I was totally in love with the Ozarks (still am for that matter) and really enjoyed the milder climate when we moved to Shell Knob 22 years ago.
We have 4 distinct seasons in SW Missouri - some longer or shorter than others - depending upon the year. What took me a while to understand, is that along with the increased sunshine and scarcity of snow, came a climate that encouraged insect and critter growth.
It's not one of my favorite topics, but personal safety and health concerns need to be known by potential Shell Knob residents.
I saw an article in one of our local papers recently that brought this to mind. The topic was "Toxic Brown Recluse Spiders Pose Danger".
These creatures live up north too, but our climate seems to make them thrive. They are one of three spiders in the USA that are venomous. They come into homes in the winter to seek warmth. Unfortunately, this warmth can be found inside an old shoe or slipper, or in a box in the back of a closet.
They actually want to stay away from humans and are very shy, which is why they hide and most bites happen by accident. If you put that shoe on and the spider feels trapped, it may bite in self defense.
It is recommended that a cold compress be applied to the bite and that a doctor be seen as soon as possible. Take the spider with you so it can be confirmed that it is actually a brown recluse bite.
On the bright side, if you keep clutter out of your closets and hire a good exterminator on a regular schedule, you will probably never see one of these unwelcome visitors.
Call Joan for Shell Knob or Table Rock Lake information 417-858-2209