Environment Missouri, a state environmental advocacy group, kicked off its campaign today by calling on state legislators to take action on what they say are $400 million worth of back-logged repairs to state parks.
The organization says that state parks are crucial to the economy, bringing an average of 18 million visitors a year, and providing over 14,000 jobs.
Parks are currently funded by (bear with me) half of a one-tenth-of-one-cent sales tax, a tax voters have continued to renew over the years. But Environment Missouri thinks that it’s not enough.
If you live or spend time in St. Charles or Lincoln Counties, you’ve probably noticed an unusual number of snow geese around. The birds have been congregating near the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers — estimates of their numbers run as high as 20,000.
This summer’s devastating drought and heat wave actually benefited some of Missouri’s native birds, in particular the bobwhite quail.
Bobwhite quail build their nests on the ground, and the hot and dry weather from both this summer and last provided better conditions for incubation. Max Alleger is a wildlife ecologist with the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC). He says the bobwhite quail population took a big hit in 2008 due to record-setting rainfall, as it was hard for them to keep their eggs warm on wet ground.