Get Outside in June

By MDC | June 1, 2023
From Missouri Conservationist: June 2023

Moving Out

Young woodchucks strike out on their own. These young woodchucks, also known as groundhogs, leave the care of their parents and make their own burrows. You may see them out and about as they make this big move.

Yay for Yuccas

Yuccas are blooming, so it’s time to look for yucca moths. Peek carefully into the yucca flowers, also known as soapweed. The moths will be the same color as the flowers. The moths and their food plants are an amazing example of mutualism: the moth larvae will eat some of the yucca’s developing seeds, but the yucca can afford that price since the female moth cross-fertilizes the flowers as she deposits her eggs. This amazing relationship was first studied in the 1870s by Charles V. Riley, Missouri’s first official state entomologist.

First Frost?

Annual cicadas begin to sing. Folklore says that cicadas start singing six weeks before the next frost. Whether you believe that or not, it is a sure bet that cicadas herald warm, dry days ahead.

Fascinating Flowers

By June, the beauty of blooming flowers dots the Missouri landscape.

The yellow flowers of our most common bladderwort are among them. As aquatic plants, bladderworts grow in thick floating mats under the water while their flowers, which resemble snapdragons, stand tall above the water. They trap tiny crustaceans, minute aquatic insects, mosquito larvae, and newly hatched tadpoles and fish fry.

Butterfly weed is Missouri’s only orange-flowered milkweed. It blooms in native prairies and other sunny habitats, attracting butterflies. Keep an eye out for coral hairstreak butterflies. The single brood of this uncommon butterfly extends only from mid-June through July and has been described as being addicted to the blossoms of butterfly weed, ignoring all other flowers when they are present.

Free Fishing Days

Saturday and Sunday, June 10 and 11

Visit to find a place to fish.

Registration is not required.

All ages.

During free fishing days, any person may fish state waters without an MDC fishing permit, trout permit, and prescribed area daily tag. However, user fees and permits may still be required at county, city, or private fishing areas. Normal regulations, such as size and daily limits, still apply, too.

Archery with Dad

Sunday, June 18, 2–4 p.m.

Andy Dalton Shooting Range, 4897 N. Farm Road 61, Ash Grove, MO 65604

Registration is not required. Call 417-742-4361 for more information.

All ages.

Come out to the range with Dad and shoot archery for free. We will have instructors here from 2 to 4 pm giving extra instruction and assistance if needed.

Find more events in your area at

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Natural Events to See This Month

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

  • Eastern kingbirds nest.
  • Western ratsnakes lay eggs.
  • Warmouth spawning peaks.
  • Three-toed box turtles mate.
  • Fawns are born.

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