Mudpuppy Conservation Area consists of 1,404 acres in Ripley County at the end of Route BB. The primary purpose of the acquisition was to manage a rare mussel species that occurred in this stretch of the Little Black River.
Starting near the end of the 19th century the Grandin Mill extensively harvested pine in this area. An active sawmill was also located a few miles downstream from the area in the community of King Bee. Some of the bottomland forests were eventually cleared for agriculture and were growing corn and soybeans when purchased by the Department in 1988.
An important aquatic resource on Mudpuppy Conservation Area is the Little Black River. This 3.5 mile stretch of river has been designated an Outstanding State Water Resource by the Department of Natural Resources.
Approximately 1,300 acres of Mudpuppy Conservation Area is forested. Two-hundred of these acres are old fields that have been planted or naturally regenerated in the last 10 years. Approximately 60% of the forested acres are upland forest. Common tree species in the uplands include white oak, black oak, Southern red oak, post oak, shortleaf pine, and mockernut hickory. The bottomlands have higher species diversity and include sugar maple, bitternut hickory, green ash, black walnut, sycamore, sweetgum, white oak, shumard oak and bur oak.