Fiscal Year 2012–2013 Annual Report Summary
initiated the development of a Comprehensive Conservation Strategy (CCS) in January 2012 to further improve habitat conservation for fish and wildlife. The Department evaluated the priority conservation opportunities across the state and selected eight places to potentially increase our investments in staff time, budget, and conservation partner energy. The CCS may be the first in the nation to fully integrate plans for forests, watersheds, and fisheries, and all other wildlife into a common framework for action.
Manage Lands In Public Trust
Public Input on Area Plans
Conservation area management plans document strategies for natural resource management and public use on conservation areas. In fiscal year 2013, staff drafted 56 plans that cover 140 conservation areas and accesses. These draft plans will be available for a public comment period during fiscal year 2014. Public review of area plans will offer a new level of transparency to Missourians, with the opportunity for anyone to comment about the management of a specific conservation area.
The Department maintained active management on Department lands — especially for quail and grassland birds and forest and woodland habitat. In fiscal year 2013, Department staff conducted habitat management on more than 182,000 acres of public land.
State Forest Nursery
The Department’s state forest nursery annually grows and distributes about 3 million seedlings of more than 60 species. The seedlings are planted on both public and private lands statewide. The nursery filled more than 10,700 orders involving more than 26,600 packages of seedlings, with a customer satisfaction rate of more than 99 percent. An open house and tour of the 100-acre nursery hosted more than 400 people in spring 2013.
Burr Oak Woods 30th Anniversary
The Department hosted events in October 2012 to mark the 30th anniversary of Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center in Blue Springs. Burr Oak was the Department’s first nature center. It hosts 80,000 visitors annually. The nature center features exhibits and interpretive programs, picnic areas, pavilions, five hiking trails, viewing/photo blind, and viewing decks and bridges.
Shooting Range Attains 4-Star Rating
The National Shooting Sports Foundation gave the Jay Henges Shooting Range near High Hill its enviable 4-star rating. Range improvements made in the past two years include creating a 15-target, 3-D, walk through archery range, and renovating the rifle and pistol range with state-of-the-art safety features and the capacity to capture and recycle all projectiles fired.