Celebrate native grasslands with MDC and The Nature Conservancy at Prairie Day on Sept. 9 at Dunn Ranch

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Eagleville, Mo. – The past and present role of native grasslands in the rolling hills of northwest Missouri will be celebrated at a free Prairie Day event on Saturday, Sept. 9, at Dunn Ranch Prairie and Pawnee Prairie near Eagleville. Visitors can tour exhibits and display tables, take wildflower walks, and ride on a wagon to see bison grazing on prairie in Harrison County. This event is hosted by the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and the Loess Hills and Osage Trails Missouri Master Naturalists.

Visitors will get a glimpse of a prairie ecosystem that once dominated northwest Missouri.

“Our increasingly rare prairies harbor dozens of unique plants and animals not regularly encountered,” said Dillon Freiburger, MDC natural history biologist. “Prairie days is an excellent opportunity to view these species and hear stories about them from experts.”

A guided birding hike will be offered from 7 to 9 a.m. at MDC’s Pawnee Prairie Conservation Area northwest of Dunn Ranch. Exhibits, displays, and departure points for hikes and the bison tour will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at TNC’s shelter across from the ranch headquarters, 16970 W. 150th St., Hatfield, Mo. MDC experts will be present to discuss the role of native grasses in cattle forage rotations. Missouri Western State University professors and students will discuss prairie plants and critters. A storyteller will talk about how Native Americans interacted with the wildlife and plants on the prairie.

This program is open to all ages. Lunch concessions will be available onsite. For more information on Prairie Days, call MDC’s Northwest Regional Office at 816-271-3100. To learn more about prairie in Missouri, visit Prairies | Missouri Department of Conservation (mo.gov).