All About Richland

Bald Eagle Visibility Is Exceptional In Winter, Including In Richland County

29 Jan , 2023  

By 1812Blockhouse, ODNR

Bald eagle nesting activity increases in the winter months, providing an excellent opportunity to watch these majestic raptors hunt, improve nests, and establish territory, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. Ohio’s bald eagles begin courtship and pair bonding in January, and that combined with an absence of vegetation makes this one of the best times to view them.

Ohio’s bald eagle population has increased dramatically in recent years, with an estimated 824 nesting pairs statewide in 2022. Look for eagles near their preferred aquatic habitats such as rivers, wetlands, and frozen lakes, or occasionally sitting in open fields. An eagle’s large size, dark-colored plumage, and impressive wingspan are easy to spot against snow and ice.

“The recent success of Ohio’s bald eagles is owed in a big way to improvements in the state’s water quality and habitat availability,” said Division of Wildlife Chief Kendra Wecker. “Expanding wildlife areas and Governor DeWine’s H2Ohio program to restore wetlands provides eagles with additional space to nest and raise their young. The bald eagle’s recovery is an example of how wildlife and habitats benefit when the state, conservation partners, and individuals work together.”

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All About Richland

Planting Callery Pear Trees Now Forbidden In Ohio

22 Jan , 2023  

By 1812Blockhouse; ODNR

If you had plans to plant pear trees in the near future, you had best heed the latest news from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

If you already have Callery pear trees on your property, however, you can control or remove them. There is at least one Richland County property owner who may have that challenge; there may well be more.

According to ODNR, it is now illegal to sell, grow, or plant Callery pear (also known as Bradford pear) in Ohio because of its invasive qualities and likelihood to cause economic or environmental harm.  There is no requirement for the removal of existing plants, but the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry encourages control and removal to benefit native forest ecosystems.

This action has been phased in over some time.

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All About Richland

There’s Still To To Express Your Opinion On Ohio’s Outdoor Opportunities

15 Jan , 2023  

Special to 1812Blockhouse

People have been spending a lot of time outdoors in Ohio, whether it’s kayaking, camping, hiking, fishing, or swimming.

There are just two weeks left to let the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) know what you want to see more of in the great outdoors. The statewide survey to contribute to Ohio’s State Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP) is available through the end of this month.

Feedback from the survey will help determine outdoor recreation priorities of Ohioans. The survey results will be included in the five-year SCORP, which provides information on recreation trends and serves as a reference document for state officials distributing federal and state grants for public park facilities around the state.

To have your opinion heard, take the survey here. The survey closes January 31.

Source: ODNR

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History & Tourism

ODNR Highlights The Accomplishments Of 2022

5 Jan , 2023  

By 1812Blockhouse; Ohio Department of Natural Resources

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) is celebrating a year of accomplishments, milestones, and investments in outdoor recreation. ODNR, keeping true to its mission, spent 2022 making sure Ohio’s public lands and resources were protected and improved for the use of all who step foot on them.

“We really kicked it into high gear this year, celebrating conservation and improving everything from state parks to wildlife areas to wetlands,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz.  “I am proud of our team that works year-round to make each visitor experience better, upgrade equipment and trails, and pave the way for future generations to enjoy these lands.”

Area expansions and improvements included Mount Gilead State Park in north central Ohio, just a ten minute drive from southwestern Richland County, and at Mohican State Park.

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All About Richland

Stay Healthy This Winter: Take A Hike

30 Dec , 2022  

By 1812Blockhouse

As it has for the last several years, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources is inviting Ohioans and visitors to experience the beauty of Ohio’s State Parks by taking a guided stroll.

Ohio is a beautiful place to explore, especially in the winter. From the rare birds wintering along the Lake Erie shores, to the snow-covered bridge at Mohican State Park, to the frozen waterfalls In the Hocking Hills, there are majestic winter landscapes all across our beautiful state.

ODNR staff  have dozens of winter hikes planned around our wonderful and picturesque state in our nature preserves and state parks.

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All About Richland

Rollout Of Body Cameras For ODNR Officers

21 Dec , 2022  

Special to 1812Blockhouse

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Director Mary Mertz recently announced that ODNR has begun outfitting all natural resources and wildlife officers with body cameras.

“Body cameras are becoming an increasingly important piece of technology in all areas of law enforcement,” said Governor DeWine. “These new cameras have the ability to protect natural resources and wildlife officers while also offering transparency to the public.”

ODNR officers are certified peace officers who are required to enforce all laws and statutes of the state within their jurisdictions.

Governor DeWine directed ODNR to begin the process toward outfitting their officers with body cameras last year. Following that directive, ODNR pursued approval from the Ohio Controlling Board to use $3.5 million in federal funding from the Federal Coronavirus Relief Fund under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to purchase the new cameras. 

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All About Richland

Registration Open For Run For The (Happy Little) Trees

10 Dec , 2022  

Special to 1812Blockhouse

Do you love happy little trees as much as Bob Ross did? Inspired by the artist’s love of the outdoors, Ohio is now part of the “Run for the Trees/Happy Little (Virtual) 5K” to support tree planting and forest protection efforts at Ohio State Parks.

“Bob Ross inspired people with every brush stroke painting those happy little trees, and we think Ohioans can do the same with every stride of this 5K,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz said.  “We want people to get out, stretch their legs, and help us keep those trees growing at our state parks!”

Registration is now open for the race, which was started by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.  Ohio is among the first states outside the Michigan border to benefit from the race proceeds.

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All About Richland

Natural Resources Officer Honored For Rescue Near Mohican State Park

5 Dec , 2022  

Special to 1812Blockhouse

 Recognized for their quick thinking and fast action, 12 Natural Resources Officers (NRO) were recently honored by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) for their life-saving efforts over the past year. ODNR’s officers are often the first to arrive on the scene of an emergency at Ohio’s state parks, forests, nature preserves, and waterways. 

Included was one who serves at Mohican State Park.

“Our Natural Resources Officers are dedicated to keeping all Ohioans safe,” said ODNR Director Mary Mertz. “I am grateful to these courageous men and women for their life-saving actions and their ongoing efforts to not only protect visitors, but to improve their experience each and every day.”

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All About Richland

Deer Hunting Season Begins Soon

15 Nov , 2022  

By 1808Delaware, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

A favorite fall tradition for many Ohioans includes a trip to pursue deer during the annual gun hunting seasons, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. The first of those is the youth deer gun hunting season on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 19-20. The weeklong gun season open to all hunters kicks off Monday, Nov. 28 and continues until Sunday, Dec. 4. The deer gun weekend is Dec. 17-18.

“Hunting deer in Ohio is a popular and cherished activity that has been enjoyed for generations,” said Division of Wildlife Chief Kendra Wecker. “Ohio’s gun seasons are an excellent opportunity to harvest venison with friends and family, creating a fun fall tradition.”

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All About Richland

What Would You Like To Experience In Ohio’s Outdoors?

8 Nov , 2022  

Special to 1812Blockhouse

Whether it’s kayaking, camping, hiking, fishing, or swimming, people have been spending a lot of time outdoors in Ohio. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) wants Ohioans to weigh in on new or expanded recreational opportunities through a statewide survey to contribute to Ohio’s State Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP).

“Ohio is home to some of the best recreation in the country, any time of year,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz said. “Our goal is to make each visitor experience the very best it can be and to do that we need to know what Ohioans want to see and what we should target for future improvement.”

Feedback from the survey will help determine outdoor recreation priorities of Ohioans. The survey results will be included in the five-year SCORP, which provides information on recreation trends and serves as a reference document for state officials distributing federal and state grants for public park facilities around the state.

The last SCORP update was finalized in 2018 and can be read here. To have your opinion heard take the survey here.

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