This past month we premiered our seventh episode of Leopold Live!: Chapter 2 with our wonderful partners at the Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve, and we truly enjoyed connecting with you to talk about private land stewardship here in Texas. In this latest episode we spoke with Bamberger’s ranch manager, Steven Fulton, about herbicides and brush management and how this tool can help you manage wildlife habitat on your landscape.
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Lights, camera, Leopold Live! Last month we premiered the fourth episode of Leopold Live!: Chapter 2 with our incredible partners at Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve, and we truly enjoyed getting to share even more about wildlife management practices through this series. Our hosts, Dr. Roel Lopez and Dr. April Sansom, introduced this new chapter of Leopold Live! and explained how new episodes will be a little different from what we covered in Chapter 1.
Lights, camera, Leopold Live! Last month we premiered our third episode of Leopold Live!: Chapter 2 with our incredible partners at Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve, and we truly enjoyed getting to share more about wildlife management practices through the series.
Conservation efforts often focus on large properties with thousands of acres of potential habitat. That focus is understandable, given the impact that effective stewardship of those holdings can have.
Lights, camera, Leopold Live! Last month we premiered our second episode of Leopold Live!: Chapter 2 with our incredible partners at Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve, and we truly enjoyed connecting with you again as we continue with the series. Our usual hosts, Dr. Roel Lopez (TAMU NRI) and April Sansom (Bamberger Ranch), opened the episode by introducing this new chapter of Leopold Live! and explaining how these upcoming episodes will be a little different from what we covered Chapter 1.
We've officially kicked off filming for Leopold Live!: Chapter 2 and we're excited to give you a behind-the-scenes peek at what's coming up in the next few months from new stewardship practices to practical knowledge to keep in your back pocket.
Texas Brigades is accepting applications for its summer Brigade Camps. Applications are due online by March 15.
Just like old times, only different. Adjusting to social distancing measures allowed us to think creatively in how we approach our engagement and education work, and partnering with the Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve was a smart match for our team and like-minded missions—educating land stewards by demonstration and practice.
In the book “Texas Quails,” the authors discuss the scientific aspects of quail management and highlight four knowledge-based tenets which should inform any quail management decision. These “pillars of knowledge” include r-selection, successional affiliation, adaptive plasticity, and weather influences. In this new blog series, we will look at each of these pillars individually and explain why they should be the fundamental tools for any quail-minded manager.
In Game Management, Aldo Leopold wrote, “Are we too poor in purse or spirit to apply some of it to keep the land pleasant to see, and good to live in?” This conveys a simple truth for both green and veteran landowners: land management may require hard work, but generates value for the land and our spirits. The most effective land management is that which is intentional.
Through a partnership between the Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute and the Texas Longleaf Taskforce, a counterpart of the America’s Longleaf Restoration Initiative working to restore longleaf pine ecosystems on private and public forestlands in Texas, the Landowner Longleaf Challenge launched in March of this year gaining an unrivaled momentum over the last 5 months.
As a new landowner, it is crucial to keep wildlife top-of-mind when developing land management plans. This requires knowing which species are present on a particular tract of land, as well as understanding the relationship each species has with its habitat and the ways in which it sculpts the landscape.
After reviewing the complexities of soil management, gaining knowledge about vegetation is the next crucial step in a new landowner’s management education. Let's dive into the different plant ID resources at your disposal and take an intentional look at the uses of vegetation for wildlife and practical ways to manage your property to encourage the right kind of plant growth.
Private Land Stewardship is a core component of our mission at the NRI, and our goal is to provide landowners with the resources they need to better care for their land. For new or future landowners, the best time to gather knowledge and information is before making management decisions that will have lasting effects on the land. Thinking of well-managed land conjures up images of lush, green fields and healthy wildlife populations, but it is important to stop and consider where it all begins—with the cultivation of healthy soils.
NRI’s wild pig reporting web-page, developed by the institute’s data analytics team, provides a unique portal for data to be reported not only in Texas, but anywhere wild pigs are observed.
The Texas Longleaf Taskforce launched a campaign to reach more Texas forest landowners looking to bring back the longleaf pine by connecting to longleaf resource specialists.
Not surprisingly, about 94% of Texas is privately owned—84% of that land is considered working lands (farm, range and timberland) making private landowners the stewards with the largest influence over natural resources compared to public lands. As we watch Texas experience the largest inter-generational change in landownership ever experienced, how landowners continue the legacy of land management is up to them, making education the first priority.
As fall hunting season in Texas rapidly approaches, it may be time to evaluate the quality of your Rio Grande Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo intermedia) habitat and determine the health on your land.
If you have no choice but to collide with a deer in the road, what steps do you need to take next?
Wild pigs (Sus scrofa) are a growing concern across the country, and, unfortunately, Texas seems to have the largest population over other states. Landowners, producers and others concerned with minimizing damages associated with this exotic species often look to emerging technologies to reduce wild pig numbers.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service has developed a variety of resources, including a phone application to assist those with an interest in prescribed burning.
NRI's Josh Helcel and the wild pig team spoke with Susan Culp with the Texas Animal Health Commission to answer a few questions about the safety of bringing home the bacon. Click read more to watch the video.
Texas has over 142M acres of open lands (i.e., working lands) with the majority designated as grazing lands for various livestock. Texas leads the nation in sheep, goat and cattle production with over 94M head of cattle alone. Even with this strong representation, landowners often mix livestock production and wildlife management on the same property. Other landowners now primarily manage for wildlife on an additional 3.3M acres which helps maintain ecological functions of the state’s grasslands and forests. Given the preponderance of livestock and growing interest in wildlife management, it’s easy to understand why grazing management is essential for sustaining and improving open lands in Texas.
Coyotes are widely assumed to be a major threat to quail populations, but are such accusations warranted? It is hard to deny that these canine predators will eat an adult quail or snack on a clutch of eggs if the opportunity presents itself, but they may not be the malevolent quail-eaters that many believe them to be.
It is important as a landowner to know which wildlife species frequent your property and how to alter your management practices in order to benefit those animals. Gaining a better understanding of common wildlife as well as species you may never encounter will not only make you a more informed wildlife enthusiast, it can provide you with a well-rounded approach to private land stewardship. Most landowners commonly observe generalist species like white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginanus) or raccoons (Procyon lotor) on their property, but among the ecoregions of Texas there is vast diversity in habitat that many species call home.
There are many resources you can access to expand your knowledge of the species in your area, but few are more accessible than those on your phone. As citizen science continues to expand with the help of technology, apps are being developed with the sole purpose of helping amateur naturalists and landowners identify and better understand the plants and animals on their property.
The plant community on a property determines what habitat types are available for wildlife and how it can be grazed, so familiarity with those plants is essential for any land steward. Here we provide tips and tools that will help you learn to recognize your resident plant species and incorporate that knowledge into an effective management plan.
Soils are the foundation of healthy habitat and can make or break any land management plan. Regional differences in soil structure and composition play a major role in determining which management strategies will succeed or fail, and familiarity with your soil is the first step toward meeting your land stewardship goals. Here we provide contacts and resources to help you take that step.
A recent tax appraiser and tax assessor training for land management for wildlife and livestock was a success, according to Brian Hays, Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute (NRI) program manager.
“The 34 participants attending found the training useful and unanimously agreed the information presented would help them in their job,” Hays said.
At the Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute (NRI), promoting and supporting private land stewardship is a core part of our mission, values and daily work. So what does land stewardship actually involve?