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From Missouri Conservationist: Apr 2016

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

Mint Spring

I’ve always enjoyed the Missouri Conservationist, but I enjoyed the February issue even more. The article on Mint Spring Conservation Area [Places to Go] is in the area where I grew up, and where my children grew up. We all played in the waterfall when we were young. My children and cousins go there every chance we get, take lots of food, and picnic for hours. It’s very special to us because my parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents also grew up in that area and walked the same soil we do today. We all appreciated the article and picture.

Mary V. Montcalm, Bland

I Am Conservation

Thank you for the article on the back of the February Conservationist [I Am Conservation] about Allan Appell in Henry County. Thank you Mr. Appell! Good job!

Erwin Dix, Saint Peters

Inspired Outing

My family rarely goes on family outings in the spring, but last year my mother saw an article in the April 2015 issue of the Missouri Conservationist, and we decided to give morel hunting a try. We were genuinely surprised at how fun it was and how tasty the mushrooms were. Now we are hooked and can’t wait for spring. I want to thank you for printing the Missouri Conservationist and for helping my family start a new, fun tradition.

Aubrey Lee, via email

Nature at Night

I absolutely loved the article Discovering Nature at Night [December]. Not only did I think the article was intriguing, but the many beautiful, dark pictures were very mesmerizing. I am a teenager who goes to early morning classes and then school. My days — like many other teenagers’ days — are very busy so I rarely think to stop and appreciate my surroundings. I had absolutely no idea there were so many natural things happening at night like there are in the day. Because of that cool article, I am more inspired to take the time to look up.

Amiefawn Broadbent, Stockton

Conservation Pride

A recent article in the Kansas City Star described how MDC personnel are helping to manage a program to recycle wood from the many ash trees lost to the emerald ash borer (EAB) infestation, which otherwise would end up in landfills or as wood chips. The wood is being given to people who can turn it into furniture and other usable items. Another example of innovative, ecologically sensible action from our conservation department, and also an example of the great working partnerships continually being nurtured by MDC to keep our forests and other natural resources thriving and healthy for the benefit of all. This is a great idea that hopefully will catch on in other areas affected by the EAB.

Every time I read an outstanding new issue of the Conservationist or Xplor, I am so proud to be a lifelong Missourian and a supporter of one of the country’s greatest state conservation organizations. Many citizens may not realize that these publications and other MDC educational materials are invaluable for helping schools and nonprofit nature organizations (such as local Audubon chapters) fulfill their goals of educating the public about the birds, plants, wildlife, and ecosystems of Missouri. Keep up the great work!

Elizabeth Stoakes, Lee’s Summit

Trees Work

With the right trees, anyone can have a natural air freshner. Fruit trees, such as apples, pears, and apricots, have very sweet-scented blossoms. Other trees, such as black walnut and cedar trees, have a scent of their own that is a little tangy but very nice in the late spring. And trees keep air pollution down. In the country, the sky is a gorgeous blue, while in and near the city, it’s slightly off or has a gray tint to it. All because of the amount of trees in the area.

Lynnette Lee, via email

Reader Photo

Polyphemus Moth

Richard Webber of Clinton submitted this photo of a polyphemus moth that visited his flagstone patio. “The moth stayed on the patio for hours in the same place,” said Webber. The polyphemus moth is the second largest moth that occurs in Missouri, and it is named after the giant one-eyed monster of Homer’s Odyssey because of the big eyespots on each hindwing. Adults fly from mid-April through August. Webber and his wife enjoy attracting wildlife, both small and large, to their yard. “We have a bluebird house that birds nest in every year and raise young ones,” said Webber. “We also have several large oak trees and lots of squirrels, and even some deer pass through once in a while.”

This Issue's Staff

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld
Art Director - Cliff White
Associate Editor - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Heather Feeler
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Designer - Les Fortenberry
Designer - Marci Porter
Designer - Stephanie Thurber
Circulation - Laura Scheuler