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Joplin YMCA Kids Visit the Walter Woods Conservation Area

Area kids get back to nature as part of a special class.
JOPLIN, MO.--- The Missouri Department of Conservation wants to help youth explore and discover nature. They say too many times kids have lost touch with nature. The Walter Woods Conservation Area was a stop for Joplin YMCA kids Wednesday.

"I enjoy going here. It's really cool. I like fishing here and walking through the nature trail," said Shelbi Post, Joplin Y Camper.

About 50 kids got a chance to fish and learn about different types of wildlife like snakes and spiders.

"Some people don't like spiders or they have a healthy fear of snakes, but that's okay. You just need to realize that they do have a place in nature," said Kevin Badgley, Missouri Department of Conservation.

Badgley says too many times kids are inside and not in tune with nature.

"I have kids that literally don't know what a grasshopper is or they're scared of a grasshopper. So we've had people kind of seperate from outdoors and they don't understand," said Badgley.

Calvin Ledford says he doesn't learn enough about nature, but he values what he learned today.

"People educated in nature usually spend more time in nature. It's good to be out and doing stuff instead of sitting inside and doing nothing," said Calvin Ledford, Joplin Y Camper

Badgley says these kids are the next generation of conservation in missouri.

"This is one way to educate the next generation, let them know about the animals so they can form an opinion and be our future of conservation here in Missouri," he said.

Badgley says 5,000 to 6,000 kids come through the Walter Woods Conservation Area each year.

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