Prairies of the Big Muddy
Published: December 11, 2013
Presentation by Mike Leahy, Natural Areas Coordinator for the Mo. Dept. of Conservation
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Minsky’s Pizza in the City Market – 427 Main St., Kansas City, MO
Two hundred years ago around a quarter of the floodplain of the Missouri River was covered by waving grasses, sedges, rushes and wildflowers – a bottomland prairie community. Inhabiting this natural community was a wide array of creatures from massasauga rattlesnakes to American bitterns.
These bottomland prairies were of historical significance including the cultural history of the Missouri Indians as well as early European and European American explorers and settlers.
Mike Leahy, Natural Areas Coordinator for the Mo. Dept. of Conservation, described the physical, biological and cultural attributes that led to the formation and then destruction of the prairies of the Missouri River floodplain. We’ll also explore current places to visit to see remnants of this natural community type and current efforts at protecting, restoring or recovering bottomland prairies and associated habitats of the floodplain.
Mike is also the author of “Discover Missouri Natural Areas”, published by the Mo. Dept. of Conservation.
The Big Muddy Speakers Series in Kansas City
was hosted by Friends of Lakeside Nature Center, Little Blue River Watershed Coalition, Missouri River Relief, Friends of Big Muddy and Healthy Rivers Partnership with the following list of partners. All speakers are presenting for free. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with all of us!
The Big Muddy Speaker Series is also held monthly in Rocheport and St. Charles.
- Click here for Rocheport info»
- Click here for St. Charles info
Resources and Links
- More about Missouri Natural Areas – MDC
- Purchase a copy of “Discover Missouri Natural Areas” by Mike Leahy.
- Archive of Missouri Natural Areas newsletters
- “Restoring the Prairie: Missouri’s Endangered Habitat” – article in St. Louis Beacon, Sept. 30, 2013
- Missouri Prairie Foundation website • Missouri Prairie Journal archive
- Missouri Native Plant Society
- Missouri Audubon
- Missouri River Bird Observatory