Since its initial publication in 1959, The Wild Mammals of Missouri by Charles W. Schwartz and Dr. Elizabeth R. Schwartz has become the definitive guide to the identification of these animals, and it continues to be a source of abundant information about their lives. Charles Schwartz's meticulously rendered drawings capture the spirit of his subjects while remaining technically accurate. The drawings range from full portraits to vignettes to illustrations of skulls, tracks, and other identifying characteristics. The enormous popularity of The Wild Mammals of Missouri as a college textbook and general reference and a desire to contain the most accurate information led to two previous revisions – the first (in 1981) edited by both authors and the second (in 2001) edited by Elizabeth Schwartz. Scientists and enthusiasts lost two great conservationists when Charles died in 1991 and Elizabeth in 2013.
Debby K. Fantz, resource scientist with the Missouri Department of Conservation, and Dr. Victoria L. Jackson, associate professor with the University of Central Oklahoma, have worked to ensure that The Wild Mammals of Missouri will continue to educate, delight, and inspire with this third revised edition. These two mammalogists have over fifty years' combined experience conducting surveys and research, leading trapping workshops, designing distribution models, identifying mammals, and teaching courses in mammalogy and wildlife conservation and management.
The Wild Mammals of Missouri has grown from sixty-three full species accounts in the first edition to seventy-two in this third revised edition. The editors have maintained the basic structure of The Wild Mammals of Missouri while adding much new information, including a full account for the elk with artwork by Mark Raithel, new trapping records, revised common and scientific names, enhanced Missouri county-level distribution information, updated range maps, and a discussion of the range expansions of the American black bear and nine-banded armadillo, as well as the increase in confirmed mountain lion sightings.
Charles W. Schwartz (1914-1991) was with the Missouri Department of Conservation for forty years, serving as biologist, author, wildlife photographer, and wildlife artist. Elizabeth R. Schwartz (1912-2013) was employed with the Department of Conservation for over thirty years as biologist, author, and assistant in wildlife photography. Together this husband-and-wife team has written or illustrated thirteen other books and many technical papers for scientific journals and popular articles for magazines. They have also produced some twenty-four motion pictures and numerous TV programs, which have received both national and international awards.
"This scientific yet popular publication by Charles and Elizabeth Schwartz has been widely acclaimed as the definitive work on its subject."
– Larry R. Gale, former director of the Missouri Department of Conservation