Nature Centers

Missouri's nature and interpretive centers help you and your family connect with nature in a variety of ways.

  • Take a walk on an interpretive trail or nature trail.
  • Learn about wildlife through live exhibits.
  • Attend workshops or classes on a multitude of topics, including outdoor skills.

Nature Center Events

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:00am

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

No registration required (all ages)
Did you know the world's fastest animal calls Kansas City home? Come learn about the amazing peregrine falcon and the Missouri Department of Conservation's efforts in restoring their population. Experience what goes on high in the sky with exclusive behind the scenes video clips of nature's sky speedsters. For more information email burr.oak@mdc.mo.gov

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 10:00am to 2:30pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (all ages) Many signs are popping up to let us know spring is just around the corner: frogs are calling, turtles are active and birds are nesting. Going on a hike is a great way to experience the sights and sounds of spring. Come and make a hiking stick to take with you on your next adventure. Classes to create them will begin at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. Class size is limited and kids must be with an adult, no registration is required. Come take a hike with us outside or enjoy one of our other spring-time activities inside!

Register by March 3

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 11:00am to 12:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Try your hand at woodcarving with members of the Southern Missouri Woodcarving Artists as they teach carving techniques and show how to transform wood into works of art. Ages 12-adult.

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 11:00am to 12:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (ages 3-8; all welcome) Join volunteer naturalists for a fantastic journey through forests, streams and other magical places as they read select books. Children will participate in a hands-on nature activity.

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Visit with members of the Southern Missouri Woodcarving Artists as they share information with the “wood-be” carver, demonstrate carving techniques, and show works in progress. All ages.

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (ages 3-8; all welcome) Join volunteer naturalists for a fantastic journey through forests, streams and other magical places as they read select books. Children will participate in a hands-on nature activity.

Register by March 3

Date: Saturday, March 3, 2018 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Learn how to read and use both a map and compass in the class. After we learn the basics, we’ll step outside to put our new knowledge to use. Ages 12 and up with an adult mentor.

Register by March 6

Date: Tuesday, March 6, 2018 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

At dusk in early spring, the American woodcock (aka timberdoodle) does its strange courtship dance which is one of the most interesting bird spectacles of spring. With luck, we’ll be watching. Dress warmly and wear hiking shoes as Volunteer Naturalist Dan Liles leads you on this three-mile hike. Ages 8-adult.

Date: Tuesday, March 6, 2018 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (adults) Come and learn a great way to deal with that water logged spot in your yard and do your part for storm water management, or just create a special spot in your yard for more water tolerant plants. Rain gardens are great for the environment and a new way to garden. Learn everything from arrangement to plant selection.

Register by March 8

Date: Thursday, March 8, 2018 - 9:30am to 10:30am

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

(Ages 0–3)
*Please register each child.

Reservations begin Feb 22.
It’s always a perfect time to enjoy nature. Join us for a stroller walk outdoors. Discover how nature appeals to our senses no matter what our age.

Date: Thursday, March 8, 2018 - 10:00am to 10:45am

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Missouri toads are colorful, harmless, vocal, and valuable. We’ll have fun learning about these “toad”-ally cool creatures. Ages 3-6. No registration required. Please no organized groups.

Date: Thursday, March 8, 2018 - 11:15am to 12:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Missouri toads are colorful, harmless, vocal, and valuable. We’ll have fun learning about these “toad”-ally cool creatures. Ages 3-6. No registration required. Please no organized groups.

Date: Thursday, March 8, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

No registration required (all ages)
Ever wonder what it takes to keep all of the nature center reptiles, amphibians, and fish happy? Thanks to some amazing animal care volunteers, they are fed a delicious smorgasbord of crickets, worms, minnows, and more! Drop by to visit with the volunteers and staff as they feed the hungry critters. Youth and adult groups welcome.

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 - 8:00am to 2:30pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Online Registration is not available, please call 573-290-5218 to get form emailed to you. Workshops will include information on naturescaping best practices, propagating native plants, creating a wildlife habitat, and the importance of pollinators. Gardeners and property owners alike will learn how to create a better habitat for wildlife.

Register by March 10

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 - 9:00am to 4:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Join us as we hike the rugged trail at Magnolia Hollow Conservation Area. Enjoy the views along the Mississippi River bluffs and the surrounding forest as we explore the area. Hike is 4 miles and rated moderate to difficult. This program is for women only. Girls ages 14-17 accompanied by an adult female are welcome.
If riding with us, please select that event.
If driving on own, please select that event. Parking may be limited.
Dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes.
Bring water, a snack, and any comfort items
Will be cancelled if poor weather.

Register by March 10

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 - 9:00am to 4:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Join us as we hike the rugged trail at Magnolia Hollow Conservation Area. Enjoy the views along the Mississippi River bluffs and the surrounding forest as we explore the area. Hike is 4 miles and rated moderate to difficult. This program is for women only. Girls ages 14-17 accompanied by an adult female are welcome.
If riding with us, please select that event.
If driving on own, please select that event. Parking may be limited.
Dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes.
Bring water, a snack, and any comfort items
Will be cancelled if poor weather.

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 - 10:00am to 2:00pm

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

Explore ecosystems and food webs during this month's Scout Discovery Table. The Scout Discovery Table is a way to help Boy and Girl Scouts earn a portion of a badge relating to nature and wildlife. This month, scouts will discover how food webs relate to ecosystems, what an ecosystem is, and what types of ecosystems can be found in Missouri. They will also learn about ways that they can improve their local ecosystem. Scout Discovery Tables are open to scout groups and the general public.

Register by March 8

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 - 10:00am to 12:00pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Registration required (ages 11+; youngsters must be accompanied by an adult participant)
Spring is here and the toms are strutting. That can only mean one thing to some people: spring turkey season is here! For more than 50 years, Missourians have enjoyed pursuing these large elusive birds. Join us as we explore the basics of turkey hunting, including locations, equipment, techniques and more. For more information email burr.oak@mdc.mo.gov

Register by March 10

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

Wildlife Signs and Tracking
March 10th• Saturday • 1:00pm – 3:00pm.
(Ages 7 and up)
Reservations begin February 24th.
Many animals are often seldom seen, however, their signs are everywhere! Join us as we explore various animal sign identification techniques including scat identification, skull identification, and track identification (including making our own wildlife tracks). We will also take a hike to see if we can spot some evidence of wildlife ourselves.

Register each participant individually

Register by March 13

Date: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 9:00am to 11:00am

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Migratory song birds will soon be finding their way back to Missouri. While some will stay and nest here, others will be just passing through on their way to northern breeding grounds. Join Volunteer Naturalist Myra Scroggs for an introductory program and then walk the trails to look for birds. Bring field guides and binoculars if you have them. Ages 7-adult.

Register by March 13

Date: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Take a stroll on the trails for a close look at wildflowers. Ages 8-adult.

Register by March 10

Date: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 6:30pm to 8:00pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Registration required (ages 7-13)
Geocaching is a great way to combine technology and nature while looking for hidden items. Come out for an evening of fun as we grab our GPS units and head out to explore nature and find those treasures. For more information email burr.oak@mdc.mo.gov

Register by March 13

Date: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 6:30pm to 8:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Whether you fish for crappie during winter or wait for them to spawn in the spring, crappie can be caught throughout the year. Join Conservation Department Fisheries Biologist Shane Bush and Outdoor Skills Specialist Greg Collier to explore when, where, and how to catch one of the Ozarks favorite panfish. Ages 10 and up with an adult mentor.

Date: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (adults) Are you a hunter or curious about how to prepare game birds like quail, turkey and pheasant if you were to try hunting? Then this program is for you. Hank Shaw, 2013 James Beard Award winner and author of four best-selling wild game cookbooks, will present a colorful program on getting the most out of your small game, including upland birds, rabbits, squirrels and even furbearers. From properly handling the animal in the field to getting the best tasting dishes out of every morsel, Hank captures it all. Copies of his books will be on sale the evening of the event.

Register by March 13

Date: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:30am

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Registration required (ages 9-11)
Explore life at the top of the food chain with a bird's eye view of the world of raptors. We will soar through vulture culture, hawk talk, and owl prowls as we learn about the behaviors and adaptations of fascinating birds. For more information email burr.oak@mdc.mo.gov

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