Healthy Forests

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Our Glorious Forests

Rudolph Bennitt CA

  • Size: 3,575 acres
  • Location: Junction of Howard, Randolph and Boonie Counties
  • Importance: Wildlife habitat, research, education and multiple recreation opportunities, including disabled-accessible facilities
  • Things to do: Picnic, watch wildlife, bird, hike, bike, ride horses, hunt, target practice at the shooting range, fish, camp, collect firewood (with permit)
  • Online information: visit our online atlas and search “Bennitt”
  • For more information contact the Area Manager: 573-884-6861

The forest at Rudolf Bennitt Conservation Area in central Missouri defines the phrase “multiple use.” The Department of Conservation manages it for everything from natural communities and research to recreation and hunting opportunities. Ten miles of trail meander through upland oaks, across bottomlands and by a 60-acre lake. Use the trails to hike, bike or ride your horse. From the trail or roads, you may notice forest and habitat management, as well as signs explaining these techniques. Take note of the area’s woodland and savanna restoration, which are designed to increase natural diversity. Many hunters use the forest at Bennitt CA to hunt deer, turkey and squirrels, and firewood permits are issued to the public as well. Whether your interest is recreation, natural resource use or diverse natural communities, the forest in Rudolph Bennitt CA has something for you.

Professional Foresters

Help protect forest health and increase revenue.

Your timber stand took at least 75 years to grow. A poorly conducted harvest could set it back by decades. A Department of Conservation or private consulting forester can help ensure your forest’s long-term health and productivity and can help you increase harvest revenue while taking into account tax and estate planning considerations.

For more information about getting professional help with your timber harvest, call your local Department office or explore the links listed below.

Rebuilding After the Storm

Forest products important to ice storm recovery efforts.

Last winter’s ice storms showed many Missourians just how much we depend on forest products, especially in the form of utility poles.

Mary Scruggs of the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives reported that 15 utility systems lost 5,225 poles statewide. Electric companies large and small rushed to replace the poles, and many replacements came from private and federal pine forests in the Ozarks. Tony Parks of Current River Poles in Licking says that his supply group harvests about 50,000 utility poles a year from Missouri’s pine forests. Of these, about 25 percent return to the state when local utility companies buy them. Parks emphasized that, aside from providing basic services, pine forests managed for utility poles as well as overall forest health are good business.

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