About Us

The Jo Daviess Conservation Foundation (JDCF), a land trust in Jo Daviess County, IL, was founded in 1993 by a small group of local individuals who wanted to somehow maintain the open space of a piece of property near Galena that had recently been put up for sale.  The group’s purpose was to permanently protect what many deemed ‘the Gateway to Galena’ from development, ensuring that the pristine view of the City from Hwy 20 along Horseshoe Mound would be preserved for future generations to enjoy.  That goal recently became a reality when JDCF finally purchased the 100 acres known as Galena Gateway Park in 2010.  During the almost 18 year struggle to reach this goal, the Foundation grew from a group of volunteers meeting in one another’s basements to an organization with an office and full-time staff that is dedicated to land conservation in all of Jo Daviess County.

Upcoming Events

Fall Forest Walk

September 30 @ 1:00 pm - 3:30 pm

With fall on the way, the appearance of trees changes significantly and identifying them can be tricky – unless you know your bark, berries, and  nuts. Join us to celebrate the change of season with a Fall Forest Walk at Schurmeier Teaching Forest. This free event will be led by expert staff and volunteers from […] Read More

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Creatures of the Night: Owls & Bats

October 21 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Learn about some of our nocturnal friends, owls and bats. This program, geared towards a middle school grade level, introduces the life cycle of the owl and its food and habitat. It also identifies the characteristics that make the owl a perfect predator and member of the raptor family. Participants will get to dissect an […] Read More

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The Return of Large Predators to the Midwest

November 11 @ 12:30 pm - 4:30 pm

Our keynote speaker will be Adrian Wydeven, nationally-renowned timber wolf expert, based at the Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute at Northland College, in Ashland, WI. For more than 50 years, there were NO sightings of wolves in Illinois, but with declining habitat north of us, wolves have again been sighted since 2002, more in Jo Daviess […] Read More

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Owl Prowl

December 2 @ 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Join us for an evening owl-prowl hike at Casper Bluff.  This year, we will be joined by the Northern Illinois Raptor Rehab and Education Center who will bring along a few of their feathered friends for an educational program and meet and greet with live owls before we head out on the trails. There will be […] Read More

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