Discover Nature

Every week there are new marvels to look for in the outdoors, and Discover Nature highlights these attractions. The Missouri Department of Conservation’s Josh Hartwig brings us the stories of river otters, luna moths, red buds, and other actors as they take center stage in nature’s theater.

You can hear Discover Nature, Mondays at 7:42 a.m. and 5:18 p.m.

Missouri Department of Conservation

A speedy wanderer has returned to Missouri's skies. The Peregrine falcon was nearly wiped out in the mid-1900s due to pesticide poisoning. Historically, peregrines nested in small numbers on bluffs along the Mississippi, Missouri, and Gasconade rivers. By the late 1800s, only a few pairs remained in the state.

flickr user USFWS Midwest Region (

If copperheads are a fear factor for you, there is hope and help. Since they don’t look like other Missouri snakes, they are easy to identify and avoid.

Missouri Department of Conservation

Persimmons are a sweet fall treat often used in breads, puddings, and pies. They're also a favorite for wildlife (so you may have to race the raccoons to harvest them).

MDC Staff

Fall is a great time for hiking. The weather is cooler, the colors are changing, and our conservation areas offer many choices. Here are my top picks for fall hiking this year:

MDC Staff

Discover nature this week with Missouri nuts. The beginning of fall is a great time to gather homegrown nuts in Missouri. Our top three featured nuts that fruit in September and October are black walnuts, pecans, and hickory.