Busse Woods is the Cook County Forest Preserve District's second-largest bounded site. (The Palos Hills site is larger.) Busse is situated right between Woodfield Mall and O'Hare Airport, places not noted for their natural beauty.
But the wildlife seems able to ignore the land and air traffic for the most part. Busse has big shallow lagoons created by the Salt Creek Flood Control Project in the late 1970s. This has made it a hit with wading birds, not to mention ducks and geese.
In addition to birds, Busse has the usual urban wildlife, such as racoons, skunks, possums, squirrels, and rabbits. The county maintains a herd of elk in a large fenced area, an apparent tribute to nearby Elk Grove Village. But actual deer (no elk, no moose) manage to live free in the unfenced parts.
Busse's lagoons are also ideal for beaver. You can see gnawed stumps at several places not too far off the bike trail. And the beaver lodges themselves can be found if you venture out in a canoe or kayak. But the actual beavers are pretty shy.
About the only major form of urban wildlife I haven't personally observed in Busse is the coyote. But they're probably out there. I have seen a coyote nosing around the garbage cans at Ravinia, and there are frequent media reports of coyotes as road kill or coyotes eating someone's poodle. A recent Sun Times article (8/6/1997) described a protest in Riverwoods over a coyote being shot to death by a trapper.
Which brings us to the down side of the critters. People may move to a place called "Deerfield", but they can still get pretty upset when actual deer show up and eat their expensive landscaping. Corporations may build ponds for scenic and practical purposes, but then find that geese like these ponds. But the geese may not like people, and people certainly don't like all the goose droppings. Some companies now rent swans with clipped wings. The swans chase away the geese.
And back in Schaumburg, some of those beaver from Busse Woods found their way into corporate headquarter land, and started chewing on the corporate stick tree landscaping. A trapper was hired to "relocate" the beavers. (I'm surprised they weren't "downsized" instead.)
Moral to the story? Sorry, I don't have one. The Great Deer Debate has raged for a least a decade in many Chicago suburbs, producing very vocal kill-the-vermin and must-save-Bambi camps. Both side have horror stories and dubious statistics to bolster their claims. A few efforts to "cull" (aka "downsize w. extreme prejudice") deer have been approved, with little apparent effect.
In addition to deer, there is now also a Great Mosquito Debate, at least in areas served by the North Shore Mosquito Abatement District. In response to public pressure, the District declared a moratorium on "adulticiding" (spraying to kill adult mosquitos) in the fall of 1996 (after mosquito season). In the summer of 1997 (lots of mosquitos) the District moved to restrict public input at its meetings, and voted to resume spraying on a limited basis.
And there are already signs that a Great Coyote Debate is brewing....
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