Visitors Guide to the
Cape Girardeau Nature Center
2289 County Park Drive
Cape Girardeau, Missouri
573-290-5218
 

 
Accessible Parking Accessible Picnic Facilities Accessible Interpretive Exhibits Accessible Hiking Trails Accessible Wildlife Viewing Accessible Information Center Accessible Fishing Opportunities Accessible Gift Shop Accessible Restrooms
   
 





 
 

The Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center is located in Cape Girardeau's North County Park and showcases the rich cultural history and diverse natural resources of Southeast Missouri. Because the nature center is located near the Conservation Department's Regional Headquarters for the Southeast Region and is operated by the Missouri Department of Conservation it is considered a conservation campus. Opened in 2005, the facility was made a reality through a close collaboration with the State of Missouri, the Cape Girardeau County Government, and many private donors. The area is intended to connect people with the land because people who interact with nature outdoors tend to care deeply about what they use or visit.

Indoors, the nature center features hands-on exhibits for all ages. Gallery visitors can start their experience by learning from Paul Corbin’s collection of Native American artifacts by viewing primitive tools that were used to harvest plants and animals hundreds of years ago. There are interactive exhibits that encourage exploration of the forest, marsh, swamp, and big river habitats of Southeast Missouri. The nature center also features a 160-seat auditorium, three classrooms, a scientific research laboratory, freshwater aquariums, an indoor wildlife viewing area, and a gift shop.

The nature center grounds include gardens featuring native wildflowers. At the Kid's Fishing Pond, 15 and younger may fish the pond for catfish, bass, crappie, and sunfish. Poles and worms are available for use at no charge and the pond is handicapped accessible. Adults can fish at the handicapped accessible pond in the surrounding North County Park. Hikers can take advantage of the “White Oak Trace” that features two miles of nature trails that traverse rolling river hills with sinkholes, deep hollows, and ravines covered with prominent stands of poplar and oak or the Ridgetop Trail which is a third of a mile handicapped accessible trail. The grounds include a hummingbird garden, native plant landscape, a reconstructed swamp and a demonstration marsh. The forested areas attract migrating songbirds and forest birds. The pond, marsh, and swamp attract waterfowl, shorebirds, and water loving songbirds. Naturalist-led programs for schools, youth groups, and community groups can be scheduled with a two-week advanced notice. Also scheduled monthly programs and events for the general public are free of charge. Call the Nature Center to schedule a program or request a list of activities.

 
     
  The Missouri Audubon Society maintains a checklist for birds that can be seen on Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center campus.  
   
  Visiting the Cape Girardeau Nature Center
     Building Hours:
          Tuesday through Saturday: 8 am - 5 pm
          Closed on Sundays and Mondays
          Closed on Thanksgiving, the day after Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day.
     Area Hours:
          Open daily from sunrise to 10 pm

There is no charge to visit the Cape Girardeau Nature Center.
 
     
  Sorry, No Pets Allowed. It's not that the Department is against pets, it's just that they can disrupt the flow of wildlife and the primary mission of certain Conservation facilities is nature study. Pets can harass or harm wildlife and destroy habitat and not everyone is comfortable sharing trails with pets, and noise and droppings can also be problems.  
   
 
Directions: The Cape Girardeau Nature Center is located within Cape Girardeau's North County Park, just east of I-55 (Exit 99) off Kingshighway (MO-61).
 
   
  GPS Coordinates
37° 20.669'
W 89° 35.418'
 
   
  Learn more about the Cape Girardeau area.  
   
     
  Cape Girardeau Nature Center
The official website of the Cape Girardeau Nature Center provided by the Missouri Department of Conservation
.
 
     
 
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