Calkins Animal Adoptions

Calkins Nature Area was donated to the Ellsworth Community College Board of Trustees in 1981. Homer Calkins, the donor and executive director of the Hardin County Conservation Board dedicated his life to helping sick and injured wildlife. Many of the buildings you see on our grounds were Calkins' originals. In these buildings, Homer cared for hawks, owls, pelicans, exotic birds and pheasants, baby deer, raccoons, and more. The buildings have been renovated since Homer's passing in 1996, but many of the original structures still stand. We strive to carry on Homer's legacy by helping and housing rehabiliated and injured wildlife at the nature center. We even have one of Homer's original birds, Grumpy, a great ...Read More

Calkins Museum NOW OPEN!!!

We are excited to announce the opening of our brand new interpretive museum at Calkins Nature Area! There are two halves to the museum. The first half houses a Native American artifact collection donated by Jeff Ulch of Clemmons, Iowa. This collection has over 7,000 pieces, some of which are "once in a lieftime finds," for an artifact hunter. You have to see it to believe the sheer enormity of the collection. It took nearly 5 years to take the collection from Jeff's basement and turn it into the completed product you see below. Jeff has taken very good care of the collection and has even detailed where he found most of the artifacts. His attention to detail makes it one of the most historically complete ...Read More

Scheduling Education Programs for the School Year

With the school year rapidly approaching, interpretive programs will soon fill the majority of our education calendar. If you are a teacher, community group leader, or a member of a community organization, we recommend taking advantage of our free interpretive programs. Our programs are presented in your respective classrooms or meeting places. In other words, we come to you! All of our staff members are seasoned biologists who have many years of field related experience working with plants, invasive species, and wildlife. Often times, we discuss topics based around wildlife, conservation, the environment, and Iowa's natural history.Read More