Discover Nature (Missouri Department of Conservation)

Missouri Department of Conservation

Missouri’s freshwater mussels live all around us, sitting quietly in streambeds, often unnoticed despite their bright pearls and colorful names. Discover Nature this week, as the pocketbook mussel begins breeding.


Missouri Department of Conservation

Among the members of the Squirrel Family living in Missouri, you’ll most likely see Eastern gray and fox squirrels.


Missouri Department of Conservation

If you’ve stepped out to enjoy the night air lately, you’ve likely noticed a loud newcomer to the chorus of night sounds.  This week on Discover Nature, we’ll shine some light on the Northern True Katydid.


Missouri Department of Conservation

This week on Discover Nature, take a trip to a stream or pond near you, and observe the colorful dance of mating dragonflies across the surface of the water. 


Missouri Department of Conservation

As we head into the middle of summer, keep an eye out in the woods for ripening blackberries.

Missouri Department of Conservation

Spend much time near a Missouri waterbody in summer, and chances are you’ll spot see reptiles galore including water snakes basking on a sunny day.

Discover Nature: Softshell Turtles

Jun 21, 2016
Missouri Department of Conservation

Take a canoe out on a local pond or stream this week, and you’ll likely encounter Spiny softshell turtles.


Discover Nature: American Bullfrogs

Jun 15, 2016
Missouri Department of Conservation

The deep, sonorous call of Missouri’s largest frog is distinct. This week on Discover Nature, we discover Missouri's official state amphibian, the American bullfrog. 


Missouri Department of Conservation

If you’ve spent any time out in nature in the last week you may have noticed a well-protected reddish fruit starting to ripen now. This week on Discover Nature, we search for wild raspberries.

Missouri Department of Conservation

Spring storms bring the threat of damaging wind, hail, flooding, and erosion, but they also restore life to the landscape providing nutrients to plants and soil, and drinking-water for wildlife. This week, on Discover Nature, we celebrate May as American Wetlands Month.

Jim Rathert / Missouri Department of Conservation

What do fawnfoot, monkey face and fat pocketbook all have in common? They are a few of the fun names of Missouri’s 69 freshwater mussel species.

Missouri Department of Conservation

So much in the natural world is ephemeral especially in the spring. This week on Discover Nature we look and listen for buzzing signs of the season.


Missouri Department of Conservation

As you hit the road this spring, keep an eye out for Missouri residents at special risk this time of year:  this week on Discover Nature, we hit the brakes for turtles on the move.

Discover Nature: The Eastern striped skunk

May 11, 2016
Missouri Department of Conservation

In Missouri, striped skunks are relatively common.  Harder to find, are Eastern spotted skunks. These smaller skunks have black fur with white stripes, and spots.

Spotted skunks inhabit open prairies, brushy areas and cultivated land, favoring cover under a brushy field border, fencerow or vegetated gully between their dens and foraging areas. 

They mate in late winter and give birth from April to July.

Skunks are good mousers and help control insects, thus they are an asset around farms… As scavengers, skunks help clean up the woods.

Discover Nature: Wild Turkeys

May 9, 2016
Missouri Department of Conservation

This week on Discover Nature, listen for wild turkeys gobbling in Missouri woods and grasslands.


Missouri Department of Conservation

Wildflowers and warm weather signify the arrival of spring in Missouri and one of the state’s largest, heaviest wild mammals enjoys the season as much as we do. This week on Discover Nature, we recognize National Bear Awareness Month.


Missouri Department of Conservation

There are almost 1,000 different kinds of bats. Bats eat mostly insects, but when insects are not available during winter, bats in Missouri survive our colder months by hibernating or migrating to warmer places. 

Missouri Department of Conservation

Spring weather settling-in across Missouri triggers breeding activities for many frogs.  This week on Discover Nature, we’ll learn about the Boreal Chorus Frog. 

Listen in prairies, and along the grassy edges of marshes and farm ponds, for these small gray or tan frogs – three-quarters to one-and-a-half inches long – with three wide stripes down the back.  They begin breeding in late February, with their raspy, vibrating call peaking in mid-April – a sound similar to running a fingernail over the teeth of a pocket comb. 

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