Blog Archives

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Discover Nature’s Edibles With A Sampling At Powder Valley

Photo courtesy MDC.

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) invites you to discover the many benefits of naturally-sourced foods by attending a special event at Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center in Kirkwood. Harvest Wild: Water will be held Saturday, Sept. 28 at the nature center from 5:30-8:30 p.m. The event is free and open to all ages. Visitors are especially encouraged to attend and share the experience with the whole family. Hunting and gathering from nature is the ultimate expression of locally-sourced foods.

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Columbia Bottom Conservation Area Opens After Flooding To Limited Access

Photo courtesy MDC.

The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) has re-opened Columbia Bottom Conservation Area for public access. However, that access will be restricted for the immediate future.

Due to extensive flood damage, public vehicle access and parking on the area will be limited and public access will mainly be walk-in. The public will only be able to enter the area in the following locations:

– Park in the visitor’s center parking lot and walk into the area

– Drive on the main area road up to Parking Lot C, approximately 0.3 miles from the main entrance, and walk into the area

– Park in Parking Lot V, located near the area maintenance shop just south of the main entrance, and walk into the area

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New Book Gives Refreshing Look At Solution To The Asian Carp Crisis

Picture yourself out for a celebration dinner at an upscale seafood restaurant. So many choices on the menu: Orange Roughy, Chilean Seabass, fresh lobster – Asian Carp? Hang on, wait just a second, the last item must be a mistake! Who would put a “trash fish” like the Asian Carp on the menu? Joseph Classen, that’s who.

Classen’s new book, “Eat the Enemy!” explains why the invasive Asian carp should be on every menu and family dining table around the country. The outdoorsman, author and photographer is working to spread the word about a clean, healthy, undervalued and an entirely wasted resource that also happens to be environmentally devastating our rivers.

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MDC hosts Discover Nature Schools Nature Unhooked teacher workshop Sept. 6 at Powder Valley Nature Center

Photo courtesy MDC.

Teachers will learn about this free program which provides grant funding for middle school life science units.

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is offering a program that meets the educational curriculum needs of Missouri science teachers and includes unique grant opportunities.

MDC invites teachers to attend a Discover Nature Schools (DNS) teacher workshop for Nature Unhooked, the DNS aquatic instructional unit designed for grades 6-8.  This program provides grant funding for middle school life science units to help cover educational materials and field trips.

The workshop will be held Friday, Sept. 6 from 8:30 a.m.- 3 p.m. at Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center in Kirkwood.  The workshop is free of charge for educators.  The nature center is located at 11715 Cragwold Road, near the intersection of I-270 and I-44.

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“Roll and Stroll: The Busch Greenway by Bike, Wheelchair, Scooter, or Foot”

Photo by MDC Staff, courtesy Missouri Department of Conservation.

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) and the Recreation Council of Greater St. Louis invite people of all abilities to come and take a spin on a portion of the Busch Greenway located within Missouri Research Park in St. Charles.

The “Roll and Stroll: The Busch Greenway by Bike, Wheelchair, Scooter, or Foot” event takes place Saturday, Aug. 24, from 5-7 p.m. This free program is tailored to persons who have disabilities and their families or support givers, but people of all abilities can attend. If it’s got wheels, and you power it, you can take it for a spin on the Busch Greenway. Three-wheeled cycles, bikes pulling carts or wagons, wheelchairs, and scooters are all welcome and everyone is free to go at their own pace. The event is open to anyone who would like to walk the trail as well.

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Tasty Treats In The Garden

Photo courtesy Gateway Greening.

Join Gateway Greening on Sunday, September 15, 6 – 9 p.m., at the annual Chefs in a Garden event where local chefs will create tasting plates from local ingredients to share with all of you. The event is located at the Saint Louis Science Center, 5050 Oakland Ave., St. Louis, MO 63110.

For ticket information, CLICK HERE.
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Climate Change Chases Armadillos North

Photo courtesy of Missouri Department of Conservation.

 

By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)

Possums on the half-shell, otherwise known as nine-banded armadillos, are no longer just showing up as roadkill on Missouri roadways. The critters are finding their way onto golf courses, lawns and backyard gardens.

Missouri Department of Conservation officials recently sent out an advisory that these visitors from Texas are now here to stay. And residents need to be aware of their “strange skills” and the problems they pose for highway drivers, gardeners and residents seeking to trap and dispose of the unusual, bacteria-laden animals.

“I’ve been seeing more and more of them dead along the highways on my Missouri travels,” said Kirkwood’s Bill Ruppert, president of Ruppert Gardens & Chicken Ranch.

“I recently saw one that was hit in the middle of the road and I stopped to get a look before the turkey vultures – what I call nature’s undertakers – had a chance to take care of him. Armadillos really are some odd-looking little animals.”

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“Climate Change Was On My Mind…”

Don Corrigan at Rocky Falls. Photo by Emery Styron

By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)

After three major floods in four years, a lot of Missourians living in flood plains are throwing in the towel — and a very wet one at that. They also have become believers in climate change, because seeing is believing.

Climate change was on my mind a few weeks ago when riding my bike on the Meramec Greenway. Actually, there was very little greenway left to ride. Most of the trail was under water. So I rode on top of the Valley Park Levee and a stretch of Marshall Road between flood barricades and the flood waters.

“This seems to be happening every year now,” I said to myself, while swatting mosquitoes; watching tadpoles swim over the roadway; and enjoying herons in flight over the waves of Tree Court Industrial Park and the fields of the Kirkwood Athletic Association.

It’s been a while since I’ve written about climate change in this space, but it’s not for a lack of material. Among the materials on my desk for reviewing:

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The Secret Life of Snakes at Powder Valley

Copperhead photo courtesy MDC.

Spend an evening with Dr. Benjamin C. Jellen learning about a new snake study in the St. Louis area, Friday, August 23, from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center is included as a study site. Researchers are tracking snakes, including Copperheads, to better understand their overall ecology and population dynamics. Learn how they do this and see some of their findings.

Unique to this investigation is an emphasis on working with the public to gain insight into perspectives about native snakes in order to combine snake ecology with public opinions to learn ways to lessen negative associations and risks to both animals and people.

To register for the event, CLICK HERE.

Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center is located at 11715 Cragwold Rd., Kirkwood, MO 63122.

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What’s The Weather?

City of St. Charles’ Frontier Park. (Holly Shanks)

Steve Reed, a Sunset Hills resident, recently sent commentary about the severe flooding in our local areas.  Please take a moment and read about his concerns.

 

By Steve Reed, Sunset Hills (Guest Commentator)

What’s with the weather?

Galatians 6:5 “For each one will bear his own load.”

I once heard a sermon about a man who awakes in the middle of the night feeling uncomfortably chilled. To get warm he needs to rouse himself, grasp the blanket at the foot of his bed, and pull it over him. And yet he does nothing. Half awake, and with dim awareness that any movement will expose him to cold room air, his mind turns from the effort to act, and he snuggles deeper into the blankets for warmth.

We have had recent severe prolonged flooding in the Mid-west causing multiple damage: crops destroyed and spring plantings missed; buildings and equipment destroyed; loss of livestock and human lives. Damage cost estimates are $ 5 billion and above, most of which is uninsured.  The floodwaters which flow to the Gulf of Mexico carry farmland fertilizer which results in an enormous, oxygen depleted “dead zone” in the Gulf, killing fish and causing fishermen to seek disaster relief along with farmers.

This flooding is not unprecedented. Comparable flooding occurred in 1993. But what should concern us is that the frequency of severe flooding rises higher and higher. Why?

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