Cover Art Description:
There are few animals more ubiquitous than the cottontail rabbit. Prolific breeders, they serve as food for raptors, wolves, coyotes, and a host of other predators, including humans, who often learned to hunt as children by pursuing rabbits. Rabbits are so common in fact that we tend to take them for granted, though they are a vital species in most North American ecosystems. The same could be said about the relation of wildlife to western history: the role of wild animals in the shaping of the West is so obvious that we tend to overlook the ways in which the region's fauna has transformed lives and cultural institutions. In this special issue devoted to wildlife and hunting, the painting on the front cover, Paul Bransom's Country Gentlemen (1924, gouache and charcoal, 20" x 16 1/4", courtesy JKM Collection, National Museum of Wildlife Art, Jackson, Wyoming) serves as a corrective to this oversight.
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