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LEC plans nature hikes, programs

Posted On: March 14th

Discover Volusia County’s native plants and wildlife during outdoor hikes and indoor programs at Lyonia Environmental Center (LEC), 2150 Eustace Ave., Deltona. 

Programs will begin in the center’s classroom. Reservations are requested; call 386-789-7207, ext. 21028.     

April’s programs include:

  • Earth Day calendar workshop: 2:30 to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 2.  Earth Day, celebrated every year on April 22, promotes environmental awareness and calls for the protection of the planet. Create a countdown calendar from recycled materials that will remind you to do something positive for the planet each day of the month. 
  • Sea, touch and explore: 2 to 2:30 p.m. Thursday, April 6. Staff will share fun facts about sea stars, sea urchins and sea cucumbers. Afterward, attendees can meet the center’s saltwater animal ambassadors.  
  • Radical reptiles hike: 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday, April 8. Lyonia Preserve is home to a variety of species of reptiles, including gopher tortoises. These long-lived gentle reptiles are keystone species because they dig burrows that provide shelter to hundreds of other species. Staff will lead an exploratory hike into the scrub to look for reptiles in their natural habitats. Advance registration is required for this program. 
  • Raptors: 2 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, April 15. Birds of prey are among the most sophisticated birds on Earth; their eyesight, hearing and other senses are honed to help them catch live prey. Reinier Munguia, president of the Lake Region Audubon Society and an EagleWatch volunteer coordinator, will describe the physical and behavioral adaptations used by raptors. He will provide facts about falcons, eagles, owls and kites.   
  • Earth Day fun: 2 to 3 p.m. Thursday, April 20. Help the LEC promote environmental awareness. Create recycled pop-up flowers, upcycled containers and pledges. This program is recommended for children ages 5 and up.
  • Popcorn and a movie: 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 23. Every year, 100 million monarch butterflies set off on an incredible journey across North America, flying thousands of miles to reach a tiny area high in the mountains of Mexico. In “The Incredible Journey of the Butterflies,” a NOVA film crew flies along with the monarchs, visiting their spectacular homes and the dangers they encounter along the way. Following the film, participants can make a monarch butterfly craft from recycled materials and learn how to help the beautiful species survive.
  • Tiny trekkers: 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday, April 29. Children ages 2 to 5 can listen to the book “Spring is Here,” take a short hike, and make a take-home craft.
  • The amazing horseshoe crab: 2 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, April 29. Horseshoe crabs are amazingly adaptable as they make their yearly migration to different beaches. Many species – including mollusks, sponges and crustaceans – depend on horseshoe crabs for their survival. Learn about this important creature and its connection to the ancient beach of Lyonia Preserve.
  • Scrub strolls: 9 to 10 a.m. every Monday and Friday except April 14. Environmental specialists lead these exploratory hikes through Lyonia Preserve. 

If you will be walking through Lyonia Preserve, wear closed-toe shoes, bring water, and be prepared to hike on sugar-sand trails.

Lyonia Environmental Center offers insights into Volusia County’s fragile ecosystems through hands-on displays and educational programs. It’s part of the Deltona Regional Library complex at 2150 Eustace Ave., Deltona. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free.

Learn what’s happening at the LEC at www.lyoniapreserve.com.