Last week a couple came in very excited after their trip thru the driving tour at Peck Ranch Conservation Area. They had seen not only herds of deer, flocks of turkey, a smattering of elk but a black bear as well. On a visit from St. Louis, the staff from another nature center remarked on the wildlife they saw on their driving tour with a highlight of “live” skunks. I never tire of hearing the stories, wildlife IS exciting.
In a conversation with our State Forester Lisa Allen, she referred to Peck Ranch as Missouri’s Yellowstone. What an incredibly good description of Peck Ranch! More than 3 million people visit Yellowstone each year for the wild beauty and natural resources. Peck Ranch can offer a similar experience on a smaller scale. Designated a wildlife refuge to protect the last remaining herds of deer and turkey in Missouri, today Peck Ranch is so much more. The restoration efforts there have benefitted not only game species but non-game as well.
I think we can all agree on just how special Yellowstone National Park really is. I have been fortunate enough to visit there on several occasions and no matter what the season, the place is simply awe-inspiring. I know, what a cliché – but there is just no other way to describe it. What you may not realize is that there is a little slice of Yellowstone here in Missouri, Peck Ranch Conservation Area. The Missouri Department of Conservation makes discovering nature easy. You can download the map or stop by Twin Pines Conservation Education Center and we’ll provide a map and any recent reports of wildlife. No matter the season, Peck Ranch offers a glimpse of Missouri’s wild beauty. Still need some incentive? Check out the photos taken by our Naturalist Reta Barkley.