I Am Conservation

“We are all very excited to have the elk back in Missouri, because it gives us the opportunity to explore wildlife on a new level,” says April Hayes (center), who, along with her husband, Derrick Hayes (left), their children, Cyrus, 8, and Prestyn, 4, and April Hayes’ sister, Michelle Backman (right) and her son, Harper, 6 months, recently went on an elk viewing trip to Peck Ranch Conservation Area. “The kids really enjoy driving down to Peck Ranch and participating in the adventure of trying to see the elk and hearing them bugle in the distance. Growing up in the Ozarks and Shannon County was a pleasure. As kids, we were able to appreciate the wonders of the outdoors and all it has to offer. Whether it was going to the river, hunting, fishing or just being outside, we always had fun and respected the area we lived in. Now that we have our own children, we are able to pass along that appreciation to them and continue that tradition of exploring the land and nature around us.” —Photo by David Stonner