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Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium Now Open

The Voice for Missouri Outdoors NOVEMBER 2017 - VOL 78 | NO. 6



NOW IS YOUR CHANCE to join the organization that unites thousands of Missourians with the goal of preserving the state’s immense natural resources. Your actions now will create a better future for generations to come. Visit to become a member of CFM today.

Director’s Message

Conservation Federation Launches Podcast


ommunicating conservation to the masses is no easy task. To be effective, you have to take different avenues to reach different demographics. While older generations may still prefer print media, most younger folks are looking for digital content. Here at the Conservation Federation of Missouri, we are trying to reach as many people as possible with our important messages about conservation. To do so, we continue to expand our communication platforms. CFM is now producing a podcast titled Conservation Federation, and I am serving as the host. A podcast is a digital audio file made available on the Internet for streaming or downloading. It’s like a radio show only it’s not live and can be accessed at any time from a computer or portable media player, like a phone or tablet.

Brandon Butler speaks to former Governor Jay Nixon on the first episode of the Conservation Federation podcast. (Photo: Courtesy of CFM)

Episode 5: Steve Jones and Chris Kossmeyer Explain Captive Cervids and CWD Episode 6: MDC Director Sara Parker Pauley Explains Her Vision for Conservation Episode 7: Glenn Chambers Shares Highlights of his Life and Career Episode 8: Carol Davit and Ken McCarty Talk Prairies and Pollinators Episode 9: Just Before His 99th Birthday Bill Crawford Highlights MDC History Episode 10: Legendary Turkey Biologist John Lewis Explains Restoration

With so many incredible stories to tell, and so many legendary conservationists to tell them, we’ll never run out of topics to cover. The Conservation Federation podcast is also a great tool for recording history. Let us know if you have an idea for a future episode you’d like to hear. Episode One features former Missouri Governor Jay Nixon. It was recorded in the Governor’s office on November 8, 2016, Election Day. From then on I have interviewed many dedicated and inf luential conservationists. Here is the list of the first 10 episodes of Conservation Federation: Episode 1: Governor Jay Nixon Ref lects on his Conservation Efforts Episode 2: Colin O’Mara Discusses the National Wildlife Federation Episode 3: Mark Van Patten Talks Missouri Trout Fishing Episode 4: Joel Vance and Jim Low Discuss Conservation Communications

New episodes are released once a month at a minimum. Future guests will include conservation and political leaders from Missouri and beyond. Conservation Federation is available on iTunes and the CFM website You can subscribe to the podcast to ensure you won’t miss a single episode. If you like what you hear, please share the links on social media and leave us a review.

Yours in Conservation, Brandon Butler Executive Director, CFM NOVEMBER - 2017



Conservation Federation November 2017 - V78 No. 5


OFFICERS Ron Coleman


Gary Van De Velde

1st Vice President

Mossie Schallon

2nd Vice President

Richard Mendenhall Secretary Randy Washburn







Share the Harvest: A Different Perspective


Native Grassland Management Benefits Quail in Missouri

Learn more about the program helping to feed hungry Missourians. Native plants can help grassland birds thrive in the state.


Wonders of Wildlife Opens With Celebration


Find Those Downed Birds


An Ancient Scaup Camp


Fly-in Wilderness Fishing Trip Surpasses Expectations


Harvesting Mature Bucks


An Outdoor Trip in the Rockies

The new aquarium is sure to become a must see destination.

6 8 10

23 36


Brandon Butler

Executive Director & Editor

Rehan Nana

Director of Corporate Relations

Micaela Haymaker

Director of Operations

Laurie Coleman

Membership Director

Jennifer Sampsell

Education & Outreach Coordinator

Tyler Schwartze

Events Manager

Emma Kessinger

Creative Director


Tips on how to stay calm, cool, and collected when you lose sight of a bird. A first hand account of a hunt on a lake discovered by Lewis and Clark. This Canadian trip will have you dreaming about your next adventure. As the debate on harvesting mature bucks continues, read one man's take. Elk hunting in the Colorado Rockies is sure to be a memory-making trip.

Departments 3


Director’s Message Business Alliance Spotlight President's Message Member News Memorials New Members Gear Guide Calendar Affiliate Spotlight Agency News CONSERVATION FEDERATION

Highlights 20 41 49 53 56 57

Cabela's Calendar Yurt Stays at Table Rock State Park NFWF Receives Large Grant KC Zoo Supports Global Conservation Rifle Reloading with Starline How to Process Deer in Warm Weather

CFM Mission: To ensure conservation of Missouri’s wildlife and natural resources, and preservation of our state’s rich outdoor heritage through advocacy, education and partnerships. Conservation Federation is the publication of the Conservation Federation of Missouri (ISSN 1082-8591). Conservation Federation (USPS 012868) is published bi-monthly in January, March, May, July, September and November for subscribers and members. Of each member’s dues, $10 shall be for a year’s subscription to Conservation Federation. Periodical postage paid in Jefferson City, MO and additional mailing offices. Send address changes to: | 573-634-2322

FRONT COVER Wonders of Wildlife Museum and Aquarium Photo: Brandon Butler

Business Alliance

Thank you to all of our Business Alliance members. Platinum

Gold Alps OutdoorZ Bushnell Custom Metal Products Diamond Pet Foods Doolittle Trailer Enbridge, Inc.

G3 Boats Kansas City Zoo Martin Metal MidwayUSA Pure Air Natives Redneck Blinds

Riley Chevrolet Roeslein Alternative Energy, LLC United Country Real Estate US Sun Solar Weston

Learfield Communication, Inc. Lilley’s Landing Resort & Marina Logboat Brewing Missouri Wildflowers Nursery Mitico Moneta Group

National Feather-Craft Co. Simmons SportDOG Brand Starline, Inc. Tiger Hotel

HMI Fireplace Shop Hodgdon Powder Company, Inc. Inn at Grand Glaize Missouri Wine & Grape Board

NW Electric Power Cooperative, Inc. Sierra Bullets, LLC Walter Knoll Florist

Greenbrier Wetland Services Grundy Electric Cooperative, Inc. Hulett Heating & Air Conditioning J&B Outdoors Kansas City Parks and Recreation Kleinschmidt’s Western Store Lewis County Rural Electric Cooperative Meramec Bison Farm, LLC Missouri Conservation Pioneers Missouri Teardrops MTAR

Nick's Family Restaurant Ozark Bait and Tackle Platte-Clay Electric Cooperative, Inc. REMAX Boone Realty Shade Tree Service, Inc. St. Joseph Harley Davidson Tabor Plastics Company Tanks Pawn & Gun Truman’s Bar & Grill United Electric Cooperative, Inc. White River Valley Electric Cooperative

Silver Aberdeen, South Dakota Advantage Metals Recycling Burgers’ Smokehouse Forrest Keeling Nursery G&W Meat & Bavarian Style Sausage Co. Jaguar Land Rover St. Louis

Bronze Association of Missouri Electric Coop. Black Widow Custom Bows, Inc. Drury Hotels Gray Manufacturing Company, Inc.

Iron Bass Pro Shops (Independence) Blue Ridge Bank and Trust Blue Springs School District Blue Springs Park and Recreation Bob McCosh Chevrolet Buick GMC Brown Printing Cap America Central Bank Dickerson Park Zoo Farmer’s Co-op Elevator Association General Printing Service

Your business can benefit by supporting conservation. Contact Rehan Nana: 573-634-2322 or NOVEMBER - 2017


Business Alliance

Missouri Wildflowers Nursery


ince 1984, Missouri Wildflowers Nursery has been growing and selling native plants and seeds. Mervin Wallace, native plant expert and Missouri Wildflowers Nursery owner, and his team provide the highest quality native plants to Missouri and the surrounding states. A longtime supporter of The Conservation Federation of Missouri and many other conservation groups within the state, Mervin and wife, Ginny Wallace, are among the most dedicated conservationists in the state. “I firmly believe that we are all responsible for conserving Missouri’s native plants and wildlife; it’s not just something for other people to do for us. While Missouri has many wild places, those are not enough to support and conserve those species. The nursery gives Missourians the tools and opportunities for everyone to be able to bring a little nature to their own landscapes,” said Mervin.



Three primary factors have contributed to the company’s growth since 1984: • Quality products – They have consistently provided high quality products – plants and seeds – that are genetically native to Missouri and within no more than one generation of wildharvested, maintaining as much wild genetic diversity as possible. • Innovation – The company continually adapts production methods to meet the demand for plants as well as meeting customers’ needs. • Dedicated staff – Mervin’s staff have a passion for native plants and share their knowledge and passion with their customers.

Business Alliance Mervin started the nursery because of his concerns about human impacts on wildlife and native plants. When started there were several nurseries in surrounding states starting to offer natives, but the plants were not genetically native to Missouri – they were species that grow here, but the stock originated from other states. Mervin wanted to make sure that plants used in Missouri came from Missouri. “Native plants and wildlife evolved together, and this is evident in several ways. A wide variety of native beneficial insects require native plants to survive and some are very specific. For example, the caterpillar of the spicebush swallowtail butterfly survives only on sassafras and spicebush. If we lose those plants, we also lose those butterflies. At the same time, most native insects do not use cultivated landscape plants. And adding to that, the vast majority of birds – even seed eaters – require a diet of insects when they are in the nest. In fact, research has shown it can take up to 300 caterpillars to fledge one chickadee. So a landscape without natives will not support nesting birds,” continued Mervin. To increase native plantings, Mervin recommends adding native plants to their yards, businesses, and communities. Mervin also recommends people advocate for the use of natives in public areas. Many large communities are already doing this to support and attract pollinators, Monarch’s and other butterflies, songbirds and hummingbirds. For small areas, starting with potted plants is the easiest and provides the most immediate gratification. Some of the most successful seed plantings are those using glade species on very shallow soil or even over solid rock. When establishing natives from plants or seeds, it is important to use species that will be adapted to the conditions of the site. The Missouri Wildflowers Nursery annual catalog has a wealth of information that will aid in making selections. Find out more information at

DINING WILD on American Beauty Berry.

Our native plants provide birds with seeds, berries, insects and nesting sites. Missouri Wildflowers Nursery PRZOGÁUV#VRFNHWQHW

You need our excellent catalog by mail or online.

Rehan Nana Director of Corporate Relations, CFM (Left) Purple milkweed is similar to common milkweed in flower color and leaf shape, but is more compact and colorful and doesn't spread as much. (Photo: Missouri Wildflowers Nursery) (Top) Mervin Wallace, owner of Missouri Wildflowers Nursery. (Photo: Missouri Wildflowers Nursery)



President’s Message

CFM Affiliations: Strength in Numbers and Action


s I write this message, the Conservation Federation of Missouri (CFM) is just coming off a successful third annual Explore Missouri Outdoors: St Louis event which was held at the Nine Network of Public Media. If you were able to join us, thank you! If not, I hope you can attend a future event. At Nine Network we were surrounded by state-of-the-art production equipment and staging. It reminded me of how very important it is for CFM to effectively communicate with our members, our board of directors and our many affiliated organizations. CFM now has 89 diverse affiliates made up of a variety of groups that support and enjoy nature, parks, outdoor recreation, hiking, birding, wildlife, hunting, forestry, water sports, land protection, fishing and other such endeavors. The individuals who make up each of our affiliates are a major source of strength for the Federation. From past leadership and experience, we at CFM understand the value of engaged affiliates. When I think about the importance of organizational communication, I often recall the contributions of a few conservation icons of yester-year--and today. For example, Jay Norwood Darling, better known as Ding Darling, was best known as an American cartoonist who used his talent to inspire others to embrace conservation. During the 1900's, Darling won two Pulitzer Prizes. He also designed the first duck stamp and became a leader in the emerging conservation movement of the 1930’s--an era when our nation's forests, fish and wildlife were in crisis. Darling used his creative, communication and artistic talents to help found the National Wildlife Federation in 1936, just about the same time that the Missouri Conservation Federation was started. Darling recognized the power of his pen in rallying the conservation community to strive for a higher level of conservation management in America. He advocated for diverse conservation affiliations to step-up and be heard.



In the 1930's, E. Sydney Stephens, the first Executive Director of CFM, shared Darling's vision. Missouri's Federation was leading the campaign to pass Constitutional Amendment Number 4. Stephens knew that the proposition had to appeal to a diverse audience – not only to sportsmen. It needed the support of farmers, birders, garden clubs, urbanites, veterans, and others – a broad based grass roots conservation network. The affiliate strategy for conservation worked. On November 3, 1936, by a margin of 879,213 to 351,962, Proposition No. 4 created a bipartisan Conservation Commission to oversee Missouri wildlife rules and management. That was the largest majority of voters in favor Ding Darling Sketch of a constitutional amendment in Missouri up until that time. Today, Collin O'Mara faces challenges like those faced by Ding Darling and E. Sydney Stephens. O’Mara serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Wildlife Federation, which is made up of 49 state affiliates – one of which is the Conservation Federation of Missouri. NWF is charged with uniting all Americans to ensure that wildlife thrives in a changing world. NWF views its members as a “Conservation Army” poised to rally in support of our natural resources and wildlife. As the CFM Board and affiliate leaders seek to streamline our decision-making process, I hope that you will become engaged in helping us to develop the most effective collaborative initiative possible. We encourage you to share your insights and opinions. In addition, we encourage you to consider serving as an affiliate representative. Wishing you and your family a bountiful Thanksgiving and enjoyable Holiday Season!

Yours in Conservation, Ron Coleman President, CFM


Member News


Honorariums Memorials In memory of Duane Addleman Richard & Judy Ash, Nixa

In memory of Glenn Chambers Richard & Judy Ash, Nixa Class Act Management Company, Springfield Bill & Kathy Hilgeman, Manchester Arnold & Helen Meysenburg, Lees Summit

In memory of David Risberg Toni Bernotas, Creve Coeur Michael & Marcy Fagan, Saint Louis E. Perry & Diana Johnson, Santa Fe, NM Terry Potter, Saint Louis

In memory of Don Johnson Richard & Judy Ash, Nixa Glenn & Kathleen Bell, West Bend, WI William & Jacqueline Berry, Bonne Terre Class Act Management Company, Springfield Ron & Rhonda Coleman, Saint Albans Jennifer Cordia, Saint Charles James & Carol Eaton, Bonne Terre George & Wendy Farrell, Defiance Bill & Kathy Hilgeman, Manchester Johnny & Denise Johnson Thomas & Sharon Jones, Festus Arnold & Helen Meysenburg, Lees Summit T.L. & M.S. Miller, Saint Louis Collin O’Mara, Board and Staff of the National Wildlife Federation, Reston, VA Abe & Jan Phillips, Saint Louis Craig & Jennifer Rosenthal, Chesterfield David Sabada, Kirkwood Bob & Elizabeth Ziehmer, California Heather Wood, Clayton Howard Wood, Bonne Terre Nicole Wood, Bonne Terre

Why I Became a Life Member of CFM: Andy Blunt


y family is pleased to join the Conservation Federation of Missouri efforts with a lifetime membership. The mission of preserving the outdoors is vital and the tradition of getting in the field provides the next generation with a unique perspective of much of what makes our country the greatest nation on earth. Nobody works harder than the Conservation Federation of Missouri; their efforts to educate and to advocate are making a difference. Our families lifetime membership represents a lifetime commitment to their efforts.



Member News

WELCOME NEW CFM MEMBERS George Ballinger, Hannibal

Rich Duffner, Mexico

Richard Lockard, Saint Louis

Greg Smith, Slater

Carson Banks, Columbia

Troy Eichelberger, California

Josh Locke, Arcanum, OH

Ryan Smith, Slater

Casey Bergthold, Paris

William Enter, Cape Fair

Lauren Lockwood, Columbia

Steven Smith, Monroe City

Bill Berkley, Kansas City

Sean Foley, Kansas City

Jeremy Loy, Parkville

Bart Somers, Chesterton, IN

Dustin & Sarah Berry,

Freddy Furlong, Sturgeon

Harold Mabrey, Columbia

Andrew Steelman, Columbia

Scott Gerlt, Columbia

Andrew Mallinak, Columbia

John Stoats, Rocheport

Mitch Gibler, Columbia

Tom Martin, Slater

Gary Strack, Raymore

Centralia John Besser & Cathy Richter,

Tim Gibler, Jefferson City

John Massey, Columbia

Eric Strope, Jefferson City

Devin Block, Ashland


Mike Glidewell, Savannah

Alek McLaughlin, Kansas City

David Strubhart, Saint Charles

Tom Boersig, Columbia

Dalton Griffith, Slater

William Mees, Columbia

Norman Sutter, Millstadt, IL

Aaron Brandt, Concordia

Shawn Gruber, Columbia

Donna Menown, Jefferson City

Tom Terwilliger, La Monte

Chris Brandt, Knob Noster

Steve Hagan, Mexico

Richard & Sophie Miller,

Jamie Thoenen, Jefferson City

Allan Branstetter,

David Hamilton, Saint Louis

Raymondville Tyler Bredehoeft, Sweet Springs


Spencer Tieman, Alma

Brent Hampy, Smithton

Skip Miller, Columbia

Ralph Tingley, Columbia

Brad Hanneken, Washington

Tom Misasi, Kansas City

Tom Tyler, Sweet Springs

Scott Harrison, Kansas City

Rick Moore, O’Fallon

Kody Uhlich, Slater

Chris Brooke, Savannah

John Hauch, Bucyrus

Sebastian Moreno, Columbia

Daniel Vo, Harrisburg

Kurt Brooke, Country Club

Hannah Hemmelgarn,

Trevor Morgan, Columbia

Harvey Voss, Linn

Stacy Morse, Columbia

Larry Wagner, Palmyra

Mike Brooke, Boonville


Tom Brooke, Saint Joseph

Johnie Hendrix, Ashland

Mark Newbold, Jefferson City

John Wallace, Columbia

Landon Brown, Slater

Kenny & Sophie Hood,

Paul Newton, Jefferson City

Adam Weber, Lohman

Brice Bruemmer, Jefferson City


Thomas Nichols,

Mark Weber, Russellville

Karl Burkett, Harrisburg

Jeremy Hudson, Rutledge

Mike Claspille, O’Fallon

Rick Kaiser, Macon

Tim Osborne, Warrenton

Dale Westerhold, Saint Louis

Chelsea Clever, Palmyra

Jim Keeven, Holts Summit

Eddie Palmer, Columbia

Ron Whittaker, Mexico

Don Clever, Jr., Palmyra

Michael Kidd, High Ridge

Joe Pollina, Kansas City

Jack Whittle, Saint Louis

Donald Clever, Pleasant Hill

Dallas Kirby, Slater

Jason Powell, Palmyra

Skyler Wiegmann, Quincy, IL

Jeffery Cockerham,

Montgomery City

Chris Weinreich, Columbia

Derrick Kirby, Slater

Joe Powell, Rocheport

Earl Williamson, Hallsville

Jefferson City

Vince Klakovich, Saint Charles

Tom Powell, Palmyra

Nathan Woodland, Kansas City

Jim Cook, Hallsville

Jerome Kleekamp, Washington

Robert Pyse, Hannibal

Luke Young, Boonville

David & Matt Cruse, Columbia

Bryan Knowles,

Louis Richter, Columbia

Ed Darti, Columbia

Montgomery City

Dale Ruether, Marthasville

Matt Dear, Columbia

John Kraus, Jefferson City

Darryl Ruettgers, Jefferson City

Coleen DeHaven, Freeburg

Doug Lane, Success, AR

Kent Rupp, Palmyra

Mike Derendinger,

Caleb Lauer, Boonville

Jeremy Russlan, Jefferson City

Michael Lauer, Boonville

Danny Sapp, Columbia

Matthew Devore, Columbia

Holts Summit

Rob LeForce, Crane

Mike Schmitz, Columbia

Stu Devore, Columbia

Phil Lewis, Marshfield

Phil Schroeder, Centertown

Tom DeWall, New Franklin

Randy Lewis, Licking

Trent Schroeder, Palmyra

Vince Donze, Kansas City

Tim Lewis, Marshfield

Jarrod Schwartz, Columbia

Cody Doscher, Columbia

Jerry Lively, Poplar Bluff

Matthew Simmons, Ewing

CFM would like to thank the 201 members that renewed since our last publication.



Committed to Community & Conservation Owned by the members they serve, Missouri’s electric cooperatives do more than provide reliable and affordable electricity. They are active in their communities, concerned for the wellbeing of their neighbors and devoted to the rural way of life that makes the Show-Me State a special place to live, work and play. Missouri’s electric cooperatives are dedicated to protecting the land, air and water resources important to you and your quality of life. Learn more at



Member News

Gear Guide Wiley X Kryptek Highlander Frame Born on the battlefield by developing unparalleled relationships with U.S. Armed Forces and elite Special Forces units, Wiley X remains a standard issue item with many of these freedom protectors. These Wiley X Kryptek sunglasses feature polarized, shatterproof selenite polycarbonate lenses and 100 percent UVA/UVB protection with distortion-free clarity. Unlike traditional stick and leaf camouflage, the Kryptek design incorporates micro and macro layering inspired by artillery camouflage netting. This creates a 3D appearance on a 2D surface and near-invisibility. Kryptek Highlander increases stealth when pursuing a wide range of quarry in mixed terrain.

Case Knives 9-Piece Household Cutlery Block Set W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Company is an American manufacturer of premium, hand-crafted knives that are passed down for generations. This kitchen set of knives feature tru-sharp surgical steel blades with solid walnut handles. The set includes a 3-inch paring knife, 5 1/2-inch tomato slicer, 6-inch boning knife, 7-inch santoku, 8-inch chef's knife, 8-inch bread knife, 9-inch slicing knife and a 10-inch sharpening stick. The set features a beautiful hardwood countertop storage block. Case Knives are covered with a limited lifetime warranty.

Stanley Classic One Hand Vacuum Mug Meet your new best friend. Once you use this workhorse of a mug, you’ll never want to use anything else. This one handed vacuum insulated mug brings the thermal performance of a vacuum insulated thermos into a portable mug. One handed and fully leak-proof, you can drink your morning pick-me-up on the go one handed and with no spills. Featuring a lid that comes apart for proper cleaning, you can enjoy clean drinking day in and day out.

Rat-L-Trap This is it, the Original Rat-L-Trap, named after Bill Lewis’ old station wagon and dominating the lipless rattling bait market since its introduction in the late 1960s. Measuring around 3” and weighing 1/2 ounce, the Rat-L-Trap can be fished from fast to slow, shallow to deep and everything in between. The Rat-L-Trap has stood the test of time and proven that it’s the most effective lipless crankbait in the widest variety of conditions. Many will argue that it’s one of the best bass lures ever made. In fact, Outdoor Life referred to Rat-L-Trap as the “Most Influential Fishing Lure” of all time in their Hall of Fame fishing lures article.

IQ Pro Hunter Bow Sight IQ's Hunter Three-Pin Bow Sight combines one sliding pin with two adjustable fixed pins so you can have precise accuracy at extended ranges as well as quick shot opportunities at close range without having to adjust a slider. Battery-free Retina Lock Technology features an alignment that's 50 percent smaller than previous models to enhance downrange accuracy by ensuring your eye, pin and target are lined up the same every time. Rapid High Pitch pin adjustment makes it quick and easy to change distance on the fly. Fully enclosed .019"-dia. fiber-optic pins gather optimal light. Built-in bubble level. Includes two marking sight tapes.



Member News

CALENDAR UPCOMING AFFILIATE EVENTS BOONE'S LICK CHAPTER MASTER NATURALIST NOV 1: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 4744510 NOV 4: Prairie Seed Collection, Tucker Prairie; Chris Newbold (573) 8157901 ext. 3392 NOV 4: Hike to Hidden Treasurers, Rock Bridge Memorial State Park, Columbia (1:30 – 3:30pm) NOV 8: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 4744510 NOV 11: Columbia Crawdads Stream Team Cleanup (8 – 11am); Lisa Rohmiller (573) 874-7499 NOV 15: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510 NOV 22: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510 NOV 29: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510 DEC 2: Hike to Hidden Treasures, Rock Bridge Memorial State Park, Columbia (1:30 – 3:30pm) DEC 6: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510 DEC 9: Columbia Crawdads Stream Team Cleanup (8 – 11am); Lisa Rohmiller (573) 874-7499 DEC 13: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510 DEC 20: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510 DEC 27: Birding Trips with Bill Clark (7:30am – 4pm); Bill Clark (573) 474-4510



BURROUGHS AUDUBON SOCIETY OF GREATER KANSAS CITY NOV 7: Excitement, Beauty and Adventure: Journeying to Alaska, Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center, Kansas City (6:30pm) NOV 9: Winter’s Bird Gardens, Burroughs Audubon Nature Center and Bird Sanctuary, Blue Springs (10am – 12pm) NOV 15: Winter’s Bird Gardens, Burroughs Audubon Nature Center and Bird Sanctuary, Blue Springs (10am – 12pm) NOV 18: Winter’s Bird Gardens, Burroughs Audubon Nature Center and Bird Sanctuary, Blue Springs (10am – 12pm) FOREST AND WOODLAND ASSOCIATION OF MISSOURI DEC 6: Missouri Tree Farm Committee and Missouri Forestry Resources Advisory Council Joint Winter Meeting, Missouri Farm Bureau Headquarters, Jefferson City (9am – 4pm) GREENWAY NETWORK NOV 4: Shred It and Forget, Cottleville (9am – 12pm) NOV 4: Hall Street on the Mississippi Cleanup (9am – 2pm) NOV 6: Board Meeting, Saint Peters (7 – 9pm) DEC 4: Board Meeting, Saint Peters (7 – 9pm)

MISSISSIPPI VALLEY DUCK HUNTERS ASSOCIATION DEC 13: Installation of Officers and Annual Christmas Party MISSOURI ASSOCIATION OF MEAT PROCESSORS DEC 9: Board of Directors Meeting (9am) MISSOURI COALITION FOR THE ENVIRONMENT NOV 8: West Lake Landfill Prayer Vigil, Bridgeton (10 – 10:30am) NOV 16: West Lake Landfill Community Meeting, Bridgeton (6:30 – 8:30pm) NOV 22: West Lake Landfill Prayer Vigil, Bridgeton (10 – 10:30am) DEC 13: West Lake Landfill Prayer Vigil, Bridgeton (10 – 10:30am) DEC 21: West Lake Landfill Community Meeting, Bridgeton (6:30 – 8:30pm) DEC 27: West Lake Landfill Prayer Vigil, Bridgeton (10 – 10:30am) MISSOURI DUCKS UNLIMITED NOV 2: Chapter Dinner, American Legion, Sweet Springs (6 – 10pm); Sherrie Heaper (660) 335-6508 NOV 4: Golden Valley Membership Banquet, Benson Convention and Exposition Center, Clinton (5:30 – 10pm); Jordan Daugherty (660) 924-1128 NOV 4: Two Rivers Suzies Ladies Dinner, Spazio’s Westport, Saint Louis (6:30 – 9:30pm); Jane Bell (314) 570-1040

Member News NOV 4: Chariton County Dinner, Knight and Rucker Hall, Brunswick (5:30 – 10pm); Spencer Harmon (660) 413-2846 NOV 4: Lincoln County Dinner, Knights of Columbus, Elsberry (5:30 – 10pm); Scott Mills (636) 322-8558 NOV 11: Squaw Creek Dinner, The Klub, Mound City (6 – 10pm); Bill Beasley (660) 572-0186 NOV 18: Chapter Dinner, Elks Lodge, Louisiana (5:30 – 10pm); Debbie Adams (573) 795-7500 DEC 31: Calendar Raffle; Todd Carlton (573) 415-6697 MISSOURI HUNTING HERITAGE FEDERATION NOV 9: Gentlemen’s Wild Game Dinner, Affare Restaurant, Kansas City (6:30 – 10:30pm) MISSOURI PARK AND RECREATION ASSOCIATION NOV 8: NE Region Marketing Workshop, The Linc, Jefferson City NOV 14-16: CPSI, Kansas City NOV 16: Southeast Region Mini Conference, Community Center, Maryland Heights DEC 7: Legislative Workshop, Missouri State Capitol, Jefferson City DEC 8: Board Meeting, MPRA Office, Jefferson City MISSOURI PRAIRIE FOUNDATION NOV 3: Soil Health Workshop, Saint Louis Community College – Meramec Campus, Saint Louis (8:30am – 3pm) NOV 4: Native Tree Walk, Bellefontaine Cemetery, Saint Louis (9am – 2pm)

MISSOURI TROUT FISHERMEN'S ASSOCIATION SAINT LOUIS DEC 2: Christmas Party, Fun Fishing and Meeting, Montauk Lodge, Salem MISSOURI WHITETAILS UNLIMITED NOV 18: Chapter Banquet, Community Center, Milan DEC 2: Moniteau County Sportsman Banquet, Community Center, Jamestown OZARK FLY FISHERS NOV 9-12: Bennett Spring Trout Park, Sand Springs Resort, Lebanon DEC 4: Board Meeting, Saint Basil the Great Orthodox, Saint Louis (7 - 8pm) NOV 14: General Membership Meeting, Edgar M. Queeny County Park, Ballwin (7 – 9pm) OZARK WILDERNESS WATERWAYS CLUB NOV 11: Potluck Dinner, Swope Park, Kansas City (6:30 - 7:30pm) NOV 11: Business Meeting, Swope Park, Kansas City (7:30 - 9pm) DEC 1-3: Niangua Hike and Paddle, Bennett Spring State Park, Lebanon DEC 2: Horse Drawn Christmas Parade, Lawrence, KS (11am – 12pm) DEC 9: Decorate the Dining Hall (9 – 11am) DEC 9: Potluck Dinner, Swope Park, Kansas City (6:30 - 7:30pm) DEC 9: Business Meeting, Swope Park, Kansas City (7:30 - 9pm) DEC 31-JAN 1: Current River, Echo Bluff State Park, Newton Township

POMME DE TERRE CHAPTER MUSKIES NOV 4: White Bass Outing and Nominations Meeting, Pomme de Terre Lake; George Donner (816) 678-1623 NOV 5: King of the Lake Tournament (Part 3), Pomme de Terre Lake; George Donner (816) 678-1623 DEC 2: Annual Planning Meeting, Pomme de Terre Lake (10am); George Donner (816) 678-1623 SAINT LOUIS AUDUBON SOCIETY NOV 2: Birding Basics: Playing Around with Birds, Dennis and Judith Jones Visitor and Education Center – Forest Park, Saint Louis (5 – 6:30pm) NOV 4: Beginner Bird Walk, Forest Park, Saint Louis (8:15 – 10:30am) NOV 5: Fall Gaggle, Creve Coeur Lakehouse, Saint Louis (2 – 5pm) NOV 11: Honeysuckle Removal, Creve Coeur Park, Saint Louis (9am – 12pm) DEC 2: Beginner Bird Walk, Forest Park, Saint Louis (8:15 – 10:30am) DEC 9: Bradford Pear Purge, Creve Coeur Park, Saint Louis (9am – 12pm)



Member News

Wild Game Bourbon-Molasses Sloppy Joes in a Slow Cooker • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •


How To

2 lbs cubed venison or other wild game meat 15 oz fresh grape tomatoes 1 white onion, diced 1 bell pepper, diced 5 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 cup bourbon 1/4 cup molasses 1/4 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup tomato paste 1/8 cup Worcestershire sauce 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce 1 tablespoon butter 1 tablespoon chili powder 1 teaspoon coriander 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes 1/8 cup corn starch, dissolved in 1/8 cup water 8 onion sandwich buns

1. Preheat your Slow Cooker on high. 2. Run the cubed venison through the coarse plate of your Meat Grinder. 3. Combine all ingredients in your Slow Cooker, except for the corn starch. Cook on high for 4 hours. 4. Stir in the corn starch - this will help to thicken the sloppy joe mix. 5. Serve on onion buns. Recipe serves approximately 8



Member News

St. Louis Event


he Conservation Federation of Missouri’s (CFM) Explore Missouri’s Outdoors: St. Louis took place on Saturday, October 7 at the Nine Network of Public Media. This is the third annual event that has taken place each fall in the St. Louis region. Participants started by touring the station of the Nine Network and had their picture taken on the set of the acclaimed show Donnybrook. A reception was held and guests listened to the sounds of the Root Diggers group. A live auction then preceded a nice meal provided by Callier’s Catering. The silent auction then closed with various nice items that were donated for the event. The evening culminated with a powerful presentation by CFM Executive Director Brandon Butler. He showcased the many facets of CFM, along with showing a video, Spring Rising. This video captured the Governor’s annual youth turkey hunt, which was filmed this past spring. Everyone enjoyed a great evening of visiting and learning about protecting and promoting the wildlife and natural resources of Missouri, while hearing about the importance of the Conservation Federation of Missouri.

Statement of Ownership



Guests enjoy the Explore Missouri's Outdoors: St. Louis event. (Photo: Denise McKay)

A special thank you goes out to all the donors that purchased tables or provided items for the live and silent auctions. Without your continued support, we would not have been able to put on such a successful event.

Tyler Schwartze Events Manager


Member News

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of Missouri (CFM) is offering a three-year membership for $100 1960 that includes a stainless &ŝƌƐƚƚƵƌŬĞLJƐĞĂƐŽŶŝŶϮϯLJĞĂƌƐ͘ steel 20 oz. CFM Yeti Rambler. The many historic 1982 achievements of CFM have KƉĞƌĂƟŽŶ'ĂŵĞdŚŝĞĨĨŽƌŵĞĚ͘ all been made possible thanks to individuals like you working together to 1990 accomplish extraordinary &ŝƌƐƚƐĞŐŵĞŶƚŽĨƚŚĞ<ĂƚLJdƌĂŝů feats. If our future ŽƉĞŶĞĚŝŶZŽĐŚĞƉŽƌƚ͘ is to be as successful as our past, then we will need your help. Please join CFM today.2002


Our members are hunters, fishermen, foresters, &ŝƌƐƚĚĞĞƌƐĞĂƐŽŶŝŶϳLJĞĂƌƐ͘ campers, trappers, hikers, paddlers, birdwatchers, gardeners and general outdoor enthusiasts. Anyone who appreciates Missouri's 1976 natural resources and ĞƐŝŐŶĨŽƌŽŶƐĞƌǀĂƟŽŶ^ĂůĞƐdĂdžƉĂƐƐĞĚ͘ sporting heritage benefits from the actions of CFM. We are “The Voice for Missouri's Outdoors” for 1984 citizensWĂƌŬƐĂŶĚ^ŽŝůƐ across the state and ^ĂůĞƐdĂdžƉĂƐƐĞĚ͘ at the Capitol. Become a member and know you are supporting the outdoors you cherish. 1992 ^ŚĂƌĞƚŚĞ,ĂƌǀĞƐƚĨŽƌŵĞĚ͘

To join CFM, visit our website for easy online at 2006 registration a three-year subscription to, DŝƐƐŽƵƌŝǀŽƚĞƌƐƌĞŶĞǁĞĚƚŚĞWĂƌŬƐĂŶĚmail our magazine Conservation the below application to 728 ^ŽŝůƐdĂdžďLJƚŚĞŚŝŐŚĞƐƚƉĞƌĐĞŶƚĂŐĞƚŽĚĂƚĞ͘ Federation, special memberW. Main Street, Jefferson only discounts to select businesses and invitations to City, MO 65101 or contact Laurie Coleman at Today CFM events throughout the year. 573-634-2322 ext. 107. ŽŶƐĞƌǀĂƟŽŶ>ĞĂĚĞƌƐŚŝƉ Your membershipŽƌƉƐĨŽƌŵĞĚ͘ includes

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Member News

Cabela's Hazelwood Upcoming Events November 4-5 • 11AM Layering for Hunting and Camo Options - Outfitters will go over layering techniques as well as the different types of camo and camo patterns that will work best for the environment you are hunting in. • 1PM DIY Jerky and Sausage - Make the most of your wild game and learn how to make your own jerky and sausage. Featuring smokers and dehydrators, our team will also be showcasing recommended products for getting started in making jerky and sausage. November 11-12 • Hometown Hero’s - Join us this weekend as we celebrate and honor all active and reserve military and veterans along with law enforcement, firefighters, search and rescue personnel and EMS. Stop by and see how these heroes ensure our safety and well-being. • Saturday 11AM Holiday Turkey Frying Entertaining your family and friends this holiday season can be the best when you fry your holiday turkey. Join our outfitters as they show you everything you need to get started including fryers, oils, seasonings and accessories. November 18-19 • 12PM S.T.R. Advanced Electronic Hearing Protection - Try a pair of our best in class hearing protection, good for in the field and at the range. November 24-25 • Friday Black Friday Celebration - Get to Cabela’s early Friday morning. The first 600 customers (over 18) in line will receive a card containing one of many great giveaways. We will have lots to do while you’re waiting in line: music, trivia, Santa, movies, etc. • Saturday 11AM-3PM Free Photos with Santa Come get your free picture taken with Santa. (limit 1 picture per family)



December 2-3 • Saturday 11AM-3PM Free Photos with Santa Come get your free picture taken with Santa. (limit 1 picture per family) • Saturday 1PM Deer Bomb - What is a Deer Bomb? It’s the best thing you will have at your next tailgate party. Have some extra deer meat sitting around? Come see us grill up some bacon wrapped deer meat with jalapenos and cheese. December 9-10 • Get to Cabela’s early Friday morning. The first 250 customers (over 18) in line will receive a giveaway card. • Saturday 12PM How to Make Your Own Summer Sausage - Our Outfitter will demonstrate how easy it is to create your own summer sausage using our Carnivore Commercial-Grade Grinder and seasoning mix. They’ll take you through the steps of grinding the meat, adding the seasoning and stuffing the casings. • Sunday 11AM-3PM Red Cross Blood Drive - Help save a life today by donating blood to those in need. Schedule a blood appointment with the American Red Cross today or walk in after you shop. December 16-17 • Saturday 11AM-3PM Free Photos with Santa Come get your free picture taken with Santa. (limit 1 picture per family) • 1PM Keep Your Edge with Free Knife Sharpening - Be amazed at how easy it is to sharpen your kitchen or hunting knives at this product demo. It only takes a few minutes to get the sharpest edge you have ever had. Free knife sharpening will follow the presentation.

As the first Cabela’s in Missouri, we pulled out all the stops to bring a serious outdoor experience to the Show-Me-State. The Hazelwood Cabela’s store was built to not only surround customers with quality outdoor products, but to engage them with lifelike taxidermy, local fish swimming in the aquarium and an indoor archery test area.

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Affiliate Spotlight

Missouri Chapter Walnut Council


he Missouri Chapter, formed in 1983, is an affiliate of the national organization but operates under its own bylaws with leadership provided by locally elected officers serving on an Executive Committee. Currently, the Chapter has 113 members. Two meetings with field days are held annually (spring and fall) and members are encouraged to participate in activities carried out by the parent organization as well as events hosted by neighboring chapters. The Missouri Chapter focuses on assisting in the technical transfer of forest research to members and private woodland landowners, encouraging field research applications, supporting activities of interest and value to forest resource partners, and demonstrating techniques in planting, managing and marketing find hardwoods.

Missouri Chapter Council Objectives: • To advance cultural practices and help transfer science and technology from the laboratory to actual field practice. • To encourage good forest management and sustainability of existing timber. • To encourage new plantings of walnut and other forest species. • To sponsor state chapters and other events of interest to tree growers. • To assist foresters in keeping current with the latest research and industry information. For more information on The Missouri Chapter Walnut Council visit their website at

Affiliate Organizations Anglers of Missouri, Inc. Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives Audubon Society of Missouri Bass Slammer Tackle Big Game Hunters, Inc. Boone's Lick Chapter Missouri Master Naturalist Burroughs Audubon Society of Greater Kansas City Capital City Fly Fishers Chesterfield Citizens Committee for the Environment Deer Creek Sportsman's Club, Inc. Festus-Crystal City Conservation Club Forest and Woodland Association of Missouri Forest Releaf of Missouri Friends of Rock Bridge Memorial State Park Garden Club of St. Louis Gateway Chapter Trout Unlimited Greenbelt Land Trust of Mid-Missouri Greenway Network, Inc. Katy Land Trust L-A-D Foundation Lincoln University Wildlife Club Mid-Missouri Outdoor Dream Mid-Missouri Trout Unlimited Midwest Diving Council Mississippi Valley Duck Hunters Association Missouri Association of Meat Processors Missouri Atlatl Association Missouri BASS Federation Nation Missouri Bird Conservation Initiative Missouri Bow Hunters Association Missouri Caves & Karst Conservancy

Missouri Chapter of the American Fisheries Society Missouri Chapter of the Wildlife Society Missouri Chapter Soil & Water Conservation Society Missouri Coalition for the Environment Missouri Community Forestry Council Missouri Conservation Agents Association Missouri Conservation Pioneers Missouri Consulting Foresters Association Missouri Ducks Unlimited State Council Missouri Forest Products Association Missouri Grouse Chapter of QUWF Missouri Hunter Education Instructors Association Missouri Hunters for Fair Chase Missouri Hunting Heritage Federation, Inc. Missouri National Wild Turkey Federation Missouri Native Seed Association Missouri Outdoor Communicators Missouri Parks & Recreation Association Missouri Parks Association Missouri Prairie Foundation Missouri River Bird Observatory Missouri River Relief Missouri Smallmouth Alliance Missouri Society of American Foresters Missouri Sport Shooting Association Missouri State Campers Association Missouri State Chapter of the Quality Deer Management Association Missouri State University Bull Shoals Field Station Missouri Taxidermist Association Missouri Trappers Association

Missouri Trout Fishermen’s Association Missouri Whitetails Unlimited MU Wildlife and Fishing Science Graduate Student Organization Mule Deer Foundation North Side Division Conservation Federation Open Space Council of the Saint Louis Region Ozark Fly Fishers, Inc. Ozark Wilderness Waterways Club Perry County Sportsman Club Pomme de Terre Chapter Muskies, Inc. Quail & Upland Wildlife Federation, Inc. Quail Forever & Pheasants Forever River Bluffs Audubon Society Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Roubidoux Fly Fishers Association South Side Division Southwest Missouri Fly Fishers Springfield Plateau Chapter Missouri Master Naturalist St. Louis Audubon Society Student Air Rifle Program Tipton Farmers & Sportsman's Club Tri-Lakes Fly Fishers Troutbusters of Missouri United Bow Hunters of Missouri Walnut Council & Other Fine Hardwoods Wecomo Sportsman's Club Wild Elk Institute of Missouri Windsor Lake Rod & Gun Club



Member News

Resolutions Process and Timeline Begins Now


n 2016, we began using a new process and timeline to bring CFM resolutions to the annual convention (you can find the timeline and process on the CFM website). This is a quick reminder to get you thinking about the process now. Resource Advisory Committees (RAC) need to know if you have issues or topics which you believe should be addressed at the next convention. Yes, it’s several months away, but RACs will begin researching/ discussing topics with their committees this fall and winter – the same as last year. At the last convention, this new way of working on resolutions in advance led to most convention resolutions being “pre-filed” in the months leading up to the convention – they were well-researched, had lots of input from various members, organizations and agencies, and required little editing during convention. Even if you are not part of any committee, remember that all of these pre-filed resolutions will be in DRAFT form until finally discussed and voted on by everyone in attendance at the convention. Of course, members may bring time-sensitive issues/ topics to the attention of the Executive Director at any time during the year, but the next several weeks are a most important time for you to act if you want a resolution to be considered at the next convention. This advance work ensures that issues/topics are afforded the time they need to be fully researched and developed prior to the convention. Please provide your issues and background information before the end of December – but the sooner, the better. These changes to the resolutions process help move us forward, doing more thorough and better work for conservation, so get on board and get your issues considered. Also in 2016, the Board and the Executive Committee approved 5-year expiration dates for current and past resolutions.

Dick Wood discusses a resolution during the CFM Annual Convention in 2015. (Photo: Emma Kessinger)

However, if the Resolutions Committee and/or RACs determine older/expired resolutions should be left “on the books”, there may be no change other than a new date. Changes other than a new date will still be subject to member approval. This review will happen over the next 2-3 years. If you want a resolution considered at the next convention, provide the requested information below. This is the minimum amount of information you must include to have your ideas considered by a committee. PLEASE DO NOT send a simple list of ideas – other members will not have enough information to know what you intended, or may not be aware of your issue. Remember that the CFM staff and Executive Director, and the committees and chairs must have the background information you provide in order to fully consider or research the topic. If you don’t provide background information, your ideas may not be considered – simply for lack of information and/or understanding.

Member/Affiliate Request for Conservation Issue Review Please fill out this request with enough information to assist with committee assignment and initial consideration of the topic by the appropriate Resource Advisory Committee(s). Requests should be sent to the CFM Executive Director. Date: Title: The Issue or Topic: Possible Position or Recommendation(s): Submitted by: Name of Contact: Email or Phone Number of Contact:



Member News

Conservation Leadership Corps


he Conservation Leadership Corps (CLC) held their 2nd annual fall workshop at Lake of the Ozarks State Park in October. The group of students spent time discussing conservation issues with resource professionals and prioritized their topics of concern. The group is now actively working to develop the resolutions, which will be presented to the Resource Advisory Committees in January. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This weekend is a great opportunity for students to learn about and participate in conservation advocacy and policy development. They get to be involved in the resolution process while building communication and leadership skills. Students also have time to get to know others from across the state who are passionate about the same things they are,â&#x20AC;? stated Jen Sampsell, Education and Outreach Coordinator. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is fun to see them interact and build friendships that will last a lifetime.â&#x20AC;? Students will continue to follow the process of creating resolutions with their participation at the Annual Convention in March. Both experiences provide the students with opportunities to network with resource professionals in conservation fields.

Students with Resource Professionals at the CLC Fall Workshop. (Photo: Amber Edwards)

The next generation is important to the future of conservation and natural resources in Missouri and to give students the tools and skills to be successful. Applications are being accepted for the CLC program through November 15, 2017. Please share with a high school or college student that you know today! Visit to learn more.

Conservation Achievement Awards


The 82nd Conservation Federation of Missouri (CFM)Annual Convention will be here before you know it! We will be meeting from March 9-11, 2018 at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Jefferson City. CFM is now accepting nominees for the Conservation Achievement Awards. These nominees should be Missourians who exemplify all that CFM stands for, and have been bettering Missouri's outdoors through personal efforts throughout the year. Those who win the Conservation Achievement Award will be recognized at the CFM Annual Convention. Visit to download a nomination form. Mail forms to the CFM office in Jefferson City. Please only choose one category per nomination.






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Feature Story

Share the Harvest: A Different Perspective


hen Conservation Federation of Missouri (CFM) Executive Director, Brandon Butler asked, “I was wondering if you would be interested in being the new chairperson of the CFM Share the Harvest committee?” Wow. I have been a supporter of this program since its inception in 1994, but never once gave a thought to getting involved in the administration and logistics of it. Gary Van De Velde, the longtime chairperson I am replacing, was moving on to handle other CFM business and Mr. Butler thought that my little hillbilly feet might someday grow to fill his shoes.



After hanging up the phone, the realization started to sink in that I really had no idea about what I had just agreed to do. Sure, I knew what Share the Harvest was – a program set up by the Conservation Federation and the Missouri Department of Conservation to allow hunters to donate deer, in part or whole, to those in need. But, I knew next to nothing about how the process worked, whom all was involved, and where the program’s funding came from. Since I know a lot of folks have questions like mine, I thought I would use the rest of this article revealing the answers to the questions I had.

Feature Story Who are the key players in the program? The Missouri Department of Conservation takes care of lining up the meat processors and getting them approved. It also works with the food pantries that will receive the meat plus fields calls having to do with regulations questions. The Conservation Federation of Missouri oversees acquiring monetary donations needed to run the program, paying out the money to the processors, advertising, and all the paperwork that comes with those tasks. What does it cost me to donate venison to the program? Usually nothing. If you choose to donate an entire deer, CFM pays the processor $75 of the processing cost. Most processors take care of the donated deer for that price. You can also look up participating processors by county online at species/deer/deer-share-harvest. I strongly suggest that you call the processor you are thinking of using before you take your deer to them. If you want to donate only part of your deer, say the ground meat, then you are responsible for the entire processing fee and you can donate as little as one pound of meat. I’m surprised that more people don’t do this option. You have to pay for the processing anyway. Why not donate a little meat and help folks out too? How do I donate deer meat to the program? First, check your deer in using the telecheck system. Then find a processor participating in STH and call them to confirm they are taking deer and their fee. Take the deer to them and let them know whether you are donating the entire deer or just a portion. Your cost will be adjusted accordingly. Remember, at least $75 of the processing fee is covered if you donate a whole deer. Who is eligible to receive meat from the program? Any Missourian who needs the meat is eligible. Just contact a participating food pantry and they will give you the details on what you need to do to get some. I know from personal experience that some hunters are reluctant to donate their deer because they think that the meat will ultimately end up in the hands of individuals just trying to game the system.

While I cannot say this does not happen, I would be willing to bet that’s by far the exception rather than the rule. Many Missourians, with at least one job, who are trying to support their families just need a little help. We’ve all needed help from time to time so it’s only right to pay it forward whenever we can. Despite living in the Land of Plenty, millions of people go to bed hungry every day. In Missouri, this food insecurity and hunger continues to increase with studies suggesting that almost one in six individuals suffer from inadequate food access. As hunters, and concerned citizens, we can help these folks by sharing our bounty with them through programs like Share the Harvest. With a lot of the American public against hunting, or apathetic towards the sport, this is a chance to show these people that we’re not just a bunch of bloodthirsty killers trying to put heads on a wall. I know I judge the success of my own season by whether I can donate a deer to STH or not. Hunters already give a lot in the way of license and tag fees. But why not give something a bit more tangible that might help someone right there in your community? The satisfaction you’ll get out of helping others will be around long after the thrill of the hunt is over. Darren Haverstick (Left) CFM members Gary Van De Velde and Earl Cannon assist with the Share the Harvest program. (Photo: Emma Kessinger) (Top) Share the Harvest works by hunters donating harvested deer meat to participating meat processors who then prepare the donated venison by grinding it into one-pound packages that are given to local food banks and food pantries. (Photo: Emma Kessinger)




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Feature Story

Native Grassland Management Benefits Quail in Missouri


ew birds have the distinction of announcing their presence by uttering their name, but that is exactly what the Northern Bobwhite does. This famed bird, which in Missouri favors crop borders, savanna and woodland borders, and grasslands, calls with a crisp, clear whistle, parting the air and greeting the sunrise. For decades now that call has been less prevalent on the Missouri landscape and throughout its range, which is east of the Rockies, south to parts of Mexico, north to southwestern Wisconsin, and to the East Coast. It is estimated that between 1965-1995 the population of Bobwhite, also known as quail, declined 70-90%. Annual Breeding Bird Survey data from 2003-2013 shows a continuing yearly decline of 5% in Missouri. This is largely attributed to loss of grasslands and hedgerows in our state. The game bird status of quail makes it one of the most intensely studied species of birds in the world.



In 2014 a study began in Missouri comparing quail populations on prairie sites to sites traditionally managed for quail with man-made rows of shrubs and food plots. The prairie sites in the study are Wahâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;kontah, Shelton Prairie, and Stony Point Conservation Areas. Talbot and Shawnee Trail Conservation Areas are the two sites with traditional quail management, including areas of planted warm-season grasses, food plots, and shrubs. Since 2014, wet weather in early spring has made the first broods largely unsuccessful for both types of management areas. However, while the study is still ongoing, the researchers feel the birds on the sites managed as prairie, with scattered shrubs, prescribed burns, and grazing, are more robust and more successful for re-nesting attempts.

Feature Story Quail need the entire spectrum of grassland microhabitat types for feeding, nesting, and brood rearing— everything from bare ground to a mix of grasses to scattered shrubs. Because native warm-season grasses such as little bluestem, big bluestem, Indian grass, and forbs grow in clumps, they are important quail habitat, allowing for cover yet still open enough for movement. Over five days, both the male and female will work together to scrap the ground in an area approximately 6"x2" and then line it with grass and other vegetation for their nest. They may also weave grasses over the top so the nest is completely hidden from view. Most nests are within 50 feet of a road, trail, field edge, or shrub thicket. Fire is an important part of habitat management as it provides open grasslands and keeps the grassland from becoming overgrown. Newly hatched quail can leave the nest within a day after hatching and are about the size of a bumblebee. Like most terrestrial birds, they are dependent upon insects during the first few weeks of life. Beyond the brooding season, quail consume seeds and leaves on their home range area, which is approximately 15 acres. This fall, Audubon launched a certification program for grassland-fed beef in Missouri that benefits both ranchers and grassland birds such as the Northern Bobwhite. Along with other parameters such as animal welfare and environmental sustainability, participating ranches must monitor grassland birds on their property, allowing more data to be collected as to how bird use changes over time with the prescribed management practices. The first Missouri retail outlets for Audubon Bird-friendly certified beef are in Columbia and Jefferson City. The program stretches across the Great Plains from North Dakota to Texas. There are more than 700 known fossils from the genus of the Bobwhite, dating back 2.5 million years or more. Ensuring the future of quail and all grassland birds in Missouri depends upon habitat for nesting, foraging and feeding young. To learn more about planting natives for quail and other grassland birds go to Mary Nemecek Conservation Chair of Burroughs Audubon


DESCRIPTION This ground-dwelling bird is overall streaked or mottled reddish-brown and white, with a gray tail. Males have a distinctive dark brown cap and face with a white eyestripe and throat. Females are similar, except the white is replaced by buffy, yellowish brown, and the cap and face are not so dark. The “bob-WHITE!” call is distinctive, but it is mimicked by a number of other bird species.

HABITAT Northern bobwhite are still fairly common in grasslands, shrubby pastures, hedgerows and woodland edges. However, populations have been declining in recent decades, due primarily to habitat loss and unfavorable weather during winter and nesting season. The Missouri Department Conservation is helping to reverse the downward trend in bobwhite numbers and improve the statewide population through several initiatives including public education, recreation opportunities and landowner assistance.

LIFECYCLE Bobwhites live in coveys (groups of 5–30 birds) from autumn to the beginning of breeding season the following spring. Eggs are laid about 1 a day and hatch after 23 days. The young are the size of bumblebees and are able to leave the nest about a day after hatching. Up to 3 clutches can be produced before the season ends in about October.

HUMAN The northern bobwhite is a popular game CONNECTIONS bird and is welcomed by farmers as a

destroyer of weeds and harmful insects. For people who don't hunt, these native quail are beloved for their clear, loud song and exciting eruption when flushed.

For more information visit This quail photograph is one of 142 extraordinary images featured in Matt Miles' new book--Missouri, Wild and Wonderful. To view the book, or learn more, please go to (Photo: Matt Miles)



Agency News



rom December through February, Missouri's winter eagle watching is spectacular. Discover nature with the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) through Eagle Days events around the state, or enjoy eagle viewing on your own. Because of the state’s big rivers, many lakes, and abundant wetlands, Missouri is one of the leading lower 48 states for bald eagle viewing. Each fall, thousands of these great birds migrate south from their nesting range in Canada and the Great Lakes states to hunt in the Show-Me State. More than 2,000 bald eagles are typically reported in Missouri during winter. MDC Eagle Days events are listed below. They include live captive-eagle programs, exhibits, activities, videos, and guides with spotting scopes. Be sure to dress for winter weather and don't forget cameras and binoculars. • MOUND CITY: Dec. 2 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Dec. 3 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge near Mound City. Call 816-271-3100 for more information. • KANSAS CITY: Jan. 6 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and Jan. 7 from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Smithville Lake Paradise Pointe Golf Course Clubhouse north of Kansas City. Call 816-532-0174 for more information. • ST. LOUIS: Jan. 13 and 14 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge south of I-270 off Riverview Drive in St. Louis. Call 314-301-1500 for more information. • SPRINGFIELD: Jan. 20 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Jan. 21 from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the MDC Springfield Conservation Nature Center. Call 417-888-4237 for more information. • JEFFERSON CITY: Jan. 27 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the MDC Runge Conservation Nature Center. Call 573-526-5544 for more information. • CLARKSVILLE: Jan. 27 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Jan. 28 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Lock and Dam 24 and Apple Shed Theater in Clarksville. Call 660-785-2424 for more information. • SCHELL CITY: Feb. 3 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Schell City Community Center and Schell Osage Conservation Area. Call 417-876-5226 for more information.



Discover nature with MDC through Eagle Days events around the state, or enjoy eagle viewing on your own. Learn more at EagleDays. (Photo: MDC)

Can't make an Eagle Days event? Other hot spots for winter eagle viewing include: • Lake of the Ozarks at Bagnell Dam Access, east of Bagnell • Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area on Route K, southwest of Columbia • Lock & Dam 20, Canton • Lock & Dam 24 at Clarksville • Lock & Dam 25 east of Winfield • Mingo National Wildlife Refuge northwest of Puxico • Old Chain of Rocks Bridge south of I-270, off of Riverview Drive, St. Louis • Riverlands Environmental Demonstration Area east of West Alton • Schell-Osage Conservation Area north of El Dorado Springs • Smithville Lake north of Kansas City • Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge south of Mound City • Stella at Moses Eagle Park • Swan Lake National Wildlife Refuge south of Sumner • Table Rock Lake and Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery southwest of Branson • Truman Reservoir west of Warsaw For more information, visit

Agency News

Give Holiday Gifts From MDC Nature Shops


he Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) online Nature Shop makes holiday shopping a breeze for anyone interested in nature-themed gifts. Visit it online at mdcnatureshop. com or place orders by calling 877-5218632.

The notes focus on a wide variety of wild happenings throughout the year. Get it from the Department’s online Nature Shop or at MDC nature centers and regional offices for $9 plus tax. Another is the Cooking Wild in Missouri cookbook for $15 plus tax. Canoeists, kayakers and floaters will find A Paddler’s Guide to Missouri a helpful reference for $8 plus tax.

Holiday shoppers can also skip retail stores and visit one of the Conservation Department’s nature center Nature Shops around the state in Kirkwood, Cape Girardeau, Springfield, Kansas City, Blue Springs, and Jefferson City for a surprising array of reasonably priced holiday gifts. One of the most popular holiday gifts is the MDC annual Natural Events Calendar with 12 months of stunning photos and daily notes.

Conservation makes Missouri a great place to hunt and fish so give the gift of hunting and fishing permits. so give the gift of hunting and fishing permits. Buy Missouri hunting and fishing permits from numerous vendors around the state, online at, or through the Conservation Department’s free mobile apps, Mo Hunting and Mo Fishing, available for download through Google Play or the App Store.

MDC Offices Closed Veterans Day, Phone Lines Open


he Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) offices and nature centers will be closed Friday, Nov. 10, in honor of Veterans Day. MDC staffed shooting ranges will be open. MDC Permit Services staff will be answering phones on this day before the opening weekend of the fall firearms deer hunting season to help with permit inquiries. Hunter Education staff will also be available to answer related questions. Please call 573-751-4115 if you have questions on Veterans Day.

MDC employee Jim Napoli (right) assists LaRoy Smith of St. Louis as he prepares to shoot trap at the Jay Henges Shooting Range. Smith is a veteran from the Spinal Cord Injury Ward at Jefferson Barracks Hospital. Napoli’s High Ridge VFW Post, the Conservation Department, and the Association for Paralyzed Veterans of America cooperated to put on the outing June 3. (Photo: MDC)



, S R E T N HU


â&#x20AC;&#x201C;12 1 1 R E B M NOVE Bring your deer to a sampling station near you.


Get information on Chronic Wasting Disease and sampling locations at MDC.MO.GOV/CWD, or in the 2017 Fall Deer & Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information booklet available where permits are sold.



The 25 mandatory CWD sampling counties are: Adair, Barry, Benton, Cedar, Cole, Crawford, Dade, Franklin, Hickory, Jefferson, Knox, Linn, Macon, Moniteau, Ozark, Polk, St. Charles, St. Clair, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, Stone, Sullivan, Taney, Warren, and Washington.

Road trip. We didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t choose the perfect playlist. Or program the GPS. But we did fuel the car that made you realize there are no wrong turns, only new adventures. When the energy you invest in life meets the energy we fuel it with, amazing journeys happen.



Oudoor News

Into the Woods: Hidden Treasure May Be Hiding in Plain Sight on Your Farm


ike many others in the agriculture industry, Harlan Palm has taken the term “retirement” as more of a suggestion than a command. After a lengthy career at DuPont and the University of Missouri, he bought several acres of Missouri woodland and began to learn about timber stand improvement. Today, he’s one of the preeminent experts on the subject. “Education is really important,” he says. “How do we reach out to owners of timber? What can and should be done with their timber instead of letting it grow willy-nilly?” Most farms in Missouri and neighboring states have small areas along creeks that aren’t in production, Palm says. Oftentimes, these 2- to 5-acre plots are sitting on well-drained alluvial soils in creek bottoms that are well-suited for walnuts or other potentially valuable hardwoods. “If a logger came and told you he’d take a few walnut trees off your hand for a couple hundred dollars, maybe you’d say yes,” Palm says. “But what if I told you a veneer grade walnut could be worth several thousand dollars each?”

Missouri Walnut Council members, Bob Ball (left) and Harlan Palm (right), discuss woodland management with Kent and Lori Deimeke of Callaway County. (Photo: Gaby Deimeke)

And Mother Nature is all too happy to throw the occasional wildcard into the mix. “You never know which ones are going to get hit by lighting,” he says.

A recent survey of Missouri woodland landowners reveals that only 5% are doing any sort of timber stand improvement. And it does take a bit of work, Palm says. Walnut, oak and cherry need full sunlight to flourish and become dominant. Otherwise, “junk” trees like sycamore, cottonwood, maple, hackberry and other tree species tend to take over.

Hale notes timber stand improvement is a long-term commitment – something that will more likely benefit his children or grandchildren rather than himself. It has also become one of the more peaceful routines on his farm. “Some people want to sit on the couch and watch football on Sunday afternoons,” he says. “I’d just as soon come out to the woods. A lot of people would look at this land and wonder where they’d put the deer stand, but they wouldn’t see any cash crop potential beyond that.”

The first step is simple enough – take a walk in the woods, according to Missouri farmer Warren Hale. “You need to pick the trees you want to keep, and then try to identify what’s competing with it,” he says. That process is part art, part science, Palm says. Ideally, black walnuts should be spaced about 35 feet apart, which is room for 34 trees per acre. Competitive trees are then girdled with a chainsaw and given a small, precise herbicide application at the girdling site.

Missouri ranchers Kent and Lori Deimeke say timber stand improvement is not a project that can be conquered over a long weekend and then left unchecked. “Some people don’t want to wait 20 years for this, but that’s really what it takes,” Lori says. But the wait can be worth it, Palm asserts. Saw grade black walnut can fetch 50 cents per board foot, and veneer grade wood starts at $2 per board foot and can reach $10 or more.

Picking which trees to keep is often a bit of a guessing game, Palm adds. Oftentimes, too good trees are too close together. They must pore over the details, looking at knots, doglegs and other imperfections, before choosing which one to keep.

“Woodland is good for many things,” he says. “There’s hunting, aesthetics, pride of ownership. But if you manage that land for timber, it can bring real value to those acres.” Ben Potter






Feature Story

Wonders of Wildlife Opens with Celebration


ohnny Morris has become the Walt Disney of wildlife. The Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium at Bass Pro Shops’ flagship store in Springfield, Missouri is now open and it is spectactular. A celebration featuring two United States Presidents, the Secretary of Interior, state leaders, conservation leaders, outdoor industry professionals, NASCAR legends, movie stars, country music stars and more all gathered in Springfield for the unveiling of what most are calling the greatest fish and wildlife museum in the world. Wonders of Wildlife is a celebration of fish and wildlife like no other. The vision of Johnny Morris, the founder of Bass Pro Shops, comes alive in this incredible testament of his devotion to honoring the conservation legacy of North America and beyond. As you make your way through the museum and aquarium, you pass through wildlife and habitat displays from different parts of the world, including



the Rocky Mountains, southern bayous, plains of Africa and Arctic Tundra. The aquarium takes you through many different fish habitats, including fresh water, salt water, swamps, coastal and deep ocean. Your journey through the 350,000-square-foot complex introduces you to 35,000 live fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds. Hundreds of mounted fish, birds and mammals are found throughout the museum. Much of the taxidermy is complimented by hand painted backgrounds, making the scenes so lifelike you think twice before leaning in too close. Legendary hunter, Jim Shockey said, “Johnny is our leader in conservation. This is going to become the center of conservation. A celebration of what hunters, and anglers and outdoors-people have done for the wildlife of this world.” There are numerous dioramas located throughout the Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium. (Photo: Brandon Butler)

Feature Story To complete the entire experience, you’ll cover more than 1.5 miles. Trails wind through diverse landscapes and habitats. Aquatic displays include pools where guests can touch stingrays on the ocean floor. This journey is more than just visual. You’ll experience the sounds, smells and climates of some of the wildest places on earth. Galleries of art, especially those dedicated to the Native Americans, are breathtaking. Special sections of the museum include the Boone & Crockett Club’s National Collection of Head and Horns, the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame, the International Game Fish Association’s Hall of Fame, and a special tribute to past U.S. Presidents who were or remain anglers. Wonders of Wildlife is a destination for all. It didn’t matter who I spoke with at the event, man or a woman, young or old, hunter or not. Everyone who took the tour was blown away. Collin O’Mara, CEO of the National Wildlife Federation said, “Wonders of Wildlife is a place every American kid should have to come. Because I think one of the best ways to inspire the next generation of conservationists is getting young kids engaged with wildlife. This is a great place to begin.” Morris credits his own parents for instilling a love of the outdoors in him. “My parents were both born in 1911. No running water in the house. No electricity. My mom was one of 10 kids in a two-bedroom house. But what they had then, they had the outdoors, and hunting and fishing. It’s family tradition,” Morris said. The morning after the celebration Morris convened a meeting of Bass Pro Shops conservation partners and business vendors. He talked at length about the state of his business and commitment to conservation, and how the two go hand in hand. “I think our company and the outdoor industry, we all have a real obligation to give back to the future of the sports we love and have been our livelihood. This museum and aquarium is one way we can do that in a unique way. The whole facility is about celebrating the role that hunters and anglers have played in the country,” Morris said. He praised the work of many in the room for their dedicated support of fish and wildlife.

Bass Pro Shops Founder, Johnny Morris. (Photo: Brandon Butler)

“All these remarkable leaders, very talented people that have chosen to make conservation their lives work. To get up everyday just fighting for us and the future, and for our kids and grandkids to have a place to grow up like we did. To see things like Lewis and Clark got to see all those years ago,” Morris said. Wonders of Wildlife is so much more than a museum and aquarium. It’s a monument for conservation. This is a must see destination for anyone who loves the outdoors, and all of us who hunt and fish owe Mr. Johnny Morris a tip of the old Bass Pro cap for all he has done to support conservation, which is simply the future’s ability to live as we live today. “I’ve been very blessed my whole life. I grew up here in the Ozarks fishing on the White River with my mom and dad ever since I was a kid, and I’ve been so fortunate, really blessed, that my whole life I’ve been around something I love and that’s fishing and the outdoors,” Morris said. See you down the trail… Brandon Butler Executive Director, CFM NOVEMBER - 2017






Feature Story

Find Those Downed Birds A

downed game bird, be it quail, dove, duck, woodcock, grouse, chukar, or pheasant, can vanish right before your eyes into the habitat from which it flushed. The following methods will up the odds in your favor of finding that prize we call a â&#x20AC;&#x153;bird down.â&#x20AC;? Every bird hunter dreams of the perfect day afield with crisp, cool fall mornings and antsy dogs anxious to wind that first bird of the new season. Picture perfect points, flushes, shots and retrieves to hand cloud our minds. However, every seasoned bird hunter has experienced the desperate disappointment of losing a downed bird even though every aspect of the hunt was flawless to that point.

Adaptive Camo Game birds are a product of their environment. Eons of time have designed birds which remarkably resemble the cover in which they hide and thrive. Much bird cover is thick, almost impenetrable. A good rule of thumb to remember is that your fleeing quarry is usually closer than you might think. If you are not sure where your bird went down, begin your search by looking near to far. After you connect and tumble a bird into dense cover, the work begins to make your best effort to recover it. Downed birds have an uncanny ability to vanish before your eyes. Those birds simply blend into the surrounding cover. A bird can skid, tumble or flop into, over, around and through vegetative cover and forest floor duff which will mask its presence. It is your duty as a hunter to find it.



Feature Story Making the Shot

Search Here, Search There

Shooting well in tight cover takes skill. Skill is acquired through practice. Visit your local sporting clays range regularly prior to the season opener. When the long-desired flush comes, you will be happier with your performance and put more birds in the game bag. Increased accuracy and confidence in your shooting abilities will result in more clean kills as well.

If you fail to locate your bird, where you thought it was, begin a dedicated search. Look around near the spot you thought the bird fell. First thoughts are surprisingly correct and your bird may only be a few feet away. Hunters are keen predators and possess a sense of the presence of game.

Stay Cool Fools rush in where seasoned hunters fear to go. The thrill of the moment overwhelms excited bird hunters. You make a perfect shot and watch the bird tumble from the sky. Instinct urges you to rush in and claim your prize. It is astonishing how quickly surroundings can change if you don’t locate your bird immediately. First, before taking a step, note the exact spot where you stood when you took the shot. This will be your reference point for the duration of your search. Mark the spot with your orange cap, trail tape, toilet paper, or anything visible.

Look for Floaters Keep your eyes trained in the direction of the shot. Look immediately for feathers floating on the breeze. If the wind is blowing left to right and you shot the bird to the left, align the left edge of the drifting feathers with a landmark, such as a tall tree to give you a line to strike for your search. If you have a hunting buddy along, the search is much easier. Have him stand at the point of the shot, while you strike the line to find your downed bird.

Use Your Senses Wild birds use all their senses to escape predators. As a hunter, you must utilize all your senses as well to consistently find and retrieve your downed game birds. You have already observed your bird’s path of flight. Listen closely for sounds of the bird falling through limbs, branches, and forest floor litter. You may hear a muffled thud when the bird strikes the ground. Also listen for the continued wing beats or thrashing of the bird once it goes down.

Scan the area around you in a complete circle. Move out a few feet and repeat the process. Watch for any telltale signs of the bird; tiny droplets of blood, a faint feather, or rustled leaves are clues to look for. Change the angle or position from which you are scanning the cover. Crouch down a bit, then kneel. Laying down on the ground gives you an entirely different perspective of the cover around you. When all else fails, look up. Retrace your steps to your point of origin, all the while scanning the trees and bushes from eye level up.

Man’s Best Friend There is no arguing that hunting with a bird dog greatly reduces losses of downed birds. However, as luck dictates, the dog is not always present at the shot. Your finder skills will greatly enhance the dog’s chances of locating the bird at this point. Combine your skills with the “dead bird” point of your dog and the two of you will be a keen dead bird down finding machine.

Final Shots Days afield are too few. Our passions for new bird hunting memories drive us to the fields and forests when the time is right. Like a fine wine, a quality bird hunt must be nurtured from beginning to end. That includes the patience and ethics to execute a follow up after the shot. As the old adage says, “A bird in hand is worth two in the bush.” And the succulent meat of our game birds compliments a fine wine perfectly. Bill Cooper Bird hunting is an exciting outdoor pursuit. Ethically, hunters are obliged to make every effort to find a downed bird. (Photo: Ron Kruger)



Outdoor News

Don't Miss Your Chance to Stay in a Premium Yurt


njoy an alternative lodging experience at Table Rock State Park in the premium yurt. A yurt is a circular structure with a fabric cover, much like a tent, and a wooden frame making it strong and weathertight. The yurt is available for rent year-round and is accessible to persons with disabilities. The nightly rate is $129 plus tax. Rates are for 1-6 occupants. The yurt is in Campground 2 and includes: • Two bedrooms (one with a queen bed and one with twin bunkbeds) • Air Conditioning/heating • Full bathroom with tub/shower • Kitchen with electric stove/ oven, full-size refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker and toaster • Living Room (with a queen sleeper sofa) • Televisions that offer DIRECTV with local channels in the bedrooms and living rooms • Surrounding wooden deck with lake view • Locking door • Large sliding glass windows and a dome skylight • Picnic table, pedestal cooking grill, outdoor fire ring and lantern post • Designated parking for two vehicles • Linens are provided

Full payment for your stay will be due at the time you make the reservation. All reservations require a two-night minimum stay. Reservations including Friday night will require Saturday night stay. Holiday weekends require a three-night minimum stay of Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Pets are not allowed in the yurt. Check in is at 3 p.m. with check out by 11 a.m. Guests should check in at the campground office upon arrival. Tents or other alternate lodging accommodations are not allowed in the rental area. There are no telephones in the yurt. Clean up and trash removal is the responsibility of the lodging guest and should be completed before check out. Smoking is not allowed inside any lodging unit.

Release Courtesy of Missouri State Parks (Top) The yurt is fully equipped. For reservations visit (Photo: Scott Pauley) (Left) A premium yurt at Table Rock State Park in Branson. (Photo: Missouri State Parks)



Outdoor News

NFWF Announces More Than $3.7 Million in Grants from the Monarch Butterfly Conservation Fund


he National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) announced 23 grant awards totaling more than $3.77 million for projects to help conserve the monarch butterfly in North America. Grant recipients have committed $5.85 million in match, generating a total conservation impact of more than $9 million. The grants were awarded through the Monarch Butterfly Conservation Fund (MBCF), a public-private partnership administered by NFWF with support from Monsanto Company, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Geological Survey, the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. This is the third year the fund has administered grants. “The 2017 grants from the Monarch Butterfly Conservation Fund represent a continued commitment toward achieving the ultimate goal of restoring the monarch butterfly population to a sustainable level,” said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. “The projects include significant investments to advance vital habitat restoration and guide monarch recovery efforts across the country.” The 2017 grants will support projects that increase the quality and quantity of monarch breeding and overwintering habitat and enhance organizational capacity. Collectively, the funded projects will: • Restore and enhance over 43,000 acres • Collect more than 2,800 pounds of milkweed and other native forb seed • Propagate 131,000 native plant seedlings • Host approximately 210 workshops or webinars “The Monarch Butterfly Conservation Fund delivers tremendous support through partnership-focused conservation efforts to ensure a future filled with monarchs,” said Greg Sheehan, Principal Deputy Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “The 2017 grants will enable the Service, our partners, and the public to continue providing on-the-ground results that are vital for this species that is so important in our native ecosystems as well as to thousands of farmers who rely on pollinators to help provide food to the citizens of America.”

Native wildflowers help butterflies and provide good wildlife habitat. (Photo: Stevi Thompson)

The monarch butterfly is one of the most iconic species in North America and its annual migration cycle is one of the most remarkable natural phenomena in the world. However, over the past 20 years, the monarch butterfly population has declined by over 80 percent throughout much of its range. Primary factors include the loss of critical breeding and overwintering habitat. “I had the opportunity to visit the winter home of millions of monarch butterflies in west central Mexico this past year, which reinforced for me the importance of these grants,” said Robb Fraley, chief technology officer at Monsanto. “Agriculture and biodiversity depend on pollinators, and we’re pleased to see the progress this partnership has made creating quality habitat for the monarch’s annual migration and for the benefit of other species as well.” In 2015, NFWF established the MBCF, a public–private partnership that funds projects to protect, conserve and increase habitat for the monarch butterfly. By leveraging the resources and expertise of its partners, the MBCF is helping to reverse recent population declines and ensure the survival of the monarch butterfly. Release Courtesy of NFWF NOVEMBER - 2017


Feature Story

An Ancient Scaup Camp


caup numbers are down now. But reflect on a time when shooting a limit of this remarkable duck was acceptable. This hunt took place in the early 1970’s on Lewis and Clark State Park’s Sugar Lake south of St. Joseph, MO. Sadly, migration patterns and dry weather conditions have made this once productive duck hunting lake less productive today. Strings of scaup stretched across the horizon. Each approaching duck appeared to bounce up and down in the heavy northwest winds as blasts of winter stung our faces while peeking at the oncoming flock. The ducks were flying low and straight at our blind, making me wonder if our Victor D-9 decoys were pulling them in or if they were just looking for a quiet place to set down. I occasionally peeked outside the blind and hoped that concrete blocks and iron bars anchoring six-dozen duck decoys bobbing in heavy waves would not lose their cords.



Constant pounding of wind and waves were powerful and we figured to lose more decoys before the storm ended. For the time being our plastic flock was pulling in ducks. “Man,” I whispered. “There must be 50 scaup in that string.” My partner, Fred Simmerman, did not answer. He just watched, fascinated. We waited for the ducks to fly closer before pulling out our wooden duck calls. A few easy clucks with feeder chuckles turned the flock into a series of tight turns around our blind. I could feel their eyes boring down as they made a second lap, their wings creating an addictive whistling noise while fighting brisk wind gusts. Simmerman looked at the sky, smiling. So, did I. I felt a bit anxious that morning while stepping into the bow of Simmerman’s 14-foot flat-bottomed boat. After all, we were pushing off into a Missouri white-capping oxbow lake with a significant winter storm approaching. Huge black cloud rolled towards us, providing the type of threats that send sane people to shelters.

Feature Story A northwest wind pushed against the side of our boat while Simmerman’s 25-horsepower Mercury gave all it had, but barely provided enough power against the merciless wall of wind and waves. Sheets of frigid Missouri River water flew over the bow and lashed our faces. We were determined to reach our duck blind sitting in the middle of this ancient oxbow lake that was discovered by Lewis and Clark as noted in their journal. This late-November winter storm would push most ducks south and this last duck hunt would likely be good. Simmerman’s boat managed to reach the sturdy blind that was anchored down by four large posts driven in mud and sand bottom. Heavy wooden panels formed together for the sides, combined with grass and canvas covering the top with a front opening that allowed a shooting port. The boat was tied off under the blind. The flock continued to make passes around our blind, seeming convinced that our spot was safe. The ducks were probably trying to decide if they wanted to join the flock of idiots bobbing around in frigid waters. “I think they are getting ready to move on, Simmerman whispered. “Let’s shoot on the next pass.” I agreed and waited. “Take em,” and we stood up as cold wind and moisture pelted our faces. I took careful aim at the lead bird and lightly squeezed the trigger of my 870 Wingmaster propelling a load of #4 led shot. The scaup tumbled into our decoys. The flock quickly realized their mistake and total confusion broke out across the sky. BOOM! BOOM! Simmerman dumped a second and third scaup into the lake. We carefully slipped through a cut-out hole in the blind floor and stepped into the boat minutes later. We had three ducks floating and had to act quickly. The persistent northwest wind would quickly bob our ducks out of sight to be lost forever. Our 25-horespower motor sputtered to life and I pushed us out from the blind’s boat tunnel. Simmerman gunned the motor and soon our bow was pushing against the white-capping lake. Chasing those bobbing ducks was an adventure. We killed those birds and were determined not to lose them. My imagination wandered to how members of Lewis and Clark’s group would have loved to dine on those scaup.

Simmerman brought me back to the present with a command to get ready. I glanced up and saw a scaup floating high on the waves. I reached down and picked up the dead duck. We didn’t have to slow down for this retrieve. The other ducks were picked up as easily and we turned back towards the blind. We climbed back into the blind. All equipment was secure and a taste of hot chocolate from Simmerman’s thermos, a Hershey bar and a ripe apple picked from a nearby orchard was just the needed treat. My mind started to wander again. Surely Lewis and Clark must have been wintered north of here by this time. If not, they would have liked this area because of waterfowl that slipped in and out of the little oxbow. They could have found plenty of deer, turkey or small game in nearby woods after the waterfowl pushed south. Simmerman woke me out of my daydream with welcome words for any waterfowl hunter. “HERE THEY COME!” I glanced out of the blind’s front window to find another huge flock of scaup bearing down on us. But this flock was winging on the edge of a huge snow squaw. I knew our decoys were working this time. The flock wanted to splash down and made a brief pass before setting their wings to land around our decoys. We both jumped up before duck feet touched cold lake water. My first shot dropped a drake and two more shots only touched falling snow. Simmerman’s only shot dropped another drake. We retrieved both ducks and were thinking about calling it a day. The snow was falling harder and we were chilled to the bone. Visibility was limited to almost nothing and we could no longer see incoming ducks. Old Missouri River water splashed in my face as we plowed home through white capping waves and a wall of falling snow that stung bare skin. A pot of clam chowder and a wood burning stove waited for us. I tried to imagine what type of stew waited for Lewis and Clark’s boys after a cold day, perhaps deer, hoot owl and sparrow or maybe duck. I only knew that we were cold and happy to sit beside that potbellied stove after another memorable day on the oxbow. Kenneth Kieser The author in 1971 with a brace of oxbow bluebills. He was still frowning from the chilling boat ride. (Photo: Fred Simmerman)



Outdoor News

Give It New Life. Recycle with AMR


dvantage Metals Recycling (AMR) is Kansas and Missouri’s largest scrap recycler. AMR buys common steel and metal items for recycling, such as aluminum cans, appliances, lawn furniture, lawn mowers, old automobiles, pots and pans, home siding, aluminum windows, stainless steel (including the kitchen sink), and copper or brass plumbing fixtures faucets and fittings. AMR will sort and package these items so they can be recycled by a steel mill, foundry or smelter for eventual use in another product, and not be landfilled. Advantage Metals Recycling was formed in 1977 as Galamba Metals Group, headquartered in Kansas City. Galamba Metals Group was purchased and renamed Advantage Metals Recycling in 2008 and is wholly owned by The David J. Joseph Company (DJJ), based in Cincinnati, Ohio. AMR operates 11 recycling facilities in Kansas and Missouri. • Metal recycling is the most sustainable form of recycling. Unlike some paper and plastic items, metal items can be recycled an unlimited amount of times, but once it is in the landfill, the metal is probably gone forever. Over 70 million tons of scrap are recycled in the U.S. annually and two out of three pounds of steel made in the U.S. are manufactured using recycled metal. Recycling one ton of steel conserves 2,500 lbs. of iron ore, 21,400 lbs. of coal and 120 lbs. of limestone, helping to preserve and protect our environment. AMR recycled over 400,000 gross tons of scrap over the last year. That represents over 900 million pounds of scrap metal that was diverted from a landfill! Individuals and businesses can bring their metal items to any one of our eleven locations. The items will be weighed on certified scales and payment will be made at the same time.



AMR buys commons steel and metals items for recycling, including cars and trucks. (Photo: Courtesy of AMR)

To ensure the best service possible, please call 816861-2700 and we can direct you to the closest and most convenient location, as well as give guidance on the environmental, documentation and vehicle title guidelines for each type of material. Photo I.D.’s are required for all transactions. It’s easy to sell AMR your recyclable metal items. Give us a call or visit our website, then visit our locations and experience a new way to live a Green Life. Want more information? Contact us at Info@ Employment Information: Advantage Metals Recycling employs 300, and is always looking for quality employees to join our team. Visit our website to learn about current opportunities:

Outdoor News

Kansas City Zoo Supports Global Conservation


lephant Team Lead, Katie Muninger, visited Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia this summer working with the conservation organization, Conservation Lower Zambezi as well as the Department of National Parks and Wildlife. In partnership with International Elephant Foundation, we sent Katie over with 16 trail cameras, 32 memory cards, 25 packs of rechargeable batteries and 2 battery chargers to monitor wildlife. Katie worked in the field setting up cameras and reviewing footage. The data being collected from these trail cams will be used to better understand and track wildlife activity in the area. While working with CLZ and DNPW, Katie also had the privilege to participate in the release of a highly endangered pangolin. In addition to the trail camera project, the Kansas City Zoo also supports one Luangwa patrol team-- rations, salaries, medical equipment, movements, fuel etc.

Each Luangwa team, consisting of 5-6 Wildlife Police Officers, is stationed at an operating base where they are supplied with rations and patrol equipment and goes on patrol on 15 days on average in the park. Each visit to the Kansas City Zoo supports conservation initiatives at home and abroad. Visit the Zooâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s three black rhinos today!

Release Courtesy of the Kansas City Zoo (Photos: Katie Muniger, KC Zoo)



Feature Story

Fly-In Wilderness Fishing Trip Surpasses Expectations


even days in a wilderness paradise catching more fish than most would believe possible surrounded by scenery no photographer could justify leaves one longing for extended simplicity. Back in the world, surrounded once again by constant distraction, I’ll draw upon the week in which the biggest decisions were bacon or sausage for breakfast, and should we first fish for walleye or northern pike. My dad, myself and six other men took float planes into Opasquia Provincial Park in extreme northern Ontario. We booked with Big Hook Wilderness Camps. It was the best fishing in the most pristine setting I've ever experienced. A dream trip. One I hope to make again. Getting to our lake was no easy task. We drove to Red Lake, Ontario, which is about five hours north of International Falls, Minnesota where we crossed the border. You do need a passport to enter Canada these days, but our crossings were simple. We experienced



friendly border guards coming and going with no searches of our vehicles. As we headed north in Canada, we did pass a checkpoint where vehicles were stopped and searched heading back south. Break no rules and you’ll have no problems. After staying the night in Red Lake, we took a small plane that carried all eight of us to Sandy Lake First Nation, an Oji-Cree Reservation. From there, we divided into three float planes that took us to camp. The lake was gorgeous. Thousands of acres of pristine water engulfed by pine and birch forest. Wildlife was everywhere. Bald Eagles, both mature and juvenile, were constantly in view. We watched from close range as a moose calf rode on its mother’s back as she swam across a cove. Too many islands to count, deep water, shallow reefs, massive weed beds, rapids and waterfalls all combined to give us options for fishing. All of which produced.

Feature Story Our abode was little more than a shack. A cabin constructed with bare minimum quality of craftsmanship. A 1x4 ridge board was installed where at minimum a 2x6 should have been. Yet, the cabin has stood for more than 30 years, and held up during a storm I feared would rip the roof off. We had solar power backed up by a generator, a shower with hot water, and all the necessary cooking appliances. The outhouse served its purpose, but no one lingered to read a magazine. The cabin was fine, but might be rough for anyone not looking for adventure. Camp included three 14-foot Lund v-bottoms boats outfitted with 15-horsepower 4-stroke Yamahas and one 20-footer with a 20-horse. My dad and I were given the larger boat to help appease his lack of fishing experience. These basic crafts served us well, proving one does not need to invest tens-ofthousands of dollars in a fancy boat to catch fish. My tackle box was mostly a waste of space. When I return, I’ll take only the essentials, including ¼ ounce jig heads in chartreuse and hot pink, and a number of large bucktails, spoons and swimbaits. Line should be stout for northern. I fished 20-pound braid with a steel leader. For walleye, lighter monofilament is fine. Bring at least two more rods than you think you’ll need. Keep two rigged for walleye and two rigged for northern. Accidents happen. On this trip, I reared back to throw a bucktail and the giant treble hook snagged my favorite walleye rod. Before I realized what was happening, I had heaved it high overhead into the water with no hope of retrieval. Then while trying to unstick a jig head in shallow water between two rocks, I snapped the tip off my remaining walleye rod. I finished the trip with six-inches trimmed from the top. We ate like kings. One of the guys on this adventure was making his 25th or so trip. He knew what to bring. We had prime rib, New York strips, giant burgers, pork chops and more. Each dinner included a healthy portion of fresh, fried walleye. Every morning, a big breakfast was made and devoured before anyone went fishing.

Brandon Butler hoisting a 37 inch northern pike. (Photo: Bart Somers)

There was no need to go out too early. When you have thousands of acres of water to yourself, you don’t have to worry about someone setting up in your spot. And the fish bit all day long. Bring good food. It enhances the pleasure of the trip. If you have ever thought you might enjoy a flyin fishing trip to a remote northern destination, I’m here to tell you, do it. This trip ranks right up there with the greatest I have ever been on, and I’m not just talking about the fact that I was fortunate enough to spend time with my father and our friends. I’m talking about the fishing. I’ve never experienced fishing like this. It was beyond my imagination. Brandon Butler Executive Director, CFM (Left) Float planes are the only way to get to the wilderness camp. (Photo: Brandon Butler)



Outdoor News

Rifle Reloading with Starline


tarline Brass has recently incorporated the addition of rifle brass to their product offerings. Starline is now producing .308 WIN, .358 WIN, .444 Marlin, .338 Federal, .243 WIN, .300 Blackout, 6.5 Creedmoor, .450 Bushmaster, 7mm-08, and .260 Rem. Until recently, Starline has predominately produced brass for handgun calibers, with the exception of a few straight-walled rifle cases, such as the 45-70. Starline currently offers over 80 different calibers, but that number will grow quickly as new rifle and handgun calibers are added to their product line. “Our customers have been asking us to produce rifle brass for years,” said Robert Hayden, Jr., Vice President of Starline. “With our recent plant expansion and investment in building new equipment and tooling, we are proud to make Starline rifle cases a reality.” “We know we wouldn’t be here without our loyal customers and employees,” Hayden continued. “They have made achieving these milestones possible, and we’re very grateful for them.” Not a cartridge reloader? Try it today! Reloading your own ammunition can save you money, allow you to customize your loads and can be a great skill for shooters to have. Safety is always the most important thing to consider. Do lots of research, work with an experienced mentor if you can and follow a trusted reloading manual. Starline is a family owned business that prides itself on producing the highest quality brass cases available. For more than 40 years, Starline’s unique manufacturing process and commitment from their team of employees has distinguished Starline from the competition.



Starline Brass is the maker of America's finest brass cases for reloading ammunition. (Photo: Starline Brass)

Starline Brass is a Conservation Federation of Missouri Business Alliance member and supporter of other charitable organizations both locally and across the country. Remember, A Great Shot Starts with Starline. To see Starline’s full line of high quality cartridge brass, visit

Outdoor News

Tips for Processing Deer in Warm Weather from G&W Meats


&W Meats is the premiere meat processor in the greater St. Louis area. The current shop owners, cousins Bob and Gerhard Wanninger, are descendants of Helmut and Henry Wanninger, brothers who emigrated from Regensburg, Germany to St. Louis in 1965. Helmut and Henry were the sons of a 2nd generation German Sausage Meister in Bavaria. Under their lead, G & W has grown to provide over 30 different varieties of Bavarian-style sausage, from bratwurst and liverwurst to their locally famous Landjager beef stick. Bob Wanninger is a longtime hunter and in 1995 incorporated deer processing into G&W Meats. For two weeks during hunting season, the store closes down their retail processing facility to only process deer. In a typical year G&W will process 1,500 to 1,600 deer. They also have experience in processing other wild game, such as elk, bear, alligator, and geese for clients. As an avid deer hunter, Bob understands the importance of properly caring for your harvested deer. Weather in Missouri is quite variable, so during hotter hunting days, hunters need to take the necessary precautions to ensure meat doesn’t spoil. Here are Bob’s top tips to ensuring cleaner, fresh meat for the highest quality table fare. 1. Opening the body cavity up as soon as possible to release heat build up. In warmer weather, the chance for meat to spoil is very high. Letting deer lay overnight in the field or driving them around to show friends increases the risk of spoilage. Bob recommends field dressing the animal as soon as possible. 2. Cool the deer down quickly. Even a deceased deer will produce heat, Bob recommends getting your deer on ice to help the cooling process. When hunting keep bags of ice available in a cooler to put in the cavity.

3. Clean your deer. Blood is your enemy when processing meat, and if blood is left in the cavity, bacteria will start to grow quickly, tainting the meat. Wash the inside of the cavity with water (even a few water bottles). Make sure all the organs are out, including the trachea. Bob recommends using game bags, because it helps keep bugs, dirt and weather off the meat. 4. For safety purposes and for more efficient butchering, use the sharpest knife you have available. This helps make cleaner cuts on the meat and not your hand. 5. If possible, age your deer. Aging wild game breaks down the muscle tissue to provide more tender cuts. However, it’s important to keep it in a safe zone, which is between 34-37 degrees. For deer hunters looking to have their deer processed in the St. Louis area, G&W is now offering a secure deer drop off trailer for hunters who get out of the field later. Additionally, G&W is a business alliance member and participates in Share The Harvest for those that want to help feed the needy. Contact G&W Meats at (314) 352-5066 for more information. Rehan Nana Director of Corporate Relations A white-tailed deer buck stands among tall grasses.
(Photo: MDC)



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Feature Story

Harvesting Mature Bucks


onsistently taking mature bucks out of your hunting area is not an accident. Hours of work and planning go into it. The deer hunting community is divided on what hunting philosophy is best to live by–shoot whatever you have an opportunity at, known by many as “brown it’s down;” or, wait for an old, mature buck. If you take the latter approach, this article is for you.



There is something about taking mature bucks that lives in our bones. There is nothing else in the world like it. It is not so much the physical killing of a mature buck, but rather the steps we take to do it, that has us stricken. The entire process, from start to finish, takes considerable skill, patience, elbow grease, and will power.

Feature Story It is much different than sitting in the woods hoping a big buck walks by your location. Gathering as much intelligence, preparing as best you can, and striking when your targets are most vulnerable is key. It takes an elite hunter to successfully follow this process all the way to success.

#1: Reduce Human Pressure For anyone pursuing old, mature bucks, this is the number one thing you can do to increase your chances of success. This tenet has many facets, but the simple idea is to keep as much human influence out of your deer hunting area as possible. That means becoming a ghost, giving them very little chance of seeing or smelling you not just during deer season, but all year round. Many steps can be taken to eliminate human pressure. Scent elimination showers, hunting stands when the wind is right, and refraining from driving vehicles deep into your property are all rules we practice meticulously. If the deer, especially the mature bucks, feel safe and secure in your hunting area, the odds will be pushed in your favor.

#2: Prepare Preparation is key to being consistently successful at anything in life. Harvesting mature bucks is not for the faint of heart, and you must prepare as much as possible for the eventual moment of truth. It’s hard to wrap your mind around it, but hours of work months in advance can mean the difference in being successful or not in one short moment. Continual preparation involves many aspects, but often trivial, simplistic tasks can make the difference. Shooting your bow, clearing shooting lanes, planting food plots, adjusting stands, planning stand routes, and checking cameras intelligently all give you better odds of harvesting a mature buck. Thomas Jefferson once said “I’m a great believer in luck. And I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.” Hunters who harvest mature bucks are often scorned as lucky or in a “great situation” nobody else has. Maybe, just maybe, they are lucky at times. But I’m willing to bet they make their own luck.

#3: Execute Success all comes down to you as a hunter and whether you’re able to get it done when the time comes to get out and hunt. Heightened skills of woodsmanship combined with hunting hard at the right times for your hit list bucks are what it takes. Generally, the October 25 through November 10 time frame is the best time to be in the woods when you’re north of the MasonDixon Line. The bucks are typically starting to move and begin seeking more during daylight in that time. But, just because it is a good time to hunt doesn’t mean you should sit in a particular location. Wind direction might be bad, blowing into a bedding area or major travel corridor. You may spook deer on the way to the stand. The buck might not be in the area according to your cameras. The point is, you must hunt hard and hunt smart. You want to hunt because you know the chances of success are stacked in your favor. Pay attention to these aspects, make sure your bow is accurate, and when it is time to let your arrow fly, all that’s left to do is follow the blood trail. Ryan Miloshewski (Left) Tyler Mahoney’s 2013 buck. (Photo: Ryan Milowshewski) (Top) The Elite Hunter Series is all about helping you kill old, mature bucks like this one. (Photo: Courtesy of Ryan Milowshewski)



Feature Story

An Outdoor Trip in the Rockies


ursuing elk in Colorado is more than just about the hunt. To say the least, it’s an adventure all its own. I have hunted, fished and trapped just about everything there is to pursue in Missouri and around the Midwest, but had not yet experienced elk hunting in the Rocky Mountains. So, when Jim Keeven, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s Co-Chairman of the Lewis and Clark Chapter said he was wanting to get an archery hunting trip together I was ecstatic to finally get out and get this experience firsthand.

The area the author hunted and fished in. It provided opportunities for many outdoor activities. (Photo: Courtesy of Tyler Schwartze)



The sheer magnitude of God’s creation and the beauty of these mountains over country that we have traversed cannot easily be described. You can watch all the YouTube video’s there are out there about elk hunting, and believe me I tried, but none of them will prepare you for the rugged, sheer beauty that the mountains showcase. It's truly a wonder you ever come upon these elusive animals within bow range at all. Luckily, we were in a great area with little pressure so we had some heartpumping encounters. The second night Jim slipped up on a bull, gave him a couple cow calls, and brought him right in on a string. His shot was spot on and we had fresh, melt in your mouth, grilled inner loin the following night for supper.

Feature Story Our cabin at the base of our secluded mountain was around 9,500 feet. Although we had all the luxuries of life including a hot shower and home cooked meals each night the weather is very unpredictable. We experienced snow, sleet, hail, rain and wind. Due to the lack of humidity precipitation usually dissipated quickly. Physical conditioning and emergency preparedness is a must. All the training I did before the trip paid off and added to my experience. One of the first clear nights we spent in a spike camp in the high country. We slept on the ground under a tarp and I loved every minute of it. I’ll admit I was a little nervous at first to do this but it ended up being a moment I will not soon forget. The vantage point that we had of the stars that night was simply breathtaking. I never realized how much elk rely on their keen sense of smell. All the hunting revolves around wind speed and direction. A couple nights later only a slight swirling wind prevented me from sticking a giant 6-point herd bull at 15 yards away. I swear that bull was the size of a S-10 pickup truck at that short distance. It was my first close encounter and I am forever hooked on this sport. However, the hunting and the pursuit is only a small part of this addicting experience. The men that I shared camp with even added more to this grandeur trip. David, Jim, Matt and Mike were nothing short of great Christian human beings and I am lucky to call them my friends. We spent time hiking, hunting, fly fishing, eating a ton, but most importantly, laughing and having a grand time. Over the course of the trip we had encountered moose, bear, elk, grouse, mule deer, and rainbow trout. By the last week of season the wives were in camp with us. The aspens were in peak fall color and the rut was in full swing. My wife Michelle was with me on a cool, misty morning when we slipped in the dark timber with a couple bugling bulls and their cows.

The group during an afternoon hunt. (Photo: Courtesy of Tyler Schwartze)

The numerous hair-raising screams these creatures made at such a short distance from us was the greatest sound I have ever heard since hearing my children wail in their first few breaths after being born. We called in a bull to less than 15 yards but couldn’t quite get a shot. You can’t imagine how thick the timber is in places and hard to get an open shot. To have two epic encounters that close and not get a shot was a little frustrating yet still exhilarating at the same time. It’s truly a cat-and-mouse game that I equate much like Missouri turkey hunting. Given the fact that many elk hunters don’t even get a close encounter let alone see or hear one of these animals. It was a success of sorts for all of us solely based on the opportunities that everyone had. I cannot wait until the day when Missouri has their first elk season. I know I will be one of the first hunters to put in for a tag. Until then you won’t have to twist my arm to head out to spend some time chasing them in the mountains out west. If you ever get a chance to experience the mountains and hunt these magnificent creatures you won’t be disappointed. I guarantee it! Tyler Schwartze CFM Events Manager





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November 2017 vol 78 no 6  
November 2017 vol 78 no 6