I Am Conservation

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From Missouri Conservationist: Dec 2014

Howard Turner stands in a pasture with some of his cattle near Ellington, Missouri. Turner is one of the few farmers who live in the elk restoration zone, a -square-mile area in and around the Peck Ranch Conservation Area. Most of the land ( percent) in the elk zone is public. When Turner heard about the Conservation  plan to restore elk to the area, he was all for it. I am Conservation 12-2014He was also interested in habitat management assistance offered by the Department and called Private Land Conservationist Michael Gaskins to learn more. “Howard had already been establishing food plots and such,” said Gaskins, “so we talked about more involved habitat practices such as open woodland management that could be done on his property, and this seemed to fascinate him.” Gaskins said that future plans include a prescribed burn on the woodland stand to increase plant diversity on the woodland floor and forage for elk, deer, and other wildlife.  Turner's pasture management program has encouraged high-quality forage in his fields that benefits his livestock as well as foraging elk. He  seen any of the elk yet, but he knows they have been in his food plots. Turner thinks restoring elk is a good idea and an important heritage for his grandkids to inherit. “I would like the elk to get to a sizeable enough herd that we could hunt them,” said Turner.

—photograph by David Stonner

This Issue's Staff

Editor In Chief - Nichole LeClair Terrill
Managing Editor - vacant
Art Director - Cliff White
Staff Writer/Editor - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Jim Low
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Designer - Stephanie Thurber
Circulation - Laura Scheuler