MDC offers free loess hills field day May 13 in Holt County

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Forest City, Mo. – Glaciers, winds and erosion left unique loess soil bluffs along the Missouri River valley in the state’s northwest and Kansas City regions. They were a mix of forest, open woodlands and prairies when pioneers began settling the region in the mid-1800s. Remnants of those ecological niches remain due to steep or rough terrain, and today they are interspersed with agriculture uses. To help landowners achieve goals for these areas, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will offer a free Loess Hill Timber and Prairie Field Day 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 13, on a farm near Forest City.

MDC foresters will provide advice and take participants on a walk through timber on private land in the morning session. The tour will showcase forest and wildlife benefits from timber stand improvement, timber sales, and how to obtain a forest stewardship plan.

In the afternoon, experts will discuss loess hill prairie restoration. The walking tour will cover restoration challenges, and the benefits accomplished on the property. Cost share opportunities are available for both timber stand improvement and prairie restoration in the loess hills. Wildlife can benefit from prairie restoration. Some bluffs may also hold remnant prairies with unique plant species.

The field day will be held at the Rex Reynolds farm at the northwest edge of Forest City.  Lunch will be provided by MDC, and participants are asked to register so staff can get a lunch count. For more information, to register, or directions to the farm, contact Jim Pierson, MDC private land conservationist, at 660-442-3173, ext. 114.