Dark Cypress Swamp Unit of Duck Creek Conservation Area


Turkey Hunting is Closed on this area for the Remainder of the 2017 Spring Season due to Areawide Flooding at Mingo NWR and Duck Creek CA Effective May 2, 2017

Driving Directions

From Advance, take Route C west 7 miles, take County Road 614 north 1 mile to Greenbrier, then Route W north 3 miles, and County Road 604 east for 0.75 mile then turn right (south) for 0.25 mile. The road dead ends at a private drive where the entrance to the area is on the left.


This area consists of restored wetlands, bottomland forest and swamp communities. Wetlands were restored through the Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) in cooperation with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

There is an elevated road crossing Dark Cypress which provides access to private property to the south and divides the area into two large main pools with open marsh and reforested areas.

Each pool is bounded by low, broad levees and contains many manmade topographical features such as habitat mounds, meandering sloughs and shallow depressions. These features are designed to capture and retain receding flood waters from the Castor River Diversion Channel and provide diverse wetland habitats ranging from semi-permanent pools with exposed mud flats to higher sites which occasionaly are flooded for a few days at a time.

About This Area

Duck Creek Conservation Area is now comprised of three units. In addition to the main area on Highway 51, there are two additional units. The Dark Cypress Swamp Unit of Duck Creek Conservation Area occupies the basin where the vast, original Dark Cypress Swamp existed at the time of settlement, so this name has been applied to this parcel. The area formerly named Dark Cypress Swamp, southwest of this Unit along Route C, is now the Greenbrier Unit of Duck Creek.

Dark Cypress Swamp is in southern Bollinger County where the Ozark foothills meet the level floodplain formed when the ancient Mississippi River flowed through the Advance Lowlands.

Much of the area was forested as recently as 40 years ago. Subsequent drainage and conversion to farmland left only the wettest land uncut and intact.

In 2005, the Department purchased the 790-acre area from The Little River Drainage District. It had already been enrolled in WRP by the Drainage District, so the restoration process began shortly after MDC assumed ownership.

Crader Ditch and Hawker Creek (near the east and south property lines), and the nearby Diversion Channel all influence area vegetation through period flooding.

Dark Cypress Swamp supports a variety of migratory birds, including waterfowl as well as resident swamp and cottontail rabbits, otter, raccoon, opossum, bobcat, and squirrels.

General Information




Owned by MDC

  • This Unit is managed by staff of the Duck Creek Conservation Area.
  • Use or possession of lead shot is prohibited.

(Activity Explanations)
(Population Definition)
Bird Watching  Get the Audubon Society of Missouri Conservation Area Bird List. Designated an Important Bird Area by Audubon Missouri.  
Dog Training  Dog training and field trials are prohibited.  Hunters may use hunting and retrieving dogs; hunters must maintain control over their dogs and keep them leashed when not in the process of hunting.  
Hunting-Deer Fair population. Deer regulations are subject to annual changes. Please refer to the Fall Deer and Turkey Booklet for current regulations.  
Hunting-Dove Fair population. September 1 through October 14.  Non-toxic shot only.  
Hunting-Other Fair population. September 1-October 14.  
Hunting-Rabbit Good population. October 1-14 and from the end of waterfowl season through Feb 15. Non-toxic shot only when using shotgun.  
Hunting-Squirrel Good population. October 1-14 and from the end of waterfowl season to February 15. Non-toxic shot only when using shotgun.  
Hunting-Turkey Good population. Fall firearms allowed through October 14. Non-toxic shot only. Turkey regulations are subject to annual changes. Please refer to the Spring Turkey or Fall Deer and Turkey Booklet for current regulations.  
Hunting-Waterfowl – Morning Draw Good population. Hunting assigned by morning draw at Duck Creek CA. Hunting ends 1p.m. daily. Early teal, goose, late goose seasons and light goose order are self check-in unless posted otherwise. Non-toxic shot only.  

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Conservation Department Facilities
Facility Item Name Count Comments
Parking Lot   These parking lots are along the main road into the area.  

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Feature Item Name Count Size Comments
Named Wetland Dark Cypress Swamp 790.00 acres Restored wetland through the Wetland Reserve Program.  

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Land Cover Types
Land Type Acres Comments
Wetland 790.00 This is restored wetland through the WRP program. 
Total Area Acres:790.00 

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Designated Trails
Trail Name Trail Type Length
No Designated Trails

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Shooting Range General Information

This area has no shooting ranges.

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