Discover Nature with MDC at State Fair Aug. 11-21

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SEDALIA, Mo. -- Discover nature with the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) at the Missouri State Fair in Sedalia Aug. 11-21. Visit MDC’s Conservation Building from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily to see aquaria full of live fish and other aquatic wildlife along with displays of other live native animals such as snakes, turtles, and amphibians. Ask conservation questions of MDC staff, get educational materials, and have fun.

Check out the Department’s air-conditioned Conservation Kids’ Discovery Room between 10 a.m. and 6 have hands-on fun discovering nature through crafts and other activities.

Enjoy conservation-related demonstrations at the Department’s outdoor pavilion.

  • See a live eagle and other birds of prey up close at the Raptors of Missouri presentation on Aug. 11 and Aug. 20 at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 4 p.m.
  • Learn how to prepare a fresh catch at the Fish Cooking and Cleaning lesson on Aug. 12 and Aug. 13 at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
  • Learn about black bears in Missouri and how to Be Bear Aware Aug. 14 and Aug. 21 at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
  • Learn more about Chronic Wasting Disease, what MDC is doing to limit the spread of this deadly deer disease, and what hunters and others can do to at Missouri’s Deer Herd: CWD Updates on Aug. 15 at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
  • Discover what makes bees, butterflies and other pollinators so important at The Buzz About Insect Pollinators on Aug. 16 and Aug. 17 at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
  • Find out how to stop exotic invasive plants and animals threatening the state at Alien Invaders in Missouri! on Aug. 18 with displays and activities from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • See a working model of a sawmill in operation at Forest Products: The Circular Sawmill on Aug. 19 at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.


Popular Peanut the Turtle has retired from State Fair

One animal offering from MDC that will no longer be at the State Fair or other events is Peanut the Turtle. The large red-eared slider with the misshapen shell is the mascot for the state’s No More Trash! anti-litter campaign. Peanut has been a regular MDC attraction at the State Fair for years.

Due to minor health issues with his shell and his advancing age, Peanut has been retired from traveling and now resides fulltime at MDC’s Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center in Kirkwood. Eliminating the stresses of traveling will help maintain his overall good health. Nature Center staff note that Peanut is doing well for his age of about 30 years. In the wild, red-eared sliders live to be 20 to 40 years.

Peanut’s story started in the 1980s when, as a small turtle, he went through a plastic six-pack ring someone had carelessly left behind. The ring got stuck around his shell. As he grew over the next five or so years, his shell grew around the ring, causing the peanut shape that gave him his name. When he was about 9 years old, someone found the turtle and took him to the St. Louis Zoo where the ring was removed. They named him Peanut because of his shell’s shape and gave him to the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Learn more about MDC programs, events and other offerings at