MDC’s Cape Nature Center hosts evening elk program

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – Elk will be the focus of the November Nature Center at Night event at the Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center Nov. 12, from 5 to 8 p.m. Elk were restored to the Missouri Ozarks in 2011, so it's important for Missourians to learn how biologists are managing the herd, according to MDC naturalist Angela Pierce.

"We're proud to have brought elk back to our state," said Pierce. "We'll learn all about elk and talk about how our population is doing."

Plentiful before European settlement, elk disappeared from Missouri by 1865. In July 2010, the Conservation Commission directed the Department to reinstate plans to restore elk to a specified zone in the Ozarks with plentiful habitat.

"We hope folks will stop by and learn about these large amazing animals," Pierce said.

Naturalist led programs will begin at 5:30 and 7 p.m. Youth and adult groups are welcome to attend this free program.

Pierce added this Nature Center at Night event would make a perfect preview for those who might consider taking the MDC's self-guided driving tour at Peck Ranch Conservation Area where the elk reside. Peck Ranch is located near Winona in Shannon County. The driving tour is open sunrise to sunset seven days a week (except during calving season April 1 to July 1, managed deer hunts, fall firearms deer season, and in the event roads are closed due to weather). The autumn is a great time to take the tour as the bulls are bugling to attract harems of cows.

For more information on programs at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center go online to For more information about the self-guided driving tour at Peck Ranch CA, go online to