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Volunteer to help Wood Ducks in mid-Missouri

COLUMBIA, Mo. — The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) invites volunteers to participate in its annual Wood Duck Nest Box Day at Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area in Boone County.

MDC hosts this event each year to clean, repair, and refill more than 100 nesting boxes with fresh wood chips. These nest boxes provide an enormous amount of quality brood-rearing areas for local wood ducks. Unlike other waterfowl species that nest on the ground, wood ducks nest in natural tree cavities and special nest boxes mounted on poles in or near water.

MDC relies on volunteers to keep these nest boxes in good condition and ready for use in the spring. Learn more about wood ducks from MDC’s online Field Guide at https://nature.mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/field-guide/wood-duck.

This year’s event will take place on Saturday, March 4, from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Volunteers and staff will meet and split into groups at the Eagle Bluffs headquarters, 6700 W. Route K, south of Columbia. Lunch will be provided, but participants should bring snacks and water to have in the field. Volunteers will need to have the ability to walk in knee- to waist-deep mud and water.

Sometimes the weather can be harsh, so volunteers should bring all necessary outerwear to work outdoors that day, including chest waders, knee or hip boots, and gloves. MDC will provide some chest waders, but participants should bring their own if possible.

Register to attend this event by March 1 by calling MDC Wildlife Biologist Clayton Light at 573-445-3882, or email Clayton.Light@mdc.mo.gov.