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From Missouri Conservationist: Jul 2015

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

Missouri Waters

My family and I enjoy the waters of southwest Missouri. We spend most of our time fishing. Seems that when we fish, mostly trolling in Bull Shoals Lake, we spend a lot of time picking up the trash from careless boaters. We don’t mind doing so, but sure wish other users of our beautiful waterways would exercise a bit more caution with loose trash in their boat. Bag it and take it out to a proper dumping station. If we all would do a little more to help keep it clean, it can be a great enjoyment to generations to come.

Elmer Davis, via email

I enjoyed the article on Ozark streams [Viva le Dolomieu] in your May issue. The words and photos fully captured the unique beauty of these clear and cool streams of our state, flowing by majestic dolomite bluffs. But, I they are under constant threat from overuse and destructive recreational practices. The legendary Missouri naturalist Leonard Hall told wonderful stories about fishing and camping on these streams in his book, Stars Upstream, published over 60 years ago. As he stated then, “The need to preserve areas that are wild and natural increases in America with each day that goes by; for it has been truly said that ‘wilderness is a resource which can shrink but never grow.’”

Dudley McCarter, via email

The Lures of Fishing

I was born in Fredericktown, Missouri, many years ago. One of my greatest memories was receiving the monthly Missouri Conservationist. My dad would quickly take the magazine and read it from cover to cover. I then got to look and learn from the wonderful stories inside. I was reminded of one when I opened the May issue and read how to make a foam spider fishing lure [How to Bug a Bluegill]. Approximately 56 years ago, I followed the directions in the magazine to make a popping bug from a clothespin. I completed the project and was lucky enough to catch several bass with it. I showed my son how to make the clothes pin bug from scratch, and he was very excited and used it for years.

Dale Bailey, via email

Editor’s Note: To access How to Make a “Popping Bug” for Particular Bass, which appeared in the May 1944 issue of the Missouri Conservationist, visit on.mo.gov/1BMtyC2.

Smokepole Squirrels [May] ... I loved this article. I really like to get a feel for the way people used to hunt and the tools of the trade, and this really captured that.

Daryl Price, via email

Black Bears

Noppadol Paothong’s article on Missouri’s black bears [Plants and Animals] was wonderful. Having hunted black bears in Ontario, Canada, I can relate to his experience. I had a bear try to climb a tree that I was in. Seeing a black bear at a range of 5 feet can be unnerving, much like Noppadol’s experience. It is great that a noble animal like the black bear is making her home in Missouri. I hope the population keeps expanding for this former native animal.

Wayne Munkel, University City

The DIY Outdoorsman

I really enjoy your magazine and all of the information it gives about the outdoors. My favorite articles are the ones that give fishing tips and DIY solutions to outdoor problems, like how to make your own fishing lures. I am a Boy Scout and have found articles in this magazine helpful to my scouting on many occasions. Thank you for this amazing magazine.

Patrick Lynch, via email

Reader Photo

It’s Lunchtime!

Scott O’Dell of Liberty, Missouri, captured this image of a bobcat with a rabbit lunch on one of the trail cameras he maintains on his property near Eagleville, Missouri. He visits the land most weekends. “I enjoy archery and firearms hunting for deer, turkey, and upland birds,” said O’Dell. “The west fork of Big Creek passes through the property. It’s quite diverse ground, typical of northern Missouri hill country.” O’Dell maintains several trail cameras on the land. “We really enjoy seeing pictures of the deer and other wildlife, like bobcats, coyotes, and turkeys,” said O’Dell. “During the fall of 2014, we had a new sighting: a bald eagle was nesting on our south boundary fence row.”

This Issue's Staff

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld
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