The Nature Merit Badge is a great Patrol / Troop merit badge activity or can be done easily at Summer Scout Camp.  The Nature Merit Badge is one of the elective merit badges to earn one of the William T Hornaday Awards for Boy Scouts.

If you like the Nature Merit Badge, consider also doing Bird Study, Fish and Wildlife Management, Geology, Insect Study, Mammal Study, Oceanography, Plant Science, Reptile and Amphibian Study, Soil and Water Management, or even Weather.


Scoutmaster Bucky offered this merit badge:

Saturday December 20, 2014

Base Camp
Fort Snelling, MN

11 Scouts

Saturday December 21, 2013

Base Camp
Fort Snelling, MN

7 Scouts

Saturday March 16, 2013

Maple Plain, MN

4 Scouts

Saturday May 1, 2010

Rum River Scout Camp
Ramsey, MN

10 Scouts

Saturday March 14, 2009

Richfield, MN

7 Scouts








Scoutmaster Bucky Class Prep Page:

click here



Scoutmaster Bucky Workbook:

click here



Nature Merit Badge History Page:

click here






source: Boy Scout Requirements, 2015 Edition


1. Name three ways in which plants are important to animals. Name a plant that is protected in your state or region, and explain why it is at risk.


2. Name three ways in which animals are important to plants. Name an animal that is protected in your state or region, and explain why it is at risk.


3. Explain the term "food chain." Give an example of a four-step land food chain and a four-step water food chain.


4. Do all the requirements in FIVE of the following fields:


1. In the field, identify eight species of birds

2. Make and set out a birdhouse OR a feeding station OR a birdbath. List what birds used it during a period of one month


1. In the field, identify three species of wild animals

2. Make plaster casts of the tracks of a wild mammal


1. Show that you can recognize the venomous snakes in your area

2. In the field, identify three species of reptiles or amphibians

3. Recognize one species of toad or frog by voice; OR identify one reptile or amphibian by eggs, den, burrow, or other signs


1. Collect, mount, and label 10 species of insects or spiders

2. Hatch an insect from the pupa or cocoon; OR hatch adults from nymphs; OR keep larvae until they form pupae or cocoons; OR keep a colony of ants or bees through one season

e.  FISH

1. Catch and identify two species of fish

2. Collect four kinds of animal food eaten by fish in the wild


1. Identify five species of mollusks and crustaceans

2. Collect, mount, and label six shells


1. In the field, identify 15 species of wild plants

2. Collect and label the seeds of six plants OR the leaves of 12 plants


1. Collect and identify soils found in different layers of a soil profile

2. Collect and identify five different types of rocks from your area


In most cases all specimens should be returned to the wild at the location of original capture after the requirements have been met. Check with your merit badge counselor for those instances where the return of these specimens would not be appropriate.

Under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, some plants and animals are or may be protected by federal law. The same ones and/or others may be protected by state law. Be sure that you do not collect protected species.

Your state may require that you purchase and carry a license to collect certain species. Check with the wildlife and fish and game official in your state regarding species regulations before you begin to collect.


this page last reviewed and updated - December 2015