Bear Valley, Hermann, MO
Bear Valley, Hermann, MO
Bear Valley, Hermann, MO
Bear Valley, Hermann, MO, Field View
Bear Valley, Hermann, MO, Lake View
Bear Valley, Hermann, MO, Field View
 Bear Valley, Hermann, MO, House View
Bear Valley, Hermann, MO, Field View
Bear Valley is a 789 acre Nature Reserve located just miles from historic
Hermann, MO.   Acquired in 1993 by Walmar Investment Company to protect
and to preserve one of Missouri’s richest forests, Bear Valley has recently been
entered into the Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) Forest
Stewardship Program.  The goal of the Forest Stewardship Program is to
“…protect , manage, maintain, and enhance [natural ] resources.”

What makes Bear Valley unique is that it falls within the Missouri River Hills of
southern Warren and Montgomery Counties.  This area contains an interesting
mix of soils and topography.  This is where the glaciers converged into the
Ozark Mountains.
dominated mostly by oaks and hickories.  White, northern red, black, chinkapin, and
post oak are the most dominant large tree (overstory) species.  Hickories such as
shagbark, bitternut, pignut, and mocker nut are scattered, but comprise a consistent
part of the forest.

Other significant, but sometimes less common species, include black cherry, black
maple and American elm.  Some of the more common small tree (understory) and
hawthorn.
This area consists of Missouri’s largest block of Consequently, it is of and
unusual amphibians.  These forests also support strong numbers of deer,
turkey, squirrels, and one of Missouri’s only remaining populations of
ruffed grouse.

Historically, these upland forests were maintained through a variety of
natural disturbances such as fire, storm events, and periodic insect and
disease infestations. These disturbances opened the canopy of the forest
through mortality of the weakened trees.
This provided sunlight to the forest floor allowing young, healthy oaks to
regenerate the forest.  Oak trees are considered shade intolerant - this means
that they are unable to effectively reproduce beneath their own shade. If you
walkthrough a dense canopied forest of the upland hardwood type, you
typically do not find many oak seedlings or saplings in the understory. This is
because there is not adequate sunlight for the young trees to survive to
maturity.
As a result, forests are becoming more dense than they would have
been historically, and are gaining an understory of fire intolerant/shade
tolerant species such as sugar maple, which allow very little sunlight to
the forest floor.  Faced with these vegetation (oak regeneration,
shrubs, grasses and wildflowers) which once thrived.
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Bear Valley, Hermann, MO