Upcoming Events

Check out our education programs, hikes, and volunteer projects!


Spring Wildflower Walks

Spring is here and so are the wildflowers. Western Wildlife Corridor is offering a series of free guided wildflower walks at our preserves which have some of the most spectacular native wildflowers in the region. You could see Cut-Leaved Toothwort, Sessile and Drooping Trillium, Wild Ginger, Woodland Poppy, Blue-Eyed Mary, Greek Valerian, Dutchman’s Breeches, Wild Hyacinth, Miami Mist, Fernleaf Phacelia, and many more. In addition to wildflowers, our native trees and shrubs will be leafing out among an abundance of wildlife. Please dress for the weather, we will meet light rain or shine. The trails are of moderate difficulty and can be slippery when wet. RSVP is required due to limited space.

  • Saturday, April 13, 10:00 am — Bender Mountain Nature Preserve.
    • Leader: Denis Conover SOLD OUT
  • Saturday, April 13, 10:00 am — Delshire Nature Preserve.
  • Wednesday, April 17, 2:00 pm — Buckeye Trace Nature Preserve.
  • Sunday, April 21, 10:00 am — Bender Mountain Nature Preserve.
  • Saturday, April 27, 10:00 am — Kirby Nature Preserve.

Environmental Education Events

Providing education to foster connections with nature is an important part of our mission. Each year hundreds of participants discover, learn, and explore the outdoors at one of our many environmental education events. Events are free, family friendly, open to the public, and lead by experts in our local environment. Space is limited so please RSVP to let us know how many guests to expect.


Lighting up the Shadows: An Illuminating Look at Fireflies with Matthew Speights Thursday, May 9 — 7:00 p.m. @ Kirby Nature Center RSVP as space is limited.

Catching fireflies on warm, summer nights was a favorite part of my childhood. I learned that male fireflies flashed and glowed to find a mate, but I never knew there were hundreds of kinds of fireflies, including ones that were poisonous, venomous pack hunters, mimics, or even cannibals!

Join me, Matthew Speights, to discover the hidden world of fireflies and the amazing diversity of their species, behaviors, and lifestyles. We’ll discover the strategies fireflies use to survive snow, avoid predators like bats, or share information as they flash with yellow, green, and even orange lights. In the process, we’ll learn why fireflies are disappearing, what their environmental needs are, and what we can do to help them survive.

Bonus: Get a preview of the Spring Treetop Flasher, the first glowing firefly of Spring, that we will hike to see tomorrow night.. Meet at Kirby Nature Preserve, 2 East Main Street in Addyston, Ohio. Free, RSVP as space is limited.


Spring Treetop Flasher Firefly Hike After Dark Friday, May 10 — 7:45 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. @ Bender Mountain Nature Preserve Free, RSVP required.

Matthew Speights will lead a nighttime hike on Bender Mountain to see the first glowing firefly species of Spring. Hikers will need a red headlamp/flashlight to preserve their night vision, as well as sturdy shoes/boots and a hiking stick to hike steep trails in the dark (fireflies will not come out until approximately 10:00 pm). Free, RSVP required.


Bird Banding with Adam McCosham Saturday, May 18 — 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 am, @ Kirby Nature Preserve Free, RSVP required.

No matter if you are learning to ID birds, or want to learn how they nest or how they migrate, one way to learn more is to observe a bird banding session. Bird banding is the practice of safely applying a band or tag to part of the bird, usually the leg, for data collection and individual identification. Banding birds allows researchers to learn the migration patterns, life span, breeding territory, and feeding areas of different bird species. Identifying these patterns and behaviors within bird populations plays a critical role in designing and implementing conservation programs for different species of birds.

But not just anyone can place bands on birds; you must have the required permits and approvals. Banding offers an intimate glimpse into the behavior of birds. Join us for this interactive outdoor program for a chance to watch bander Adam McCosham in action, while getting a chance to see various bird species up close and personal. You will learn how to identify birds in the hand as well as see how bird banders age, weigh and sex the birds as well as how they affix the band.

Adam is currently a Conservation and Parks Manager with the Great Parks of Hamilton County. With a degree in Natural Resource Management, Adam has spent the last four years training to band birds and loves passing on his knowledge of natural history to others. Free, RSVP required.


Bird Walk with Kathi Hutton Sunday, May 26, 8:00 am to 11:00 am. at Kirby Nature Preserve Free, RSVP required.

The focus will be on songbirds: nesting songbirds and those returning to SW Ohio to nest, as well as any other species we encounter! Beginning Birders are welcome! Dress for the weather; binoculars/camera, sturdy shoes, and water recommended. Depending on birds seen, the hike should last 2-3 hours but you may leave the hike at any time. Meet at Kirby Nature Preserve, 2 East Main Street in Addyston, Ohio. Cost: Free. RSVP required.

Kathi Hutton began birding in the winter of 1993-94 when she identified her first White-crowned Sparrow. In the thirty years since, she has attained a Life List of 514 species worldwide, 433 species in North America, and 324 species in Ohio. When not birding, Kathi enjoys spending time with and training her dogs, growing orchids, gardening with native plants, and Reds baseball. Kathi is an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist. Her interests go beyond birding to include wildflowers, butterflies, and the interconnection of the natural world. Her joy is to share her passion for nature with others.


Blue Ghost Firefly Hike After Dark with Matthew Speights
Friday, June 28, 8:30 to 11:00 pm. at Bender Mountain Nature Preserve
Free, RSVP required.

Matthew Speights will lead a nighttime hike on Bender Mountain to see firefly species like the Little Gray Firefly, Chinese Lantern Firefly, and Blue Ghost Firefly. Hikers will need a red headlamp/flashlight to preserve their night vision, as well as sturdy shoes/boots and a hiking stick to hike steep trails in the dark (fireflies will not come out until approximately 10:00 p.m.). A limited number of hikers will be taken. Cost is free, but registration is required.


Landscaping with Native Plants and Plant Sale, Scott Peak
Tuesday, July 16, 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm. at Kirby Nature Center
FREE, RSVP Required.

Scott Peak will give a presentation on landscaping with native plants. Using native plants is one way to attract beautiful birds and butterflies to your yard or conservation project. This will be an informative program for the beginning gardener as well as the experienced native plant gardener. Join us to learn why native plants are beneficial, and how they feed, shelter and support our local wildlife.
Scott retired from Great Parks as manager of the Shaker Trace Seed Nursery as well as managing and planning restoration projects in the parks. He is the owner of Wildscapes, a native plant nursery. There will be some native plants for sale after the presentation.


On the Wing: Butterfly Walk with Glenn Crisler Saturday, August 10 — 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., at Kirby Nature Center, Free, RSVP required.

Admired the world over, butterflies are treasured for their beauty and grace. This walk will focus on finding and identifying butterflies on the various plants found at Kirby Nature Center. You will learn how to best attract them to your yard too. Dr. Glenn Crisler II, PhD., is an amateur lepidopterist who hails from Brookhaven, Mississippi. He moved to Cincinnati, OH after completing his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry in 2019.

In addition to being an Analytical Chemist, Glenn is also passionate about nature and lends his expertise with others by leading outdoor naturalist hikes and delivering lectures for various state parks and societies. Some of Glenn’s work is published in the journal News of the Lepidopterist’s Society, a journal dedicated to the study of Lepidoptera. In addition, Glenn is an excellent photographer in the field as you can see by the photo of the Tiger Swallowtail nectaring on Aster


Volunteer Events

Volunteer projects are so much fun and one of the easiest ways you can give back to the Western Wildlife Corridor! If you’ve never attended a volunteer event with us before, we encourage you to join us this Spring. We need help cutting invasive species, installing new trail signs, and repairing trails. We provide the tools and no special skills are required. Please RSVP to let us know that you are coming.

Saturday May 4th 9:30 a.m. at Whitetail Woods, Please RSVP

Join us for a fun volunteer event to help restore Whitetail Woods Nature Preserve. Help remove invasive species like honeysuckle, garlic mustard, and winter creeper so that native plants and animals can prosper. We will meet light rain or shine. Please be prepared for the weather and wear clothes that can get dirty and closed-toed shoes. We will provide the tools and equipment but you are welcome to bring your own.  


Saturday May 11th 9:30 am. at Kirby Nature Preserve, Please RSVP

Join us for a fun volunteer event to help restore Kirby Nature Preserve. Help remove invasive species like honeysuckle, garlic mustard, and winter creeper so that native plants and animals can prosper. We will meet light rain or shine. Please be prepared for the weather and wear clothes that can get dirty and closed-toed shoes. We will provide the tools and equipment but you are welcome to bring your own.  


Saturday May 18th 9:30 am. at Buckeye Trace, Please RSVP

Join us for a fun volunteer event to help restore the Buckeye Trace Preserve. Help remove invasive species like honeysuckle, garlic mustard, and winter creeper so that native plants and animals can prosper. We will meet light rain or shine. Please be prepared for the weather and wear clothes that can get dirty and closed-toed shoes. We will provide the tools and equipment but you are welcome to bring your own.  


Sunday May 19th 2:00 p.m. at Bender Mountain, Please RSVP

Join us for a fun volunteer event to help restore Bender Mountain. Help install benches and improve trails. We will meet light rain or shine. Please be prepared for the weather and wear clothes that can get dirty and closed-toed shoes. We will provide the tools and equipment but you are welcome to bring your own.  


Our Events Committee Needs You!
Part of our mission is to “provide education to foster connections with nature.” The Events Committee selects and plans many of the non-work programs and hikes we offer each year, especially at our Kirby Nature Center. This is your chance to help pick some of the fun topics and interesting speakers, and bring them to our community.

The Events Committee mostly corresponds by email but does hold three meetings each year. Meetings follow an agenda and calendar, which are emailed to the committee in advance. We discuss recently-held events, upcoming scheduled events, and ideas for the future. The meetings start at 7:00 pm and generally last an hour or so. If you are looking for volunteer hours, we are approved by many organizations, such as Master Gardeners and Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalists, that will allow volunteer work to count towards your hours.

If you are interested, please email staff@westernwildlifecorridor.org. Thank you!

Can’t join us for an event? Our preserves are open to the public and are to be enjoyed by all. A few rules: please stay on trails, removing plants is prohibited, and preserves close at dusk. Information about each of the preserves can be found here.


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