“These programs benefit our partners and the local communities by providing an extremely cost-effective way of providing citizens with more quality fishing and boating opportunities,” says Marlyn Miller, the Department’s fisheries programs supervisor.
The Department has cooperative agreements with 117 partners to manage 168 public lakes, 42 stream access areas, four lake access areas and nine aquatic resource education ponds. At 78 of these lakes and streams, MDC developed or improved motorboat access thanks to the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Program, which funds up to 75 percent of total project costs.
The Department strives to provide high-quality fishing opportunities for all Missourians, including those living in urban areas. MDC’s Urban Fishing Program stocked more than 50 ponds in St. Louis, Kansas City, St. Joseph, Sedalia and Springfield with trout, channel catfish and sunfish.
“Department surveys have found that the majority of the anglers at these lakes fish nowhere else,” Miller says. “MDC is providing fishing opportunities to people who may not otherwise venture out of the city to fish.”
Conservation Area Stewardship Continues
Missouri’s rich history of supporting conservation efforts now benefits people and wildlife throughout the state. “The majority of Missourians feel the Department is doing a good or excellent job of providing services to them, their families, the community and the state,” says David Thorne, MDC policy supervisor. “According to recent surveys, 91 percent of Missourians agree that it is important for outdoor places to be protected, even if you don’t plan to visit the area. And 75 percent of Missourians agree that land should be acquired for fish, forest and wildlife conservation.”
MDC is committed to ensuring that Missouri’s public land stewardship continues to balance the needs of people and wildlife. “By focusing on partnerships and being adaptable, we can continue to build upon Missouri’s quality land conservation history and boldly advance the Department’s land conservation and stewardship,” Ripperger says.
Together with Missourians, MDC will continue a land-conservation heritage that will protect key natural resources, continue to improve access and opportunities for people to enjoy these areas, continue to support our outdoor heritage, and provide educational opportunities for future generations of Missourians.
Conservation Areas for Nature and You
MDC’s public land stewardship goals balance the needs of wildlife and people. “The Department has planned and implemented one of the best long-term public land strategies in the nation,” says MDC Deputy Director Tim Ripperger.