Landowner Assistance

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From Missouri Conservationist: May 2008

On the Ground: Conservation Contractors Help You Help Habitat

If you’d like to implement habitat improvements on your property—but just don’t have the time, equipment or skills—call a local conservation contractor. That’s what Saline County landowner Bob Sellmeyer did when he and his partners wanted to do some edge feathering on their 120-acre farm. Chain saw-intensive edge feathering is the practice of creating instant shrubby cover for quail by cutting down and leaving trees along fencerows and crop fields. “I’m too old to be running a chain saw!” Bob said. His Department of Conservation private land conservationist, Brent Vandeloecht, recommended several conservation contractors. “Edge feathering wasn’t something I wanted to take on, and our guy did a real nice job for us,” Bob said. Many conservation contractors have completed Department of Conservation training workshops, which cover topics from forest management to cost-share programs and technical assistance. To find a conservation contractor near you, search our online database.

Bradford Farm Field Day

Tours show native plants at work for quail.

Learn to use native plants for quail habitat enhancement and conservation at the University of Missouri Bradford Research and Extension Center on June 26, from 4 to 8 p.m. Some featured stops include native plants used for wildlife, conservation and landscaping; trailing soybean and native wildflower food plots; invasive species eradication; buffers and edge feathering; and alternative planting mixes for erosion control.

Bradford Farm is just southeast of Columbia. For directions and more information, call (573) 884-7945 or (573) 882-4337.

Don’t Feed the Bears!

Prevention is the key to nuisance bear control.

If you leave out pet food, livestock feed or loaded garbage cans, you might be luring black bears onto your property. Nuisance black bears aren’t common in Missouri, but the southern counties can see a few of them during the spring and summer. This is when mother bears drive away their yearling male cubs. Young males trying to avoid adult males and find food can come into contact with humans.

To keep bears where they belong—in Missouri’s southern forests—keep your property free of temptations. Even unkempt birdfeeders can appeal to hungry bears. If you see a black bear, please report the sighting to the Conservation Department at (575) 882-9880. For more information about preventing and coping with nuisance wildlife, visit online.

This Issue's Staff

Editor In Chief - Ara Clark
Managing Editor - Nichole LeClair
Art Director - Cliff White
Writer/Editor - Tom Cwynar
Staff Writer - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Jim Low
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Designer - Stephanie Ruby
Artist - Dave Besenger
Artist - Mark Raithel
Circulation - Laura Scheuler