Sunday Outdoor Notes

The new Brushy Creek Lake map was loaded to the Iowa DNR’s website last Friday. Look for new lake maps of Mariposa, Volga, Fogle, Meyers Lake and Lake Meyer to be added soon. The habitat coordinates will be posted on a new separate map later this spring.

The February gate setting at Lake Darling was the culmination of years of effort to restore and redevelop the lake and its adjoining recreational area and facilities. That project will be the subject of a new 30-minute documentary tentatively titled, Darling is Back! by Samuel Koltinsky, executive producer with Marvo Entertainment Group LLC, and co-produced with Iowa Public Television. It is currently in production.

The Iowa Falcon River Trip is an event in Harpers Ferry celebrating the return of peregrine falcons to the cliffs overlooking the Mississippi River is scheduled for May 2-3, which is when falcons are most vocal as they defend their nesting territories from natural intruders. For more information, contact Pat Schlarbaum with the Iowa DNR at or 712-330-0526, or call Robert Vavra with Maiden Voyage River Tours at 563-586-2123 or

The Mines of Spain Recreation Area will feature a program on making maple syrup from sugar maple trees on March 23, at 1 p.m. at the E. B. Lyons Interpretive Center, 8991 Bellevue Heights south of Dubuque.  Scott Dykstra, park ranger at Maquoketa Caves State Park, has been making syrup for several years and will share his experiences, challenges and what has worked for him.  He will have equipment on hand and demonstrate their uses outdoors near the center.

The average ice out date for Clear Lake is April 1. The latest ice out was on April 28, 1952. Earliest was March 5, 1932.

It sounds like bluebirds are already in southern Iowa so grouse and turkey vultures will not be far behind. Spring really is coming.