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Kids encouraged to 'Plug into Nature'

Kids encouraged to 'Plug into Nature'

(WXIA) -- The Georgia Department of Natural Resources has brought back its Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest for 2014.

This year's theme is Plug into Nature, emphasizing the importance of experiencing wildlife and plants firsthand.

All Georgia students in grades kindergarten through 5 are invited to enter the contest. The top 12 winners' posters will be displayed on the DNR's Flickr site and at the Go Fish Education Center in Perry during the first two weeks in May.

Contest entries are due Apr. 16. Three winners will be picked in four categories (kindergarten, grades 1-2, grades 3-4, grade 5).

Visit georgiawildlife.com for more information about the contest.

Learn how to attract birds to your backyard

Learn how to attract birds to your backyard

ATLANTA -- Pike Nurseries is holding a free class to help homeowners learn ways to draw birds to their backyards.

According to Pike Nurseries, roughly 350 species of birds live in Georgia. The birding class will teach participants the types of seed that are best for attracting birds, the three essentials needed to draw birds and how to provide for birds during the cold winter months.

The Attracting Birds to Your Backyard class will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 19 at all metro Atlanta Pike Nurseries locations. Visit pikenursery.com to find your closest location.

Pike Nurseries will also offer 20 percent off all birding accessories from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

Bears might soon raise families in Atlanta suburbs

Bears might soon raise families in Atlanta suburbs

ATLANTA -- Wildlife biologists say black bears like the one that rambled through backyards in Atlanta's northern suburbs in August could soon be permanent residents in north Fulton, Gwinnett and Cherokee counties, having cubs and raising families.

State officials say bears could be reproducing well inside the Atlanta metro area within the next decade, which would mean a new way of life for suburban residents not accustomed to living in bear country.

JOHNS CREEK: Black bear caught on camera outside home

JOHNS CREEK: Black bear caught on camera outside home

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. -- As an avid hunter and wildlife lover, John McCormick has a  mounted this time lapse, motion sensor camera in his front yard on Mount Rushmore Drive.

He checks it every couple of weeks and often captures shots of deer.  Sometimes he gets a picture of a racoon or a fox, but never has he seen what he noticed in the most recent download to his computer.

A black bear.  A sizable black bear.

"I've got to say when I saw the first picture I did a double take," said McCormick.

In a series of five photos taken several minutes apart the bear seems unfazed by the camera.  It wanders around sniffing out its surroundings and even lies down at one point.

"He looks downright comfortable," joked McCormick.

Not as funny is the realization McCormick had when he looked closer at the time stamp and date of the bear photos.

New K-9 joins Johns Creek Police

New K-9 joins Johns Creek Police

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. -- A furry new officer has joined the Johns Creek Police Department.

Leo, a two-year-old German Shepherd, was sworn into office July 11. He joins the department's two other K-9 officers, Nico and Dano.

"Leo is a full-service patrol dog. He is trained and certified in narcotics, detection, tracking and apprehension," said Leo's handler, Ofc. Will Goins. "He's fitting right in here in Georgia."

Born to a long line of police dogs in The Netherlands, Leo began his early police dog training in his home country before coming to Georgia for weeks of intensive training with Goins.

Prior to joining Johns Creek in 2010, Goins was a member of the Kennesaw State University Police Department for three years. He is currently pursuing a B.S.

Bring on the birds with Pike Nurseries

Bring on the birds with Pike Nurseries

DULUTH, Ga. -- Feeling caged in with a boring landscape?

Break free with expert advice from Pike Nurseries.

On Saturday, June 4, fledgling birdwatchers and experienced gardeners alike are invited to flock to any Metro Atlanta Pike Nurseries location for a free class on attracting birds to yards.

From 10 a.m.

BEST SPOTS: Atlanta Skyline Views

BEST SPOTS: Atlanta Skyline Views

ATLANTA, Ga. -- For this week’s installment of Best Spots, we've compiled a list of the best lookout points in the metro-area to view the Atlanta skyline.

The prominent Atlanta Skyline is marked with midrise and high-rise buildings similar to those one would find in a larger city like New York City or Los Angeles. The Bank of America Plaza formally known as the NationsBank Building is one of the most prominent buildings in the Atlanta skyline and is the 42nd tallest building in the world, is the largest building in the Western Hemisphere outside of Chicago and New York and is Georgia’s tallest building.

Other buildings included in the Atlanta Skyline are the SunTrust Plaza, One Atlantic Center, 191 Peachtree Tower, the Georgia-Pacific Tower, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Two Peachtree Building and the Promenade II.