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Explore Missouri's original landscapes

Missouri's natural areas represent some of the best — and last — examples of our state's original landscape. Here are places where you can still see the rare plants, animals, and geological features that pre-settlement native Americans knew well or that explorers such as Lewis and Clark observed and recorded. Explore remnant prairies, old-growth forests and woodlands, rare wetlands, caves, and many other kinds of native habitat.

Plan a visit

Use the information in this section to plan a visit to a natural area. Whether your interest is nature study, birding, hiking, fishing, hunting, or photography, you'll find a designated Missouri natural area to enjoy your favorite low-impact outdoor recreational activity.

Map of Natural Areas in Missouri


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Title County Designation Datesort icon
Bryant Creek Douglas 12/18/1973
Mule Hollow Glade Carter 12/18/1973
Rock Spring Bluff Barry 12/18/1973
Mill Mountain Shannon 12/18/1973
Hickory Canyons Ste. Genevieve 03/22/1974
Bur-Reed Slough Pike 09/25/1974
Oval Lake Pike 09/25/1974
Cash Swamp Dunklin 04/16/1975
Little Osage Prairie Vernon 08/26/1975
Pawhuska Prairie Barton 08/26/1975
Niawathe Prairie Dade 08/26/1975
Lichen Glade St. Clair 10/22/1975
Wah-Sha-She Prairie Jasper 10/22/1975
Lily Pond Reynolds 12/15/1975
Holly Ridge Stoddard 02/13/1976
Mount Vernon Prairie Lawrence 04/16/1976
La Petite Gemme Prairie Polk 06/21/1977
Current River Shannon 07/21/1977
Pioneer Shannon 07/21/1977
Vancill Hollow Cape Girardeau 10/21/1977
Shortened URL
http://mdc.mo.gov/node/2453