of ash trees.  Treatment options are currently limited and must be done for the life of the ash tree, but the hope is that with further research, more viable options will be discovered. 
To learn more about this little bit of a bug, visit   http://emeraldashborer.info/

Not sure what an ash tree looks like?  https://treedoctor.msu.edu/ash/ashtree_id

Volunteer Days
We are gearing up for the spring season at Owl's Hill because it's about to get busy!  And of course we couldn't do what we do without your help. No experience necessary, just bring your work gloves, boots and all weather outdoor gear.

Haircut Hill Trail Project
Lipscomb Freshman class clear the new route on Haircut Hill
Friday Feb. 16; 8am - 11am
Saturday Feb. 17 8am - 11am
Tuesday March 6; 8am - 11am
Saturday March 10; 7:30am - 10am

Getting up this popular destination hill at Owl's Hill has always been a challenging walk for volunteers and visitors as well as being a design challenge for creating trails to the top, so we've flagged a route that will ease the grade to climb and soften the descent's impact on the knees.  We've already had a few young volunteers from some local colleges and high schools who have had success in clearing brush from most of the flagged route. Kristin Hopkins, Conservation Specialist is looking for some volunteers for satisfying, productive trail building who want to spend some "step-back- and-admire- your-work" time on the slopes of Haircut Hill creating this trail, while learning trail building skills and techniques from some experienced trail builders who have done this many times before. 

The finished product will be a trail of gentle grade leading up from Haircut Hill's south slope and around its east slope before attaining the top from the north. Most of Haircut Hill is surrounded by side slopes that require this 18" wide trail tread to be cut carefully into the soil using tools and techniques that reduce future trail maintenance and reduce or eliminate silt-producing erosion from foot traffic and water.

We need at least 4-5 volunteers for each of the work days coming up in February and March.  Pick one or all, any help is appreciated. Please email Kristin Hopkins if you are able to join us.

250K Tree Day
Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018

We have 100 trees to plant and we need your help planting them!  Come by with gloves, shovels, sturdy shoes, and water.  We'll keep planting until they're all in the ground - with a good group no more than 2 or 3 hours.  This day is presented in partnership with our friends at Tennessee Environmental Council and is a statewide initiative.
Please email Kristin Hopkins if you are able to join us.
Weed Wrangle
Saturday, March 3, 2018
9:00am - 12:00pm  

Weed Wrangle is back! We will be pulling invasive plants along our creek.  This is a statewide event.  Registration is through Hands on Nashville. Here's a  link to our event page with registration.
Interested in other ways to volunteer at Owl's Hill? Visit  http://www.owlshill.org/support/volunteer

 Spring Break Camp 2018
March 26 - 30, 2018    9am - 3pm

At Owl's Hill Nature Sanctuary we want to share an amazing world of wonder with your child.  Here, nature is the guide - and it leads us to crayfish in the creek, meeting our owls and hiking in the woods.

Camp Includes:
water bottle and hot dog lunch on Friday. 

Ages 5 to 12.
Registration is limited to 20 campers. (Daily minimum of 5 campers required).

$270 for full week; $65 daily rate

Extended care:
3 - 5pm daily; $40 for the full week; $10 daily rate

Summer Camp 2018
Summer camp provides rewarding opportunities f or campers to learn about Tennessee wildlife and the environment in a natural setting through games, hikes, exploration, crafts and live animal programs.

Camp is limited in size so each child receives individual attention. Registration includes a camp shirt, water bottle and daily snack. Campers bring a lunch Monday-Thursday. All camps include Friday kosher hotdog lunch, ice cream desert and water games.

Nature Ranger Camp - Ages 5 - 11
Session I: June 4 - 8
Session II: June 18 - 22
Session III: July 16 - 20

Outdoor Explorer Camp - Ages 5 - 11
Session I: June 11 - 15
Session II: July 9 - 13
Session III: July 23 - 27

Screech Owl Camp (1/2 Day) - Ages 5 - 7
June 25 - 29 (9:00am - 1:00pm

Animal Caretakers (1/2 Day)
Ages 12 - 16
June 25 - 29 (2:00pm - 4:30pm)

Junior Naturalists - Ages 12 - 16
July 2 & 3 

Knee-High Naturalists: February 2018

Tuesday, February 6, 2018
10:00am - 11:30am
Cost:  $12 one adult + one child/ $7 add'l person
Walkup: $15 one adult + one child

We'll get an up-close look at animals that can live in our own backyard. Meet some animal friends that call Owl's Hill home.       

Tuesday, February 13, 2018
10:00am - 11:30am
Cost: $12 one adult + one child/ $7  add'l person
Walkup: $15 one adult + one child

Did you know baby animals have special names? Let's learn what babies animal eat and how they grow. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018
10:00am - 11:30am
Cost: $12 one adult + one child/ $7  add'l person
Walkup: $15 one adult + one child

Owls, ostriches, penguins and pigeons are all birds.  Let's flock together to learn more about birds. Children will learn about the different parts of a bird.


Tuesday, February 27, 2018
10:00am - 11:30am
Cost: $12 one adult + one child/ $7 add'l person
Walkup: $15 one adult + one child

Did you know that you can find fossils in Tennessee? Explore Owl's Hill to find fossils and take home a special rock they discovered.

Free Hike Day - All Ages
Saturday, February 10, 2018
10:00am - 1:00pm

Come out to Owl's Hill for a free hike! Join one of our staff members or volunteers on a guided hike through Owl's Hill. This is a great opportunity for families, individuals, and small groups to come enjoy the trails of Owl's Hill and get some exercise. Three types of hikes are available depending on your preference. Last hike leaves at 11:00am

Ultimate S'mores 2018
Saturday, February 17, 2018
10:00am - 1:00pm
Cost: $12 / person

Owl's Hill is holding its 4th Annual Ultimate S'mores Hike. After getting your heart pumping hiking the wooded trails, guests will retreat to the pavilion for hot chocolate and gourmet s'mores. Create delicious s'mores from a variety of chocolates, graham crackers, marshmallows and toppings. Fun for the whole family. Children two and under are free. 
Advanced Basket Weaving - Adults Only
Saturday, February 10, 2018
9:00am - 1:00pm
$55 / person (includes weaving supplies)

Join us as we engage in the traditional craft of basket weaving with expert weavers Ellen Knisley and Janet Lanier. We will be weaving a "Gathering" basket. 

Thank You Supporters
We continue to experience successes in 2018 and it's all thanks to all of our wonderful supporters. Join us in expressing our sincere gratitude to all the people who enable  Owl's Hill Nature Sanctuary to continue to grow and thrive.

Thank You January Donors
Beth Boord and Henry Ambrose
Jennifer and Timothy Bent
Ms. Mary Buckner
Alexis Buglio
Tommy Sue and Butch Garrett
Sue and Mike Gay
Christina Glynn
Mrs. Henry Hooker
Seth and Victoria Robertson
Mrs. Paloma Cain Rollings
Charles and Barbara Smith
Susan Tan
Mrs. Bet Wise
Mr. and Mrs. L. Glenn Worley

Corporate Gifts
Otis Entertainment Corporation

In Honor of Finley Rand
Christopher Rand

In Honor of Dr. Charles Smith
David and Sandy Martin

In Honor of Karen and Rogers
Mrs. Elizabeth Crockett

In Honor of Margaret Cameron
Dr. Margaret Smith

In Memory of Bennie Batson
Nancy and George Garden

In Memory of Mary R. Stratton
Ms. Saundra Stratton and Ms. Mary Carroll

In Memory of Shawna Lea Hickerson Smith
Diane and Michael Gower
Jean and Wayne Qualls
Linda Ramsey