From the Missouri Conservationist Magazine
June 2004 Issue

Back Cover

Desert Dweller

image of prickly pear cactusPrickly pear cactus blooms from May to July in dry areas, including glades, roadsides and open hillsides, in south and central Missouri. What looks like paddle-shaped leaves on the plant are actually thick stems. Prickly pear's tiny leaves, guarded by spines and hairlike bristles, are distributed over the stem's surface. -- Jim Rathert

Also in this issue

An Angler's Guide to Mark Twain Lake

Where else can you fish on a lake named for your favorite author?

A Prairie in the Swamp

Desert-like sand prairies are disappearing from southeastern Missouri.

hellbender, a large brown salamander resting in gravelly streambed

What's Hurting Our Hellbenders?

Our largest salamanders are declining at an alarming rate. Learn what you can do to help them.

Cottonmouth snake

Cottonmouth Confusion

Odds are that the snake you see in the water is not venomous.

This Issue's Staff:

Editor - Tom Cwynar
Managing Editor - Bryan Hendricks
Art Director - Ara Clark
Artist - Dave Besenger
Artist - Mark Raithel
Photographer - Jim Rathert
Photographer - Cliff White
Staff Writer - Jim Low
Staff Writer - Joan McKee
Circulation - Laura Scheuler