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Find Hunter Education and Bowhunter Education classes near you.

Date: Wednesday, March 16, 2022 8:00 am - Wednesday, August 31, 2022 8:00 am
Location: St. Louis Regional Office/Busch Memorial CA
Are you part of a school, camp, scout, or other community group in the St. Louis Region that would like a presentation about Missouri fish, forest, and wildlife? We have Naturalist staff and volunteers that can come to you with programs, or programs are available at our sites. Summer programs are offered June through August. To request a program brochure and application, please e-mail Marissa Ginger at Marissa.Ginger@mdc.mo.gov.
Date: Friday, April 1, 2022 8:00 am - Friday, September 2, 2022 8:00 am
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

It’s time to break out the point-and-shoot, dust off the DSLR, or polish up the cell phone camera.

Our theme for this year is “A Year in Color” and we’re inviting you to join our celebrations as we host a photography contest.

Submit your photo(s) that best represent color and nature in Missouri for the chance to have your photo displayed in the nature center during the month of October. All photos must be taken between January 1 and September 1, 2022 and submitted prior to 5:00pm Thursday, September 15, 2022.

Submissions will be judged by MDC staff and volunteers within the following categories:

Children up to 12 years old

Children 13-17 years old

Adults 18+

Professional photographers

Age categories are based on the person’s age at the time the photo was taken, and professional photographers are defined as someone consistently compensated for their photography work.

First and second place photos from each category, as well as honorable mentions, will be mounted and displayed as part of our temporary art exhibit during October. Each photo will include an identification card with the photographer’s name and the location and date the photo was taken. Photos will not be used by the Department beyond the specified exhibit and will be returned to the photographer at the end of the exhibit. Photos can be submitted via email, USB drive, or other data storage device and should be no less than 2100x2100 pixels. Photos submitted via email should be sent to CapeNC@mdc.mo.gov titled “Photo contest + last name + category”.

Please contact the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center if you have any questions.

Date: Monday, May 2, 2022 8:00 am - Tuesday, May 31, 2022 4:00 pm
Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center
An exhibit of photography by Robert Charity will be on display for the month of May at Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center. Robert loves exploring the Missouri Ozarks region and the exhibit contains many landscape and nature images taken during these trips. On particular emphasis will be the beautiful Ozarks rivers and streams on which he is often found with his kayak and camera. He most enjoys capturing misty sunrise images which will be well represented in the exhibit. Roberts’s work has been published in Backpacker, County, Modern Times, and Digital Photo magazines.
Date: Tuesday, May 3, 2022 2:00 pm - Tuesday, May 31, 2022 3:00 pm
Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center
Discover what’s for dinner at Burr Oak Woods as the captive amphibians, fish and turtles enjoy their feast every Tuesday and Friday. The snakes are fed on the second and fourth Wednesday (May 11 & 25).
Registration period: May 2 - May 28
Date: Wednesday, May 4, 2022 1:30 pm - Sunday, May 29, 2022 2:30 pm
Location: Lake City Shooting Range
Shotgun shooting is fun and exciting. Whether you want to learn about the shotgun fundamentals from the very beginning or improve your skills on the skeet, trap or 5-stand ranges, this One-on-One Shotgun Instruction course is for you! Our instructors will help you get started and work with you on the basics to prepare you for moving on to each discipline. THIS CLASS IS BY APPOINTMENT ONLY! Please call 816-249-3194 to make an appointment. You must provide your own shotgun and two (2) full boxes of shells. The shells must be # 7.5, 8, or 9 shot. We look forward to seeing you soon!
Registration period: May 2 - May 28
Date: Wednesday, May 4, 2022 1:30 pm - Sunday, May 29, 2022 3:00 pm
Location: Lake City Shooting Range
The Lake City Shooting Range wants to help you sight in your rifle...for FREE! The instructors will help you ready to hunt, fine-tune your scope or improve on your shooting skills. If you are preparing for a hunt, bring the rifle and ammunition you plan to use during the hunt. THIS CLASS IS BY APPOINTMENT ONLY! Please call 816-249-3194 to make an appointment.
Registration period: April 11 - May 17
Date: Tuesday, May 17, 2022 6:00 pm - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 8:00 pm
Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center
Registration required (adults) Did you know that two thirds of all water in the Kansas City metropolitan area drains into the Blue River? Spend an evening learning about the Blue River watershed and how our actions can have either a positive or negative impact. Participants will evaluate the water quality of the river by collecting macro-invertebrates, enjoy a stream corridor hike and discover the wildlife that calls the Blue River home. Additional program details will be provided to those who register. If accommodations are needed, please e-mail the instructor after registering and at least one week prior to the program.
Registration period: May 1 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 7:30 am - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 9:30 am
Location: Runge Conservation Nature Center
Registration period: May 2 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 8:00 am - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 5:00 pm
Location: Runge Conservation Nature Center

Grab your hiking stick and join a guided hike of Cole Creek Trail in Mark Twain National Forest (Laclede County); 5 miles-moderate. Meet at the Runge Nature Center or the trailhead. Some transportation is provided, but carpooling may be necessary. Hike leaders will contact participants before the hike to give directions if needed. Wear sturdy shoes, dress for the weather, bring a water bottle, and pack a lunch/snack. Registration required. Ages 18+

Registration period: May 1 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 10:00 am - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 11:00 am
Location: Runge Conservation Nature Center
Camping might sound in-tents but a Little Acorn’s camping trip is sure to be a good time! Join us as we pack a bag and head out to the campsite to learn more about this fun outdoor activity! Registration required. Ages 3-6 years.
Registration period: March 18 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 1:00 pm - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 3:00 pm
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Spring wildflowers are starting to bloom. Let’s take a walk at Seventy-six Conservation Area and not only look at their beauty but learn their names and all about them. Total distance hiked will be about one mile and will include an out and back section of the trail that is relatively easy. You can ride with us from the nature center to the park. This program was developed for adults, but children may accompany adults and learn the wildflowers too. If you are participating in the Cape Nature Center's "Year of Color", you will earn a green bead.

Registration period: March 18 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 1:30 pm - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 2:30 pm
Location: Seventy-Six Conservation Area
Spring wildflowers are starting to bloom. Let’s take a walk at Seventy-six Conservation Area and not only look at their beauty but learn their names and all about them. Total distance hiked will be about one mile and will include an out and back section of the trail that is relatively easy. You can meet us at the trailhead off State Rd D at the conservation area. This program was developed for adults, but children may accompany adults and learn the wildflowers too. If you are participating in the Cape Nature Center's "Year of Color", you will earn a green plant bead.
Registration period: April 1 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 2:30 pm - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 3:00 pm
Location: Online only
This session will focus on grilling fish. We will discuss different methods, techniques, and ingredients to grill or bake fish.
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 5:00 pm - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 7:00 pm
Location: Online only
This program will focus on how to catch Crappie, and how to clean/cook them after you catch them! Registration is required with a valid email. Program link will be sent to registered email the day of the program.
Registration period: April 14 - May 18
Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 7:00 pm - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 8:00 pm
Location: Online only

May is National Bear Aware Month! Join a Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center Naturalist and a Conservation Educator to learn about Missouri’s bear population, management, hunting, and how to avoid bear encounters.

This is the virtual portion. Please register each participant individually. You will receive a Webex link and instructions the night prior to the program and again by 5pm of the day of the program.
Registration period: March 18 - May 19
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 10:00 am - Thursday, May 19, 2022 10:45 am
Location: Online only
Along our large river floodplains, a special habitat is performing critical and beneficial roles for the surrounding environment. Discover these important roles that Missouri’s wetland habitats play and how they help improve our lives. We will take a virtual dive into the wetlands of southeast Missouri and meet the fascinating creatures and plants that call it home. If you are participating in Cape Nature Center’s “A Year in Color” this program earns a red wildlife bead that can be picked up at the Cape Nature Center.
Registration period: April 11 - May 19
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 12:00 pm - Thursday, May 19, 2022 1:00 pm
Location: Online only
Registration required by visiting https://deeproots.org/native-plants-at-noon/ (adults) Tour the native landscape at MDC's Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center. Guided by native landscape specialists Alix Daniel and Cydney Ross, this program features a live look at native plants of interest throughout the year plus landscaping tips and tricks. This program is a partnership with Deep Roots.
Registration period: March 18 - May 19
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 2:00 pm - Thursday, May 19, 2022 3:30 pm
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center
Along our large river floodplains, a special habitat is performing critical and beneficial roles for the surrounding environment. Discover these important roles that Missouri’s wetland habitats play and how they help improve our lives. We will grab our nets and explore Wood Duck Swamp in search of the creatures and plants that call it home. If you are participating in Cape Nature Center’s “A Year in Color” this program earns a blue aquatics bead.
Registration period: May 6 - May 19
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 4:00 pm - Thursday, May 19, 2022 6:30 pm
Location: Twin Pines Conservation Education Center

Five Common Missouri Fish - Their Anatomy, Habitat, and Life Cycle. Fishing with Lures and Fishing Regulations. You must take Discover Nature - Fishing Lesson 1 and 2 before you can take this class.

Additional Information:

Lesson 3: Five Common Missouri Fish-Their Anatomy, Habitat, and Life Cycle combines instruction with hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families basic biological concepts and functions specific to largemouth bass, bluegill, hybrid sunfish, channel catfish and rainbow trout. Participants will learn the different components of fish anatomy and their functions. In addition, participants will learn about various types of fish habitat and aquatic food webs. Lesson 4: Fishing with Lures and Fishing Regulations combines instruction with hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families how to properly select a fishing lure based on desired fish species, weather and water conditions. In addition, participants will learn how to identify and understand fishing regulations.

Participants are limited to anglers ages 7 and up. We encourage the entire family to participate. Fishing equipment, instructors/coaches and bait/lures will be provided. Adults who do not wish to fish must accompany their child(ren) at all times. Participants must have completed Lessons 1 and 2 prior to attending Lessons 3 & 4. Participants do NOT need a fishing permit to fish during this program. For additional information or questions contact LuAnn Conway at (573) 325-1381 ext. 6031.
Registration period: March 5 - May 18
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 6:00 pm - Thursday, May 19, 2022 8:00 pm
Location: J. Thad Ray Memorial Wildlife Area

Come learn how to shoot archery! Archery is a safe and fun sport for everyone. All levels of abilities welcome but these events are geared for novices, 8-year-old to adults. Class Size is limited to provide for one-on-one instruction.

All equipment will be supplied. Please show up in sturdy, closed toe shoes. We will meet at the Static Range on J. Thad Ray. Park at the parking lot and follow the mowed trail around to the left.

Archery classes are offered Thursday evenings May 5th, 12th, and 19th. From 6 pm to 8 pm. Sign up for one or all.

Registration period: April 13 - May 19
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 6:00 pm - Thursday, May 19, 2022 7:30 pm
Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center
Walk the trails with Bo Brown, local wilderness expert and author of Foraging the Ozarks. He will guide you to the bounty of edible wild foods and healthful herbs found in the Ozarks. Dress for the weather and plan to hike about a mile. Ages 15-adult.
Registration period: April 8 - May 19
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2022 6:00 pm - Thursday, May 19, 2022 7:00 pm
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

This class is a 12 month program that will meet once a month all year long. You will learn simple, but beautiful embroidery techniques as we explore some of the most stunning and unique Winged Things found in the beautiful landscapes of Missouri.

By signing up, you are committing to attend all twelve of the monthly sessions so that you will be able to complete all 15 blocks for an entire quilt.

Classes will be held on the third Thursday of each month at 6:00 pm at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center.

You will need to have your own embroidery hoop and needle. We will have light boards and Frixion pens available for tracing the patterns.

For those participating in the Cape Nature Center’s “A Year in Color,” this program will earn a purple arts bead.

Registration period: February 25 - May 19
Date: Friday, May 20, 2022 11:00 am - Friday, May 20, 2022 12:30 pm
Location: Forest Park Hatchery
This cane pole fishing lesson will include all of the basics including proper fish handling. This program meets at the Educational Fishing Lakes and Hatchery in Forest Park. We will provide instruction, poles and bait. Participants under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Participants 16 and over who plan to fish will need a valid fishing license which can be purchased here https://mdc-web.s3licensing.com/ .
Registration period: February 25 - May 19
Date: Friday, May 20, 2022 1:00 pm - Friday, May 20, 2022 2:30 pm
Location: Forest Park Hatchery

Beginning Archery

As these are in-person programs MDC asks all guests to observe social distancing guidelines and maintain at least 6 feet from others for the safety of participants and staff. Bringing and wearing face coverings is encouraged when indoors, or any time visitors are unable to maintain at least 6 feet from others. Local ordinances requiring face masks will be observed where applicable.
Registration period: February 25 - May 19
Date: Friday, May 20, 2022 3:00 pm - Friday, May 20, 2022 4:30 pm
Location: Forest Park Hatchery
This cane pole fishing lesson will include all of the basics including proper fish handling. This program meets at the Educational Fishing Lakes and Hatchery in Forest Park. We will provide instruction, poles and bait. Participants under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Participants 16 and over who plan to fish will need a valid fishing license which can be purchased here https://mdc-web.s3licensing.com/ .