Get Outside

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From Missouri Conservationist: July 2019

Ways to connect with nature.

Berry Picking

Blackberries are ripening. Gather your family and friends and plan a trip to the nearest blackberry patch. Better hurry! Birds and wildlife also enjoy these juicy, sweet wild fruits.

What’s That? Up in the Trees!

Fall webworm caterpillars (Hyphantria cunea) begin building webs in trees. Walnut, hickory, pecan, persimmon, sweetgum, ash, maple, oak, poplar, redbud, and willow are most common targets. Though unsightly, these webs do not damage trees. Fall webworms have dozens of natural enemies to reduce populations. To assist these natural enemies, rip open easily accessible webs with a long stick to expose the caterpillars inside.

Southwest Region Fishing Skills: River Fishing — Bass

Saturday, July 13 • 9 a.m.–2 p.m. Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center 201 W. Riviera Drive, Joplin, MO 64804 Registration required. Call 888-283-0364 by July 12. All ages

Southwest Missouri offers lots of opportunities to fish and enjoy the outdoors. This river fishing clinic will focus on fishing for bass species in our local waterways. We will talk about locations to fish, strategies, equipment, rules and regulations, and how to catch different species of bass. We will meet at Shoal Creek Conservation Center and after the classroom portion, go down to Shoal Creek and fish. All students 16 and older must have a valid fishing license. All equipment will be provided, but you may bring your own.

Ozark Region: Nature at Night

Thursday, July 25 • 8–9:30 p.m. Twin Pines Conservation Education Center Rt. 1, Box 1998, Winona, MO 65588 Registration required. Call 888-283-0364 or visit by July 20. For more information, call 573-325-1381. All ages

This program starts just before dark at Twin Pines, which is the best time to explore nature’s “night shift.” What is the “night shift?” It is more than owls and bats. Many animals are active only at night. Learn what you can expect to see and hear, then we will head out on the trail to enjoy the Missouri Ozarks after dark. Suitable shoes are recommended.

Fungus Among Us

Look for chanterelle mushrooms now through August. Though maybe not quite as well-known as morels, chanterelles are growing in popularity. Chanterelles are bright orange or yellow, although one, the black trumpet chanterelle, is blackish-brown. They are funnel- or trumpet-shaped, with wavy cap edges, and are found in the same places as morels. For more on Missouri’s edible mushrooms, visit

Fishing in the Dark

Beat the summer heat. Try night fishing for crappie. All you need is a flashlight, a pole, some bait, and a good fishing hole. Browse places to fish at

Natural Events to See This Month

Here’s what’s going on in the natural world.

  • Blackeyed Susans bloom
  • Young hummingbirds visit feeders
  • Young raccoons leave dens
  • Dragonflies lay eggs in ponds, streams, and wetlands
  • Rattlesnakes hunt mostly at night

Find more events in your area at

This Issue's Staff

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld

Associate Editor - Larry Archer

Staff Writer - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Heather Feeler
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Staff Writer - Joe Jerek

Creative Director - Stephanie Thurber

Art Director - Cliff White

Designer - Les Fortenberry
Designer - Marci Porter

Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner

Circulation - Laura Scheuler