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From Missouri Conservationist: Feb 2015

Submissions reflect readers’ opinions and might be edited for length and clarity.

Skeleton Trees

I enjoyed Gladys Richter’s article about sycamore trees [November]. I live in Elk County, Kansas, and the sycamore is plentiful here. Lots of them along the creeks and rivers and in any ditch that has water during part of the year. Their foliage has been unusually striking this year, and their form and shape always unique. We had a London plane tree in our yard when we lived in Andover, and my kids and grandkids delighted in climbing in its sturdy branches. I enjoy the many varieties of trees we have and the sycamore is a favorite.

Lula “Billy” Harrison, via email

Hooked on Old Lures

Great article and photographs regarding old lures [December]. I was especially taken with the quantity of lures shown, as I have recently resurrected a number of my late father’s lures and now have them displayed in our family room for our grandchildren to see. Thanks to your article, I have gleaned much additional information about his lures. Dad and mom took my brother and me to lakes and rivers all over Missouri showing us the natural beauty of our state. Thanks so very much.

Tom Stevener, Innsbrook

Having acquired my dad’s old tackle box filled with old fishing lures, some of which I have used for more than 30 years, I am fascinated by Kevin Richard’s article. I don’t read much, but I keep my Missouri Conservationist in a strategic location, and I read many of the articles several times.

Jim Beasley, Table Rock Lake

After the Harvest

Us old-timers would never ask the question of what to do with game “waste” because there isn’t any! For fish, run everything left over through a meat grinder or a heavy-duty blender. Dig a 2-foot deep hole in your mulch pile and put it in with all the potato peels, etc. from around the house. For deer bones, cut them or crack them to expose the marrow and boil them for an hour. Use tongs to take them out of the pot, and use a small knife to scrape off any remaining soft tissue. You have made soup stock. Put the bones in your fireplace or camp fire to burn them, then crush them up to go into the mulch pile, also. Your garden will love it next spring. Do not add anything to a landfill that can be reused!

Chuck Dohogne, via email

Trapping Terminology

I enjoyed the article in the January issue, The Lure of Trapping. It was a well-written and informative article explaining how trapping gets you engaged with nature, how it’s important for the betterment of other wildlife, and also tells the different reasons why people trap. However, in this article where the different traps are explained, one trap was described as a “leghold” trap. This terminology gives a wrong impression on the traps that we use. The correct terminology would be a “foothold” trap, as the trap is designed to capture the animal by the foot, right across the pad where the animal would be comfortable while being restrained in the trap. Other than that, it was a great article, and I commend Jim Low for writing it. It informs the public of how trapping really is and destroys the myths that many people have about trapping.

Robbie Page, New Franklin

Editor’s Note: You are correct, we should have changed that reference to the more-accurate term foothold trap. Thank you for helping us make this distinction.

Army to Agent

I’m in the U.S. Army, currently in South Korea. My dream job when I get out is to become a Missouri conservation agent, but I have questions.

Mason Moore, via Facebook

Conservation Department: Visit our careers pages at mdc.mo.gov/node/8051 and check out our video on being an agent at mdc.mo.gov/node/8056

Reader Photo

Snow Drift

Jill Payne, of Miami, Missouri, took this photo of snow geese in a field of corn stubble near Grand Pass Conservation Area. “I have a huge passion for wildlife photography, waterfowl being one of my favorites,” said Payne. “I spend a lot of hours as an amateur wildlife photographer taking pictures through every season.” Payne said she and her family love the outdoors and spend the majority of their time outside, camping, fishing, and participating in other activities. “I spend a lot of my time in the countryside, near the river where we grew up,” she said, “but, whether it’s close to home or visiting miles away, anywhere I can be outside with a camera experiencing nature through a camera lens, I enjoy every minute of it.”

This Issue's Staff

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