National Fish & Wildlife Refuge
|4200 East New Haven Road
Columbia, MO 65201 - 8709
Phone Number: 573-876-1826
|Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
|The Big Muddy Refuge is allowing the Missouri River to be a river again.|
Continued . . . Expansive floodplain forests, wetlands and fields provide habitats utilized by over 250 species of migratory birds. Dozens of species of resident wildlife, including wild turkeys, white-tailed deer, bobcats, cottontail rabbits, river otters, raccoons, squirrels, beavers, muskrats and reptiles and amphibians have benefited from the formation of the refuge.
When the mighty Missouri rises to "bank full" or higher levels, a mix of diverse floodplain habitat types are available not only to the wildlife species mentioned above, but to fish and other aquatic species.
Floodplains are important spawning sites for numerous native big river fish species. Side channels, naturally created as well as man-made, have benefited fish, shorebirds and waterfowl. The first larval pallid sturgeon, an endangered species, found in 50 years in the Lower Missouri River were located in shallow, slow-moving water in a side channel on one of the refuge units. World-class flathead and blue catfish patrol the sandbars and islands on and adjacent to the refuge.
Ongoing work on the refuge conducted in conjunction with the Army Corps of Engineers has improved fishery habitat in the Missouri River by creating large sandbars and slow-flowing waters important to larval and juvenile fish.
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