Texas Master Naturalists connect on conservation of quail and other Texas wildlife

The Texas Master Naturalist Meeting was a great opportunity to connect with people who are passionate about the conservation of quail and other Texas wildlife and to build awareness for upcoming events like Urban Quail Appreciation Day and Quail Masters 2018. Members had a chance to meet Kirby—some for the second time—and learn more about the assessment of fine-scale vegetation selection by northern bobwhite quail in Texas. 

Carter Smith talks about the Impact of the Texas Farm & Ranch Lands Conservation Program, Texas Agricultural Land Trust

In this Texas Agricultural Land Trust video, Carter Smith, Executive Director of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department explains the impact of the initial round of funding used to conserve working agricultural lands through the Texas Farm & Ranch Lands Conservation Program which provides grants for paid conservation easements to private land owners.

Who’s been sleeping in my cave?

Researchers studying the impact of small mammals on cave habitats with endangered invertebrate species got a prickly surprise when they discovered large numbers of porcupines parading in and out of dozens of caves in the San Antonio area.

Three Military Bases, Ranges Added to Sentinel Landscape Partnership

The U.S. Departments of Defense (DoD), Agriculture and the Interior today announced the addition of three military bases to the Sentinel Landscape Partnership, a conservation effort begun in 2013 to improve military readiness, protect at-risk and endangered species, enhance critical wildlife habitat and restore working agricultural and natural lands in the Southeast and Midwest.

Partnership provides agricultural landowners conservation assistance in Nueces River Basin

Agricultural landowners and land managers in the 15-county region of the Nueces River basin have the opportunity to receive technical and financial assistance to help protect, improve and enhance their agricultural lands. Through this conservation stewardship, landowners will reduce runoff from their land and helping improve the water quality and quantity that flows into the Gulf of Mexico.

Testing the toughest plants for drought tolerance

A nine-month drought of epic proportion begins Saturday. This one, however, is restricted to a small plot of land in southern San Antonio that the Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources (IRNR) uses for research. When the scientific findings become available about a year from now, they should be a boon to home and business owners who want lovely landscapes that require little or no watering.

Lead vs. steel? It's a draw in dove study shootout

Results released this week of a multiyear, peer-reviewed research project, conducted in Texas, indicate dove hunters using shotshells loaded with lead pellets enjoy no advantage in effectiveness over those using shotshells firing non-toxic steel pellets of similar or slightly larger size.

Conserving private lands conserves water

Former President and Texas native Lyndon B. Johnson once said: “Saving the water and the soil must start where the first raindrop falls.”

In Texas, where about 95 percent of the land is privately owned, and 83 percent of that land is rural farms, ranches and forests, it is essential that all Texans understand the interconnection of land and water to ensure the healthy stewardship of both, according to natural resource professionals.

In Perfect Harmony: Fort Bragg

Fort Bragg covers over 160,00 acres and is home to over 57,000 military personnel. If you think extraordinary training and military readiness are incompatible with a environmental protection and sustainability, think again. At Fort Bragg, the longleaf pine forests are flourishing and the training has never been better. Exploring North Carolina will show you this great American conservation story.

Mussels Matter: Research team increasing knowledge of mussels, txH2O

Though zebra mussels in Texas give mussels a bad name, other freshwater mussels are welcomed and needed in Texas waters.

Invasive zebra mussels, first confirmed in Texas in 2009, are causing major economic and environmental damages to Texas reservoirs. But unionid mussels, a family of freshwater mussels, are important indicators of water quality and stream health and play an important role in freshwater ecosystems, according to Dr. Charles Randklev, research scientist for the Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources (IRNR).

Prescribed fire community of practice goes live

Most plant communities across North America are adapted to fire, and many plant and wildlife species are dependent upon fire for their survival. Fire suppression following European settlement in North America has caused these areas to dramatically change. Grasslands and prairies are being invaded by trees; savannas and open woodlands are becoming closed canopy forests; and prairie birds are declining with some species now threatened or endangered. It is critical that fire be restored to create and maintain the conditions necessary for the survival of our native plants and wildlife. Prescribed fire, sometimes also known as controlled burning, is the way land managers safely and effectively get fire back into these natural areas.

Clean air, clean technology take hold in South Texas

Increased production and economic stimulus are two of the most talked about outcomes emanating from South Texas' Eagle Ford shale. Given the arid region, water management has become a top priority for both operating companies and community stakeholders. In states where drilling activity is a fairly new commodity, hydraulic fracturing garners most of the attention. In the rapidly developing South Texas Eagle Ford, air quality is on the minds of both regulators and companies working the play.

Turkey hunting: What the biologists can teach you

A new generation of wild-­turkey researchers is seeking to answer questions about turkey population declines, habitat preferences, and geographic distribution. Their findings will influence turkey management for decades to come. But hunters can learn from them right now about where and how to hunt our most evasive gobblers.

Prescribed Burning School dates set for 2013

The Academy for Ranch Management has set the dates in 2013 for their annual Prescribed Burning School and Advanced Prescribed Burning School at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research-Sonora Station located on State Highway 55 between Sonora and Rocksprings.

Texas A&M IRNR researchers give presentations on GCWA research

The 2013 Golden-cheeked Warbler Symposium was held on January 25, 2013 in Austin, Texas, and was hosted and sponsored by Biodiversity Works. The symposium was also sponsored by Bandera Corridor Conservation Bank, Texas A&M University Institute of Renewable Natural Resources, and Zara Environmental LLC.  The following is the list of presentations given at the 2013 Golden-cheeked Warbler Symposium.