Endangered American burying beetle could be reintroduced to Missouri

Thursday, August 11, 2011 | 10:43 a.m. CDT

EL DORADO SPRINGS — The Missouri Department of Conservation is holding a public meeting Thursday night on a federal proposal to reintroduce an endangered beetle into the state.

The Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed reintroducing the American burying beetle at the Wah'Kon-Tah Prairie in southwest Missouri. The state agency said the burying beetles proposed for release are being raised at the St. Louis Zoo, which is paying the reintroduction costs.

Thursday's public meeting is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. at the El Dorado Springs Community Center.

American burying beetles were once found in 35 states but have since vanished from much of their original range. The last documented sighting in Missouri was in Newton County in the 1970s. Some still survive in Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska and South Dakota.

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