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Tecomate Staff Biographies
David Morris | Gary Schwarz
David Morris » Tecomate VP, Founder, Partner
PODCAST: Versus County Interview with David Morris
David Morris grew up hunting and fishing in South Alabama. His love for the outdoors led him to get a master's degree in biology from Auburn University, where he worked summers and holidays as a professional bass guide on nearby Lake Eufaula. After graduation, David founded Georgia's Burnt Pine Plantation, a 14,000-acre commercial whitetail hunting operation, and served as its managing partner for 20 years, during which time he developed one of the most intensive quality buck management programs in the South, allowing his clients to harvest nearly 2,000 bucks.
In 1976, David and his partners founded Game & Fish Publications and ultimately grew the company to include 33 state and regional hunting and fishing magazines covering all Lower 48 states plus North American Whitetail, the nation's premier deer-only magazine. He served as editor and executive publisher until stepping away from day-to-day duties in late 1990 to write and lecture on hunting and whitetail management under the company name of Venture Press.
David has written three books on whitetail hunting. His first book, Hunting Trophy Whitetails, is widely acclaimed as the most complete book ever written on the subject. His second book, Advanced Strategies for Trophy Whitetails, is one of the all-time best selling hunting books. In addition to his countless articles published in North American Whitetail and Game & Fish magazines, David's articles have appeared in Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, Field & Stream and several other magazines. Additionally, he has published four other whitetail books – Hunting the Four Periods of the Rut by Mr. Idol, Great Whitetail Hunts, Legendary Whitetails and World Record Whitetails by Gordon Whittington. David has a passion for big whitetails and has hunted them successfully throughout North America and has amassed one of the largest collections of personally harvested trophy whitetails in the country.
In 1992, David bought a small ranch western Montana, and in 1998, he purchased 3000-acre El Cazador Ranch in South Texas. Using Tecomate Food Plots as the core of an intensive management program, David began growing lots of huge whitetails. Today, El Cazador is recognized as one on the top trophy whitetail ranches in the country and has been the subject of many magazine articles, TV shows and research projects.
In 2000, David joined forces with food plot pioneer Dr. Gary Schwarz to form Tecomate Wildlife Systems, a company literally forced into existence by the big bucks Gary and David were growing. Tecomate went on to become one of the nation’s largest suppliers of wildlife management services and products, including Tecomate Seed and the famous food-plot planting machine, Plotmaster. Tecomate continues to help managers and hunters throughout the county realize their deer hunting dreams.
The success of the Tecomate Management System and El Cazador Ranch has given David the opportunity to be a regular on many outdoor TV shows, including Realtree Outdoors, The Management Advantage, Gander Mountain’s “We Live Outdoors,” The World of Hunting and many others. In 2007, David and Tecomate partner, comedian Jeff Foxworthy, began hosting Tecomate’s own hunting show, The Bucks of Tecomate, on Versus Network. In its first year, the show was Versus’ highest rated program, and one particular show had the highest ratings ever for the network. David and Jeff also host Versus Whitetail Challenge, for which Tecomate is the title sponsor. Additionally, David is a regular field host for Versus’ Dangerous Game TV show filmed mostly in Africa.
David’s career and accomplishments are not the most important things in his life. His personal relationship with his Lord Jesus Christ holds that place, along with his love for his wife, Debra, and his three daughters, who all share his passion for the outdoors.
Dr. Gary Schwarz » Tecomate Partner
Born in 1952, Gary Schwarz grew up on his family’s South Texas farm, where he developed a deep love of wildlife and land. After completing his residency in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in 1983, Gary and seven friends purchased his first 1,000 acres of land, the beginning of what ultimately became the famous Tecomate Ranch. Gary and his partners placed the first Conservation Easement ever done in Texas on the initial property in 1986. Gary has also placed Conservation Easements on all his other acquisitions, protecting them in perpetuity from becoming anything other than what they are today – wildlife habitat.
Besides land conservation, Gary’s other consuming passion is wildlife management. Convinced he could use the farming knowledge he learned from his father and the research knowledge he learned in school to grow bigger deer on his property, Gary began to seek out the right forages and develop predictable dry land farming techniques in 1983. By 1989, he had perfected farming methods, discovered lablab and other new subtropical legumes and invented the reversible game-proof fence for food plots, opening the way for revolutionary food plot management for deer even in arid South Texas.
The results were spectacular! The unbelievable explosion in deer numbers, size (both antler size and body weights) and reproductive rates had never reported before. Word spread rapidly, aided by the scientific research done on his ranch by the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute. The Institute validated his results with three separate Master’s Degree thesis earned in two-year studies done by graduate students under the direction of Dr. Tim Fulbright. The results of each study were published in prominent scientific peer-reviewed journals, setting Tecomate’s work apart and establishing the credibility of the techniques Gary had pioneered.
The clamor among hunters and managers for information and seed literally forced Gary into the seed business in 1991, when Gary, Fred Schuster, and Dr. Fulbright started the original Tecomate Seed Company. Awards and acknowledgements began to follow, as Gary received the Wildlife Stewardship Award from the Wildlife Society, the first Lone Star Land Stewardship Award from the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, and the first Friend of Wildlife Award from the Texas Wildlife Association.
Among the many people Gary met as a result of his successes was his dear friend and business partner, David Morris. David shared Gary’s love of hunting and management, had had similar success in using food plots as the centerpiece of intensive whitetail management, and, most importantly, shared Gary’s love of family and Lord Jesus. Not long after the two met, David purchased neighboring El Cazador Ranch in 1998, and they joined together to form Tecomate Wildlife Systems in 2000, with the express purpose of helping others realize their dream of owning and managing their own property… for big deer!
Today, Gary is exploring new interests on two recently purchased ranches. On one, Gary is pushing the envelope on bass management. With five newly constructed lakes from 7 to 80 acres, Gary is developing forage production strategies that will take forage production (food sources) to an all new level, promising of more and bigger bass than ever thought possible. On the other property, Gary is taking upland game bird management to a new frontier and has turned unproductive county into a bird paradise supporting incredible dove populations and perhaps the highest density of wild bobwhite quail ever produced! Gary credits all of his successes to God and his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.