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From Missouri Conservationist: July 2016

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


Start ‘Em on Squirrels was a great article that brought back many memories. As a kid, sitting in a blind wasn’t for me, but walking through the woods, seeing, smelling, and feeling everything was my cup of tea. One big difference between your article and my experience — the gun. I had to use my dad’s old .22 single shot. I became an excellent shooter. Thank you for the memories you fired up and thanks for the great magazine.

Gerasim Mayden, Florissant

Agent Notes

I enjoyed Paul Veatch’s Agent Notes in the April issue regarding stocking trout in the Eleven Point River. I helped Conservation Agent Gene Woolverton several times, from about 1969–1971. He was a tremendous agent and a good friend, and was a stickler for going by the rules and regulations established by the Conservation Commission. He was a good one.

Mabe Davidson, Branson

Sweet Sounds

I enjoyed your article on the indigo bunting. It has a real sweet sound. I listened to it on YouTube.

Jerry O’Neill, Wentworth

May Issue

You put together the most informative and best magazine you’ve ever put out [May]. What Is It? is one of my favorites. The indigo bunting is a beautiful bird. I can’t wait to read Start ‘Em on Squirrels, as well as Grazing for Conservation. I had to say thank you. It is better than any book I’ve read, and I’m keeping this one.

Carolyn Higginbotham, Stanberry

Prairie Management

I was so very pleased by your prairie management article in the May issue [Grazing for Conservation]. More states now are beginning to realize the value of original prairie and are establishing and/or managing their prairie close to original prairie ecosystem ideas.

I know you get great satisfaction and very visible appreciation from the results of your efforts. Keep up the good work.

Glen Snell, via email

River Warriors

Your article, River Warriors, brought a smile to my face.

Seven years ago, while teaching in Washington, my colleagues invited me to join them in a river cleanup. Little did I know I would be riding a small motorboat across the wide Missouri River in pursuit of the most bizarre castoffs. I’ll never forget the laughs we had at finding a paddleboard, a bouncy horse, and an empty bottle of Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup.

This experience definitely brought us closer together as a team, and remains one of my most favorite adventures. I’m so happy to see that river cleanup efforts remain underway in several communities across Missouri.

Ward Behle, Sedalia

Nature’s Beauty

The wooded scene with the gorgeous natural lighting on pages 10 and 11 in the June issue [Nature’s True Value] really caught my eye. The lit path through those trees makes me want to follow it and see where it would take me. Another place of beauty, I am sure.

Ramona Allen, Sedalia


Your June issue gave a good description of watersnakes [Ask MDC; Page 5]. The midland watersnake’s coloration can resemble a cottonmouth’s, which can lead to a bite on our creek. A key difference is that copperheads swim with their body on top of the water while watersnakes generally have only their head intermittently above water.

Bob Kipfer, Springfield

Reader Photo

The Velveteen Deer

Steve Freeman of St. Charles captured this photo last summer of a buck in velvet over his backyard fence. “We have been fortunate for the past 25 years to have one of the last remaining parcels of undeveloped land in St. Charles abutting our backyard,” said Freeman. “Unfortunately, this 30-acre lot has now been sold and is being subdivided into smaller lots for homes. The deer and all the wildlife have moved on.” But the avid hunter and angler and his wife are now the proud owners of land in Franklin County. “We’ve found the perfect spot where I can have a field of my own as my backyard.”

This Issue's Staff

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