Bears, elk and mountain lions on tap at MDC Gorman Discovery Center

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Kansas City
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Black bears, elk and mountain lions are the largest free-roaming wild mammals in Missouri. Though their numbers are limited in our state, their size and role the natural world make them fascinating.

The Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) Anita B. Gorman Discovery Center at 4750 Troost Ave. in Kansas City will offer three programs devoted to these creatures. MDC experts will talk about these animals and separate fact from fiction regarding their presence in the state. Each program begins with a reception at 6:30 p.m. and a presentation at 7 p.m.

They include:

  • Black Bears on Tuesday, Jan. 15. Join a discussion about resident black bears in southern Missouri and ongoing research into their habits and population numbers.
  • Mountain Lions on Tuesday, Feb. 19. In recent years young male mountain lions searching for territories have been confirmed in Missouri. A member of the MDC Mountain Lion Response Team will share facts about the big cats and how reported sightings are investigated.
  • Elk on Tuesday, March 19. Elk once roamed throughout Missouri. Now, they are being restored to a target area in a portion of three counties in southeast Missouri near the Current River. While elk will never roam the entire state as in pre-settlement times, wildlife watchers will be able to see free-ranging elk in the target zone centered at MDC’s Peck Ranch Conservation Area. An expert will talk about the history of elk in the state and the restoration in the target area.