Looking for a new way to explore and learn about Missouri’s outdoors in the Ozarks and beyond? The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) encourages kids and adults to check out the free mobile gaming app, Agents of Discovery, while exploring natural areas around the state.
“Using technology to make people more comfortable in nature is a cool way to reach out to different Missourians,” said MDC Exhibits Coordinator Susie Wachowski. “Users log in to Agents of Discovery and solve challenges using their nature detective skills.”
Discover nature through completing “Missions,” all while learning about Missouri’s forest, fish, and wildlife. Some of the active missions include:
- Discovery Center Backyard Birds: Begin your mission at the birdfeeder located near the rear exit of the building. Identify, learn, and explore all the native birds you can find in our backyard and yours!
- Eagle Days: Why are there so many bald eagles in Missouri in the winter? Where do they live and what do they eat? Complete the challenges and find out! This mission can be played either at home or during an Eagle Days event. Hurry, this mission goes away Feb. 28!
- Twin Pines Ecosystem Adventure: Who lives at Mule Camp Pond? What creature is making that sound? Play all five challenges at Twin Pines Conservation Education Center and uncover the mystery for yourself.
What type of pollinators are found in in the state? How do bald eagles hunt their food? Find out the answers to these questions and more as you navigate Agents of Discovery.
“Complete nature-based challenges at home, while visiting an MDC nature or visitor center, or while attending MDC events, such as Eagle Days or the Missouri State Fair,” Wachowski said. “You can even fire up the app and play mini games to complete a mission.”
Once finished, users can claim rewards, and challenges can be posted on social media using an MDC Instagram Sticker or grab small prizes at a nearby MDC nature center. The more missions you play, the more rewards you can earn!
“If you want to show off all your hard work, complete missions and share your accomplishments with MDC staff to receive prizes. You can earn Agent Oscar stickers, a custom button, or a lapel pin for completing 1, 4, and 10 missions,” she said. “For this though, you must create a profile on the Agents of Discovery app to show your progress and save completed missions.”
The missions are updated frequently, “so there is always a new way to play and learn more about Missouri’s great outdoors,” she added.
To play Agents of Discovery without Wi-Fi or a data connection, be sure to download the free app and create an Agent profile, pick a mission in your area, and download the mission before heading out. Then it’s up to you and your secret agent tools to find and unlock challenges!
Look for other MDC missions at:
- Anita B. Gorman Discovery Center
- Springfield Nature Center
- Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center
While exploring in nature, MDC recommends staying aware of your surroundings and always remaining on the trail.
Agents of Discovery is available for download through the App Store for Apple products or Google Play for Android devices.