Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center

The Morrison Knudsen Nature Center offers a one-of-a-kind fish and wildlife experience on a 4.6-acre site along the Boise River Greenbelt near downtown Boise.

The Nature Center's stream walk and education building provide a glimpse of Idaho. The Idaho Fish and Game MK Nature Center offers a unique wildlife experience on a 4.6-acre site along the Boise River Greenbelt. Admission is always free! The StreamWalk is free and open dawn to dusk all year and underwater viewing windows give visitors a fish-eye view of the world. The Visitor Center has a museum a

Operating as usual

06/22/2021

The nature center is now home to two fawns and their does. This little one was spotted this morning. If you are lucky enough to see a fawn, please remember to quietly observe from a distance. If you want a photo, please use your zoom feature to capture photos—do not approach the deer. While somewhat tolerant of people, they are still wild animals that need their space. Being respectful of their needs will help these wild babies grow up healthy and strong.

The nature center is now home to two fawns and their does. This little one was spotted this morning. If you are lucky enough to see a fawn, please remember to quietly observe from a distance. If you want a photo, please use your zoom feature to capture photos—do not approach the deer. While somewhat tolerant of people, they are still wild animals that need their space. Being respectful of their needs will help these wild babies grow up healthy and strong.

05/26/2021

The visitor’s center will be CLOSED until noon tomorrow, Thursday, May 27, for a power outage. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please feel free to stop by and enjoy a stroll on the paths.

The visitor’s center will be CLOSED until noon tomorrow, Thursday, May 27, for a power outage. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please feel free to stop by and enjoy a stroll on the paths.

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 05/25/2021

A geranium, honeysuckle, and a great blue heron all seen during a break in today’s unsettled weather. Come over and see what you can discover!

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 05/19/2021

Wood’s rose and mint flowers. Members of the mint family have square stems. You can see the edges of the stem in the photo. Check them out on your next visit.

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 05/17/2021

The nature center still has some native plants for sale! They are beautiful additions to your yard along with being attractive to pollinators. You may purchase plants during regular hours, Tuesday - Sunday, 10am - 3pm. On behalf of pollinators, thank you for your support!

05/11/2021

The three-legged doe enjoying some dogwood as a snack. We are not sure how her back leg was injured, but suspect she was hit by a car. By the time she started coming to the nature center, the break had healed, leaving her with a much-shortened rear leg. However, she gets around well on three legs and we are glad she enjoys the nature center. If you encounter her or other deer, please remember to quietly watch from a distance and give them space.

The three-legged doe enjoying some dogwood as a snack. We are not sure how her back leg was injured, but suspect she was hit by a car. By the time she started coming to the nature center, the break had healed, leaving her with a much-shortened rear leg. However, she gets around well on three legs and we are glad she enjoys the nature center. If you encounter her or other deer, please remember to quietly watch from a distance and give them space.

05/10/2021

Luna, posing along the Greenbelt, wants to remind visitors to be responsible dog owners and please not bring your dogs on the nature center grounds. Even well-mannered dogs can disturb wildlife, especially in spring when many wild babies are around. Service dogs, as defined by the ADA, are always welcome.

Luna, posing along the Greenbelt, wants to remind visitors to be responsible dog owners and please not bring your dogs on the nature center grounds. Even well-mannered dogs can disturb wildlife, especially in spring when many wild babies are around. Service dogs, as defined by the ADA, are always welcome.

05/06/2021

The blur you see in this photo is the fanning of this worker bee’s wings. Bees fan the hive to cool it and evaporate water from nectar during the process of producing honey. Given that she is not on honey cells, she is probably working to cool the hive on this warm afternoon. The rear ends of the bees you see in the comb cells are workers tending larvae, cleaning the cells or napping!

The blur you see in this photo is the fanning of this worker bee’s wings. Bees fan the hive to cool it and evaporate water from nectar during the process of producing honey. Given that she is not on honey cells, she is probably working to cool the hive on this warm afternoon. The rear ends of the bees you see in the comb cells are workers tending larvae, cleaning the cells or napping!

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 05/06/2021

Anemone and blue flax blooming at the nature center. The song sparrows are singing and the yellow warblers have just arrived for the summer. Stop by to see what you can find.

05/05/2021

These two mule deer does spent the morning tucked in this quiet corner outside of the building.

These two mule deer does spent the morning tucked in this quiet corner outside of the building.

05/05/2021

The Friends of MK Nature Center has made many projects possible through donations to the organization. As Idaho Gives wraps up on May 6, please consider making a donation to help fund some wonderful projects. Every bit helps! Your support is much appreciated.

The Friends of MK Nature Center has made many projects possible through donations to the organization. As Idaho Gives wraps up on May 6, please consider making a donation to help fund some wonderful projects. Every bit helps! Your support is much appreciated.

05/04/2021

Hive happenings—-Meet the new queen bee! This new queen recently hatched from a queen cell that the worker bees created after the loss of their queen. She will take a mating flight in the next few days, returning to the hive where she will begin laying eggs for many new generations of honey bees. See if you can spot the queen on your next visit. She will eventually be marked to make her easier for visitors to spot in the hive.

Hive happenings—-Meet the new queen bee! This new queen recently hatched from a queen cell that the worker bees created after the loss of their queen. She will take a mating flight in the next few days, returning to the hive where she will begin laying eggs for many new generations of honey bees. See if you can spot the queen on your next visit. She will eventually be marked to make her easier for visitors to spot in the hive.

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 05/04/2021

The nature center still has native plants for sale! You can purchase them whenever the nature center is open. Stop by and check them out. These plants will attract native pollinating insects and hummingbirds.

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 05/03/2021

The nature center still has native plants available for sale. You can order online at https://plantsale.idahonativeplants.org. Pick-up is today, May 3 from 11am-6pm in the nature center’s courtyard. Thank you for supporting the plant sale and helping out our native pollinators!!

04/26/2021

The antics of this litter of baby squirrels are sure to make you smile. They might not be native, but they certainly are cute. See if you can spot them on your next visit.

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 04/23/2021

The observation hive was recently moved to accommodate some work under the building. The bees arrived back earlier in the week where they stayed in a nuc box. This afternoon, they were moved back into the hive. It appears that the queen died, but the workers have already created several queen cells that we will watch carefully to see if they hatch, providing a new queen for the colony. There’s never a dull moment with the bees in the spring! Make sure to check out the hive on your next visit.

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 04/16/2021

Spring seems to come and go so quickly! Stop by the MK Nature Center this weekend to catch it before it's gone!

Photos from Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center's post 04/15/2021

The Pahove Chapter of the Idaho Native Plant Society will be holding their annual plant sale April 28th (members) and April 29th (public). Order online (https://idahonativeplants.org/pahove/) and curbside pick-up your order on May 1-2 at MK Nature Center.

Plant native plants to attract native pollinators and create important habitat!

04/07/2021

We want to thank our visitors for your patience as the parking lot was being redesigned. The end is near, but the lot is NOT yet open. Please continue to access the nature grounds via the entrances along the Greenbelt and Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park. The parking lot and nature center building are scheduled to reopen next week.

We want to thank our visitors for your patience as the parking lot was being redesigned. The end is near, but the lot is NOT yet open. Please continue to access the nature grounds via the entrances along the Greenbelt and Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park. The parking lot and nature center building are scheduled to reopen next week.

Southern Idaho residents encouraged to temporarily remove bird feeders due to a suspected outbreak of salmonellosis 03/08/2021

Southern Idaho residents encouraged to temporarily remove bird feeders due to a suspected outbreak of salmonellosis

https://idfg.idaho.gov/press/southern-idaho-residents-encouraged-temporarily-remove-bird-feeders-due-suspected-outbreak

Southern Idaho residents encouraged to temporarily remove bird feeders due to a suspected outbreak of salmonellosis After reports of sick and dying birds began to reach biologists in northern Idaho, it appears that salmonellosis, also commonly known as salmonella, might have been detected in southern Idaho. Salmonellosis is a common and generally fatal bird disease. Wild birds that frequent feeders in the winter....

[03/05/21]   ATTENTION VISITORS—The visitor’s center and the main parking lot will be closed beginning Monday, March 8. The grounds will remain open and accessible via the entrances at Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park and the Greenbelt. This project is expected to be completed to allow us to reopen April 11. We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your patience. The end product will be a new parking lot for our visitors.

[03/03/21]   As many visitors have discovered, the nature center parking lot is a bit crowded. While our neighbors at the construction site are working hard to complete their work, visitors might want to access the nature center via Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park for the time being. We appreciate your patience look forward to having a new parking lot later this spring.

03/03/2021

Lovely afternoon at the nature center. The unseasonably warm temperatures brought several butterflies out to fly over the Alpine Lake. They were probably Milbert’s tortiseshells, an early season butterfly resident. Watch for them as you enjoy a sunny afternoon.

Lovely afternoon at the nature center. The unseasonably warm temperatures brought several butterflies out to fly over the Alpine Lake. They were probably Milbert’s tortiseshells, an early season butterfly resident. Watch for them as you enjoy a sunny afternoon.

02/26/2021

It’s pretty amazing how wind and snow can twist a tree and snap it off. This is the back side of the cottonwood that came down during the mid-February snowstorm. We will be working with an arborist to get the tree cleaned up, but still leave some branches in the water as structure for the fish.

It’s pretty amazing how wind and snow can twist a tree and snap it off. This is the back side of the cottonwood that came down during the mid-February snowstorm. We will be working with an arborist to get the tree cleaned up, but still leave some branches in the water as structure for the fish.

Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center updated their business hours. 02/25/2021

Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center updated their business hours.

Idaho Department of Fish and Game MK Nature Center updated their business hours.

[02/17/21]   The nature grounds are once again open. Saturday’s damage to the bridge railing has been repaired and the bridge is once again safe for visitors. We appreciate your patience and look forward to seeing you soon.

02/16/2021

The nature center grounds remain closed until further notice. A large tree fell over the main bridge on Saturday, damaging a section of the railing. In order to keep our visitors safe, the grounds will be closed. We appreciate your patience and look forward to reopening soon. The building is open Tuesday-Friday from 10am - 3pm.

The nature center grounds remain closed until further notice. A large tree fell over the main bridge on Saturday, damaging a section of the railing. In order to keep our visitors safe, the grounds will be closed. We appreciate your patience and look forward to reopening soon. The building is open Tuesday-Friday from 10am - 3pm.

[02/13/21]   ATTENTION VISITORS—The nature center grounds are CLOSED!! Numerous tree limbs are down and the snow weight on branches make for hazardous conditions. Please DO NOT enter the grounds. Your respect for this closure is appreciated.

02/09/2021

The nature center’s new kiosk is taking shape. Funded through generous donations to the Friends of MK Nature Center, the kiosk will serve dual functions for both maintenance and education. We are excited to seeing this project moving forward.

The nature center’s new kiosk is taking shape. Funded through generous donations to the Friends of MK Nature Center, the kiosk will serve dual functions for both maintenance and education. We are excited to seeing this project moving forward.

02/02/2021

Visitors are not the only ones enjoying today’s mild temperature and sunshine. The bees are enjoying it, too!!

Visitors are not the only ones enjoying today’s mild temperature and sunshine. The bees are enjoying it, too!!

[01/28/21]   The main entry to the grounds is open again! What looked to be an intentional blocking of the path turned out to be done by none other than Mother Nature! Last night’s wind moved the construction fence and very neatly blocked the path. We apologize for the inconvenience and hope the fence will remain in place.

[01/28/21]   ATTENTION VISITORS—-The main entrance to the nature center grounds is temporarily closed. This is for your safety as construction work is occurring near that corner today. Please use the entrance at Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park or the Greenbelt entrance. We apologize for any inconvenience and will let you know when the entrance has re-opened.

01/26/2021

The nature center’s observation hive is always helping us learn something new, even in winter when the bees are pretty quiet. Or so we thought! Several times the staff has noticed a sudden increase in activity. The bees were running around the hive, filling the tunnel and going outside. We were baffled since it’s too cold for them to fly. After visiting with our beekeeping mentor, we learned that the bees were engaged in cleansing behavior. Simply and somewhat indelicately put, the bees had to poo! This behavior keeps the hive clean during the winter. When the bees gotta go in the winter, they do so en masse! Fascinating!

01/20/2021

We want to remind our visitors that the nature center building will be closed on weekends beginning this coming weekend, January 23-24. This closure will continue through the weekend of March 6-7. The building is open Tuesday-Friday from 10am-3pm. The grounds remain open from sunrise to sunset each day. Enjoy your visit!

Videos (show all)

As the day warms, the bees become more active.  Quite a few workers are returning with the bright orange pollen you can ...
The juvenile mink were out exploring, playing, and doing a little bickering first thing this morning.  These members of ...
The bees have formed a bee beard.  This behavior helps ventilate the hive on warm days.
Here’s the observation hive entrance as the bees were swarming.  Not all bees leave during a swarm.  The hive still has ...
The observation hive has swarmed!  Here you can see and hear the cloud of bees.  They are beginning to cluster high in t...
Here’s a view inside the observation hive of a worker doing a waggle dance.  This bee-havior tells other workers about a...
Our bees are busy gathering pollen and nectar from flowers at the nature center and beyond.
The bees have moved into the observation hive!
Here’s some information about an intervention we did to boost our observation hive here at the nature center.
This song sparrow is both vigorously defending his territory and hoping to impress the girls.  Song sparrows are common ...

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Address


600 S Walnut St
Boise, ID
83712

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:00 - 15:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 15:00
Thursday 09:00 - 15:00
Friday 09:00 - 15:00
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