Game Thief produced 194 court cases completed from 664 telephone calls. Also, 1,623 hunters donated more than 76,000 pounds of venison to the needy through the "Share the Harvest" program. Fifty-one processors participated in the program.
Conducted the Second Youth-Only Spring Turkey Season. During the special, two-day turkey season for resident youths age 15-years and younger, 16,882 participants harvested 3,102 birds, of which 70 percent were mature. There were no reported accidents.
Introduced a Youth-Only portion of the firearms deer hunting season. During the inaugural 2001 season, nearly 40,000 youth hunters went afield and took 6,451 deer. There were no reported accidents.
Managed Deer Hunt Program. The Department provided additional deer hunting opportunity through the Managed Deer Hunt Program. Overall, 5,849 hunters harvested 2,256 deer during 65 hunts at 33 locations.
The Natural Areas system was expanded by 1,184 acres and now contains 180 areas with 57,214 acres protecting the best examples of Missouri's terrestrial and aquatic natural communities.
Additional protection for bats. In cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Natural History Division staff assisted with the construction of cave gates to protect endangered bats at Rocheport and Great Spirit Caves, completing the largest two cave gating projects in the world.
Expanded cooperative partnerships. The Natural History Division led the Department effort to provide grants to conservation partners for 12 Wildlife Conservation and Restoration Program projects using federal funds available for the management of rare species and for outdoor recreation facilities.
Opened Rudolf Bennitt Lake to fishing. This new Department lake is located on the Rudolf Bennitt Conservation Area about 30 miles northwest of Columbia. Construction of the 48-acre lake was completed in January 1999. In spring 1999, the lake was stocked with fingerling largemouth bass, bluegill, redear sunfish, black crappie and channel catfish. Lake facilities include a disabled accessible boat ramp, fishing dock, privy and parking lot. A courtesy dock is also available for the use of boaters and anglers.
Improved access at Roaring River Trout Park: A cooperative project between the Department of Conservation and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources improved access facilities at this highly popular trout fishing destination. Workers removed the grouted rip-rap, built a new bridge, and built 900 feet of disabled-user-accessible walkway adjacent to the stream. Also installed were 1,250 square feet of "grass pavers" to reinforce a stream bank. Parking facilities were also