Crow’s Nest: Welcome (back) Cody Hudgens!
By Daniel Barringer, Preserve Manager.
He’s already been here for two months, and I’m just now getting around to writing about how happy we are to welcome Cody Hudgens as Crow’s Nest Preserve’s Assistant Manager. We’ve had a busy spring so far, cleaning up from extensive ash tree removals and catching up on many deferred projects. Among them were replacing older bluebird boxes with new ones on updated predator-proof posts.
A California native, Cody has worked his way up through the ranks at Natural Lands, starting as our long-term intern in 2014, performing a combination of land stewardship and environmental education. He became our go-to guy for low ropes course-type activities at camp, knots, and cooperative games, as well as an amazing proficiency in digging holes. (The latter he listed on his resume—not that he needed to, we already knew that!)
Following his internship Cody was hired as a Stewardship Assistant, one of the more difficult roles at Natural Lands (multiple supervisors with varied management styles and required travel to several preserves). But this job also offers some of the best experience (see previous parentheses) and involves training on a broad variety of equipment. He continued occasionally to help out with our education programs at Crow’s Nest. Below, he showed off the “Harry Potter” office-under-the stairs at our visitor center in 2016 (actually a storage closet; today he has an actual office, not that he gets to spend much time there).
Then Cody moved to a position at our Stoneleigh: A Natural Garden, doing horticulture, managing plant records, and organizing volunteers. Now he’s returned to Crow’s Nest with more experience and has already been engaging volunteers in the visitor center gardens and held a Force of Nature workday this spring to spruce up our kids’ play area. We’re thrilled to have Cody back! If you see him out on the preserve, please say hello.