Wildlife Facts

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Wildlife Facts
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Missouri is home to thousands of kinds of animals without backbones that live in the water. Learn about our crayfish, clams, snails, leeches and aquatic insects.

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You know them as frogs, toads, snakes, turtles, and lizards. Get acquainted with all of Missouri's fascinating herptiles, including 43 amphibians and 75 species and subspecies of reptiles.

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Photo of a male dickcissel clinging to some dried plant stalks.
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More than 390 bird species are known to occur in Missouri. Learn what sets birds apart from other groups of animals. 

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Learn about Missouri's beautiful and important butterflies and moths.

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Blue catfish
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More than 200 kinds of fish occur in Missouri. Learn how Missouri's different kinds of fish are adapted to different kinds of habitat.

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These animals (along with crabs, shrimp, crayfish and others) are arthropods — invertebrates with jointed legs. Learn about Missouri's most common arthropods here.

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Nearly 70 species of wild mammals live in Missouri. Use this page to get acquainted with the mammals you're most likely to see in your neighborhood or at a conservation area.

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Female American black bear
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Follow these guidelines to Be Bear Aware – stay safe in bear country, and keep our bears wild. 

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Wild animals don't make good pets, and it is illegal to possess many wild animals without a valid state or federal permit. If you encounter young wildlife, leave it where you find it.