Places to Go: Ralph and Martha Perry Memorial CA

By Larry Archer | May 1, 2023
From Missouri Conservationist: May 2023

Ralph and Martha Perry Memorial Conservation Area

From humble beginnings

Like a monarch butterfly, which begins life as a near microscopic egg on a stalk of milkweed, the Ralph and Martha Perry Memorial Conservation Area (CA) has its own modest origin story.

Now consisting of more than 4,100 acres in Johnson, Pettis, and Saline counties, Perry CA began as a 40-acre contribution from the Perrys, with additional funding to grow the area when additional land became available, said MDC Wildlife Management Biologist Joe Coy.

“It didn’t happen all at once, but it happened fairly quickly because it was large tracts that was coming up for sale,” Coy said.

At more than 100 times its original size, the area now offers a variety of habitats, including wetlands and two lakes, a shooting range, service roads for hiking, and several areas open to camping.

With approximately 900 acres of managed wetlands, fed primarily by overflow from the Blackwater River, the area attracts migrating waterfowl, shorebirds, and the people who like to watch them, he said.

“It’s a premier spot for migrating waterfowl in general, because during that time frame of May, you’ll still be catching quite a few later migrating birds, like blue-winged teal and northern shovelers,” he said.


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This Issue's Staff

Magazine Manager - Stephanie Thurber
Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld
Associate Editor - Larry Archer
Photography Editor - Cliff White
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Staff Writer - Joe Jerek
Staff Writer – Dianne Van Dien
Designer - Shawn Carey
Designer - Marci Porter
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Circulation - Laura Scheuler