Bennett Spring Savanna
Savanna Bennett Spring Savanna © Larry Nolan

Places We Protect

Bennett Spring Savanna

Missouri

A living window into the past, this savanna looks much like it did more than a century ago.

According to land-survey records from 1846, many of the same species exist today as did more than a hundred years ago.

Why You Should Visit 

On this high-quality savanna, scattered oaks and hickories raise full, gnarled canopies, while tall bottlebrush grass, little bluestem and blazing stars wave beneath. The ravines and creeks are worth exploring for the chance of meeting a shy turtle, delicate ferns or elusive birds.

Conditions

The savanna is under intense study, so one might notice trees flagged to delineate test plots or other studies. The terrain is steep near the ravines. While you're never far from the highway, a topographic map and compass may be useful in navigating the ravines.  There are no designated trails.

What TNC Has Done/Is Doing

Ongoing management, including the use of controlled burns, is restoring the grass/woodland complex, creating a habitat similar to that which existed prior to European settlement. 

Why TNC Selected This Site  

Bennett Spring Savanna is one of the last intact Ozark savannas, a globally unique landscape.  It protects part of the recharge area to nearby Bennett Springs, one of the Midwest's most popular fishing destinations.

Give Nature a Hand

Volunteers offer the Conservancy a way to complete more critically important work while developing lasting friendships and having a lot of fun. Learn more about volunteer opportunities with The Nature Conservancy in Missouri.

What to See: Plants

Look for oaks, hickories, bottlebrush grass, Indian grass, blazing stars, Downy blue gentian, pink milkwort, royal catchfly, stiff aster. 

What to See: Wildlife

Baltimore checkerspot butterfly, ringed salamander, three-toed box turtle, woodland snakes and other commonly seen woodland animals such as wild turkeys.

Gear

Check local weather forecast and dress accordingly.  Long pants and sleeves, hiking boots, hat and drinking water are recommended.  During warm weather, light color and light-weight clothing is suggested.  Repellent, binoculars and field guide(s) are worth bringing.

Questions? 

Call 314-968-1105 or email missouri@tnc.org

Rocks and grasses at edge of a large spring.
Bennett Spring Savanna Rocks and grasses at edge of a large spring. © Byron Jorjorian