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Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery, Branson

4.7
Wildlife Area · Nature / Park
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Learn about trout culture, fishing, and conservation at Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery. The trout-rearing facility includes a conservation center, as well as a network of paths for hiking, viewing wildlife, and access to fishing areas. The hatchery raises between 350,000 and 400,000 rainbow and brown trout each year. Examine the species on display in aquariums, catch an informative film in the auditorium, and learn more about the process of spawning and egg development in the conservation center. You can feed the fish by purchasing fish food from a machine, so come prepared with quarters. Guided tours are available daily during peak season. Using our online itinerary creator, Branson attractions like Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
2,007 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • Stopped by on the recommendation from a coworker. Was a nice little side trip that didn't take much time and the kids enjoyed it. There was a short educational video and a large aquarium window for....  more
    Stopped by on the recommendation from a coworker. Was a nice little side trip that didn't take much time and the kids enjoyed it. There was a short educational video and a large aquarium window for....  more »
  • This a very educational free excursion that I would highly recommend. There is an eight minute video that I suggest to watch before so you can learn the process and inner workings of the hatchery... 
    This a very educational free excursion that I would highly recommend. There is an eight minute video that I suggest to watch before so you can learn the process and inner workings of the hatchery...  more »
  • Get there at the right time for a tour, and you will learn so much! Bring quarters to feed the fish. We all really loved this. And it’s a free activity! 
    Get there at the right time for a tour, and you will learn so much! Bring quarters to feed the fish. We all really loved this. And it’s a free activity!  more »
Google
  • It’s a cool place to visit. You can feed the fish here ( don’t forget to take quarter dollar with you or you can get it from reception). Seeing dam was so cool. There are few live snakes. Kids would enjoy. It is always interesting to study about wild animals.
  • Five minutes down the road from the Table Rock Dam/Dewey Short Visitor Center is the fish hatchery where Missouri Fish & Wildlife raises brown and rainbow trout—which aren’t native to Missouri--to stock Missouri’s lakes and streams. They opened in 1958 and can raise up to 800,000 trout each year, then release them when they reach 12 inches in approximately 15-18 months. They have tours every hour on the weekdays, but the 8-minute video there is informative, too. You can feed the fish there and watch thousands of them go crazy when you do. There are signs and employees to give lots of interesting facts throughout the hatchery. They also have several amphibians and reptiles there, including a two-headed Western Rat Snake! Plan to spend at least an hour there.
  • We bought our fishing license here. The staff are kind and courteous. The 25¢ fish feed machine gave my 4-year old and handful of pellets, with which he proceeded to dump into the water all at once... Fun! We got another handful and I showed him how to get much more enjoyment out of it by young on a few pellets at a time. We've been fishing for trout the past couple months in Kansas City with nothing to show for it. It's nice to see that these elusive creatures actually exist! They had some huge ones here that have obviously been eating pretty good. We ended up fishing at Cooper lake where we, unsurprisingly, caught nothing! A couple of other anglers managed to catch one or two. Guess it just wasn't our day today either. One day... Maybe
  • So, I came here with my family and extended family with included 5 kids and 3 parents. As much as I really wanted to like this place, we all found a little boring. After about 20 minutes, all the kids were ready to go. The hatchery did have educational elements, but they were not curated and only consisted of 1 or two small kiosks and very small main visitors center. Mask mandates were not being enforced in case that matters to you) There was a small aquarium but it was only about 9 feet-ish (approx) in viewing length so adults and children were all in very close proximity to view it. After about 7-8 minutes, we were done seeing everything that was of interest in the small visitors center, so we went outside to see the actual hatcheries. Once we walked outside, were greeted with a beautiful view of a dam and the some caged fences pool where the trout are raised from minos to larger fish. Other than reading some scattered informational plaques and paying 25 cents to feed trout, there was literally nothing else to do. I think a curated tour would have awesome. I love the fact that this hatchery tries to educate kids and adults on raising trout, I just wish there has been more to see or do. With that said, visiting here is all free, so I’m not complaining in any way, I’m just giving you my opinion on our experience here. Your experience here might differ then mine so definitely check it out.
  • I love coming here! It is so cool to learn about wildlife in the area and to see all the fish! Also a great place to see some cool birds!

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