Note to Our Readers

As I grew up in central Missouri I couldn’t wait for the next issue of the Conservationist. It brought interesting articles with information on how to do a range of outdoor activities and guides to places to go and things to see. Each edition held tales of conservation adventures that helped instill a solid conservation ethic in a rural farm kid.

The Department, the Conservationist and our employees are dedicated to serving hunters, fishermen, naturalists, students and any citizen who simply has an interest in Missouri’s natural resources. Our goal is to serve all Missourians by exposing them to the outdoors, educating them about conservation, offering ideas for new and exciting activities and encouraging them to be good stewards of our state’s resources.

When I visit with Missouri’s hunters and anglers they often tell me they would like to see more articles on hunting and fishing. Then a naturalist, or someone who simply enjoys nature, will request more articles on native plants and animals. It is a balance to serve all Missourians and provide natural resource information across a wide spectrum of individual interests and conservation ideals.

It’s a magazine whose pages are filled by professional and citizen writers alike. Anyone can submit an article or information to the Conservationist staff. Some great professional writers have written for the magazine and Department employees routinely submit articles about their varied areas of expertise. World class photographers provide stunning images that bring Missouri’s outdoors into our living rooms. Quality editors and countless professionals have helped produce the award-winning magazine over the years.

Important ideas and issues have graced its pages and well-known conservation leaders, such as Aldo Leopold, have provided material and thoughts to the magazine. Our most important contributors continue to be the “citizen conservationists” who work tirelessly to improve the magazine, the Department and our state’s natural resources.

The magazine continues to be free to Missouri residents and is mailed to approximately half a million people. Surveys indicate about 1.5 million people read the Conservationist every month. Missourians not only receive the magazine they support the publication by writing and submitting articles, sharing and implementing their conservation ideas and offering their positive criticism to improve the publication. As Mr. Stephens said in the very first issue, “suggestions as to the subject matter of future issues are solicited.” That statement is still true today as we look to citizens to help guide the magazine’s future. It truly is YOUR magazine and we encourage you to submit your thoughts, suggestions for improvement and ideas for articles. The “experiment” that started the Missouri Conservationist has evolved into a flagship publication that promotes conservation throughout Missouri and America.

Tim Ripperger, assistant director