JANUARY – JUNE 14, 2016



Program areas consist of Bat and Cave Awareness, Outdoor Safety Awareness, and Snake Awareness.  January thru June 14, 2016 the team presented a grand total of 77-Session - Displays reaching an actual count of 2,204 participants in the three areas listed.  The team consist of Missouri Master Naturalist Melvin Johnson along with two teenage Missouri Dept. of Conservation Jr. Leaders, Deah Powell – Seiferd and Branden Powell.  These two MDC Jr. Leaders have logged some 150 – volunteers hours in 2016.  Late spring 2016 two additional Missouri Master Naturalist and two Missouri Dept. of Conservation – Boy Scouts of America Conservation Venturing Crew 2006 teen members joined the team as support and in-training.  The team also involves 12 – 16 organizational support partners who provide additional resources and contacts.  These partners range from an international organization, national organizations, federal and state agencies and organizations, along with local agencies and organizations.


The following is a brief description of each presentation – display area:


  • Bat & Cave Awareness - - - Covers the basic role bats and caves play in the environment and nature; the importance of bats and other cave life; what WNS (White Nose Syndrome) is and how it affects bats; the role karst features play; and the importance of ground water quality.


  • Outdoor Safety Awareness - - -  Is broken down into two areas:

  • Cold Weather covers winter-time safety issues from cities to wilderness areas.

  • Warm Weather covers warm weather safety issues including:  camping and hiking safety, chiggers, heat issues, poisonous and toxic plants, travel safety, ticks, venomous bites and stings, open water safety, weather, and wildlife, etc.


  • Snake Awareness - - - Covers the basic role snakes play in the environment and nature; Missouri’s native snakes, including those non-venomous and venomous; where snakes live and what they eat.  This involves using the following live snakes:  an adult Back Rat Snake, a young Black Rat Snake, baby Black Rat Snakes, a Prairie King Snake, and a Speckled King Snake.


The team’s presentations – displays were with 12- elementary schools, 18- organizations, along with 12- public displays.  A breakdown on the sessions – displays follows:


  • Bat & Cave Awareness:

  • 10- Presentations – Displays were directly Bat & Cave Awareness related.

  • Involved 1 - elementary school, 5 – organizations, along with 4 – public displays.

  • Reached 387 – participants.



  • Outdoor Safety Awareness:

  • 7- Presentations – Displays were directly Outdoor Safety Awareness related.

  • Involved 2 – organizations along with 5 – public displays.

  • Reached 241 – participants.


  • Snake Awareness:

  • 60- Presentations – Displays were directly Snake Awareness related.

  • Involved 11 – elementary schools, 11 – organizations, along with 3 – public displays.

  • Reached 1,567 – participants.



Melvin Johnson, CPRP & MMN

Missouri Master Naturalist Springfield Plateau Chapter