Program Mission

Kansas City WildLands is a coalition of resource professionals, private conservation organizations and conservation-minded citizens established to restore and conserve the remnants of Kansas City’s original landscape by involving people in the stewardship of the land.

Relatively undisturbed prairie, glade, savanna and forest natural communities still exist on public lands in the metro area, but they need our help! Over time, these remnant wild places have been overtaken by trees and brush, invaded by exotic plants and deprived of the natural processes that maintained them. In addition to a lack of management, these natural communities also suffer from a lack of recognition and appreciation by the urban public. An equally important dual goal of the WildLands coalition is to involve citizens and metro communities in the care of these lands that represent Kansas City’s natural heritage.

KC Wildlands Projects

Learn more about the KC Wildlands Projects, and how YOU can get involved!

Kansas City WildLands FY 22-23 Accomplishments

  • Accomplishment Logo 2,286

    hours of volunteer restoration and seed work

  • Accomplishment Logo 147

    Pounds of seed collected representing 136 native species

  • Accomplishment Logo 52

    restoration and seed workdays hosted

  • Accomplishment Logo 15

    high quality natural areas sustained

  • Accomplishment Logo 4

    training workshops conducted

Hike a Wildland

The wild lands await! Many people are unaware that there are so many beautiful, undisturbed natural areas in the Kansas City region. Come out and take a walk and visit these living natural history lessons.

Find a Hike Near You.

Currently WildLands volunteers help to restore thirteen remnant sites within the Kansas City metropolitan region. These are some of the most diverse, beautiful places in the Midwest ... we challenge you to visit all 13!

Hike a Wildland

Volunteer with WildLands!

Join us in conserving, protecting, and restoring our wildlands.

Calling all nature enthusiasts! Volunteer with Bridging The Gap’s Kansas City WildLands (KCWL) program! At our workdays, we explain why it’s important protect and restore our native ecosystem, then we split into small groups to remove and treat invasive plants. We work on designated WildLands (native forests and prairies) throughout the metropolitan area, on both sides of the state line.

1,400 people volunteer with BTG each year. Be part of the movement!

Find Volunteer Opportunities

Invasive Species

An under-story shrub in woodlands, Asian bush honeysuckles invades quickly and out-competes native plants. Because it leafs out so early, the shrub steals light from native plants that need a sunny forest floor in spring in order to flower, fruit, and gather energy for the next year. Birds and small animals eat the berries and deposit the seeds elsewhere, spreading this noxious weed. Learn to identify this aggressive invader, and then kill it before it spreads more seeds elsewhere.

Learn more

KCWL Steering Committee

Matt Garrett

Field Biologist
Johnson County Parks and Recreation District

Lance Jessee

Citizen Representative

Ginevera Moore

Midwest Field Representative
The Conservation Fund

Mary Nemecek

Burroughs Audubon Society

Larry Rizzo

Habitat Architects

Chad Scholes

Biology Professor
Rockhurst University

Megan Shumaker

Environmental Chair
Shumaker Family Foundation

Kansas City WildLands Staff

  • Linda Lehrbaum

    Program Manager

  • Ginger Werp

    Program Coordinator

KCWL sponsors + partners

What's happening now

Celebrating Monarch Migration & Hispanic He

Monarch Butterflies and Their Connections Labor Day may be the unofficial end of summer, but September brings changes in our natural world as well. As the air (hopefully) turns cooler, there is a breathtaking natural wonder that unfolds every year: the monarch butterfly migration. Coincidentally, this event aligns with another important celebration – Hispanic Heritage … Continued

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Spotlight On: Native Sunflowers

In a few weeks people from all over will be flocking to sunflower fields in both Missouri and Kansas, aka The Sunflower State. These fields are planted with monocultures of annual sunflowers that provide fun outings, beautiful photo backdrops, and are agriculturally important. But did you know we have several native sunflower species that provide … Continued

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Spring hiking on the wild lands

Spring Has Sprung! The sun is shining, birds are chirping, flowers are blooming, and trails are calling your name. Spring is a great time to Hike a WildLand and see some of the best remnant spaces the Kansas City area has to offer. Before the trees have fully leafed out and the tall grasses have … Continued

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In Appreciation of Winter

Winter’s not as long in Kansas City as it is in, say, Minnesota, but it’s long enough for most of us. While climate change is erratically spiking some very warm days even in December, we can generally count on it being cold, unpredictably icy or snowy, and somewhat gray for at least four months. I … Continued

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