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 A Natural History of North Central Texas
Nature News and Events
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Spring Wing Ding 2016

  pochClick here for the Schedule  flit

Click here for the Workshop Detail

If you are a birder you wont want to miss this event!

Crosstimbers Connection

Connecting People with Nature
in North Texas

We want people to experience nature in ways that create enjoyment, understanding, and caring for the natural world. The best way to do this is to go see it and be right in the middle of it. But we can also bring a few animals and lots of pictures to show groups of people what it’s like. To talk with us about doing either one of those things, please go to the Contact Us page.

If you would like a copy of there great newsletter, “Frog Calls,” that contains information about their activities, coming events, and stories and pictures about nature in north Texas go to their web site and click Publications on the menu. You will be pleasantly surprised at the quality, detail and educational opportunity in this and other great publications. It’s available as a free download!

Tandy Hills hikeManly Men and Wild Women Hike the Hills

It's a new year and a new you. Time once again to test your mettle by participating in the... 6th Annual Manly Men Wild Women Hike the Hills There's nothing complicated about it. Just show up at Tandy Hills Natural Area, the coolest green space in the inner city, and enjoy the great out-of-doors. Our goal is to hike border-to border-to-border-to-border, tracing the steel cable that defines the 160 acre boundary.

Your rewards include but are not restricted to:

  1. You will lose at least 2 pounds. (They don't call it Tandy HILLS for nothing!)
  2. See sections of the park known only to a few hawks and a couple of scrawny coyotes.
  3. Celebrate the 53rd anniversary of the coolest park in Fort Worth.
  4. It won't kill you but will make you stronger (for the upcoming Brush Bash*)
  5. Work up a good appetite for a group lunch (TBA)

Who: Friends of Tandy Hills Natural Area

What: Manly Men & Wild Women Hike. All ages welcome. Leashed dogs welcome. (No wimps, please.)

When: January 1, 2015; 10:00 am (allow 1-1.5 hours for hike)

Where: Tandy Hills Natural Area, 3400 View Street, Meet at the Prairie Fest entrance

Why: For the fun and glory of it.

Bring: Water, snack, camera, hiking boots, hat.

RSVP:  to Don Young ASAP. donyoungglass@earthlink.net

Tandy Hills Natural Area
3400 View Street, Fort Worth, TX 76103
Parking on View St., Ben Street or Meadowbrook Drive

Tandy Hills Natural Area is a 160-acre nature preserve located just five miles from downtown Fort Worth containing more than 500 native plant species and known for its spectacular spring wildflower show.

More Information
web: www.tandyhills.org or email: info@tandyhills.org  phone: Don Young at 817-731-2787

Green Dallas

How green is our city? Dallas launches enviro-active web site.

Earth Day is Every Day. Environmental tips for all citizens; adults and kids.

North Texas Web Worm Infestations
Wed, 20 Jun 2007

Their webs look nasty and so does the damage they do but they are a bit hyped. They only attack specific trees and live for only a few weeks. In our region they have a preference for mulberry, sweetgum, and pecan but I have seen webs on bald cypress and even on red trumpet vine.

For the story what they are, where they come from and what to do about them, see the article at the Arborilogical Services, Inc..

Eagle Mountain Lake Park Land to be Sold to Developers!!
Wed, 28 Jun 2006

Please do what you can to voice your opposition of the sale of Texas Parks & Wildlife Department park property on the shores of Eagle Mountain Lake to  the highest bidder ---DEVELOPERS. Don't let them take our public property (400 acres) away and sub-divide it up for residential lots or commercial development. Help preserve open space and wildlife habitat. Demand that this accessible greenspace be preserved. Open space (especially in the D/FW area) is disappearing under concrete and asphalt. How do you want your community to look in 25 years? Take action now.

Write editorials to local papers, contact Governor Rick Perry, write Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and the General Land Office.

Contact Tarrant Regional Water District and Tarrant County to voice your support of their offer to purchase the land and open it to the public.

Read more about this tragedy-in-the-making OR triumph-in-the-making. The end result can be determined by the voting public.


Dallas Museum of Natural History to Build on New Site

Natural Gas Drilling Planned for Tandy Hills Natural Area

In case you have not read the 8/18/04 edition of the Star Telegram, plans are underway to drill for natural gas in Tandy Hills Natural Area, aka Tandy Hills Park, in the Meadowbrook area.

If you oppose this, write a letter to the editor of the Star Telegram and/or Fort Worth Weekly telling them so. If you can spare a few moments to write a letter, the email address is: letters@star-telegram.com.  The linked letter by by Don Young is a sample of what you can tell them. Thanks for your attention to this important matter.

North Central Texas SmartScape News

Smart Gardening for North Central Texas. Regionally coordinated effort to promote the water conservation, pollution prevention, recycling, composting, waste reduction principles of SmartScape, a tool to help homeowners and gardening enthusiasts create beautiful landscapes that require less water, pesticides, and fertilizer to thrive. It is simply Smart Gardening for North Central Texas.
Dallas Nature Center re-opens as Cedar Ridge Preserve
by Kelly Cotten (Chairman, CRP Management Committee)
On Saturday May 10, 2003 the Dallas Nature Center formally re-opened under a new name -- Cedar Ridge Preserve -- and new management by Audubon Dallas. This 633-acre preserve, jointly owned by the City and County of Dallas, is an outstanding complement to the nearby Dogwood Canyon project. Eventually these two sanctuaries may function as one. In the meantime, our board has created a CRP Management Committee chaired by me and including Carol Frank (our Treasurer), Chuck Siegel (VP of Fundraising), Ann Bradshaw (a former board member of the old DNC), and Dr. Marcy Marsden (our VP of Conservation).

In turn, the management committee has created or is in the process of creating subcommittees to advise us on natural resources (inc. habitat and biodiversity), constructed resources (including buildings and trails), and programming (including classes and field trips). Please let us know if you'd like to participate on any of these subcommittees, or volunteer for any of the many workdays at the preserve. Perhaps the greatest need we have right now is for a volunteer Volunteer Coordinator!

Some things haven't changed at the preserve. Mingo Mendez, the former caretaker for almost 25 years has accepted a contract to continue those same duties. Those of you that have been hiking the trails for years will be no doubt be comforted to see his smiling face again. Annie Smirmaul and her garden club continue to help maintain the Native Plant Garden with loving care and a passion for native Texas and drought-adapted plants. And many of the dedicated Scout troops and other non-profit groups that helped build the nature center are once again offering their services to renovate the preserve.

Other things have changed greatly. The old ranch house cum visitor center, its attached garages, swimming pool and guest house have all been removed. In their places are fields that are being restored to escarpment prairie -- one of the rarest ecosystems in North Central Texas. The demolition was a long, complex and messy process -- and the restoration process will be even more so -- so please be patient. The end result will be spectacular, and a great educational resource.

As sad as it is to see those old buildings go, it's also good to know that what money might have been spent on trying to repair and maintain the buildings has now been diverted to the more important tasks of habitat and trail restoration -- or what we call, "putting the Nature back into the Dallas Nature Center." We are making a complete inventory of the natural resources of the preserve, and are dedicated to restoring many species that were once easily found on the preserve but are now absent, rare or endangered -- such as the Black-capped Vireo or the Rattlesnake Fern.

Overhauling the trail system is also a top priority. Many of the trails are now almost 25 years old and are starting to show their age. A trail inventory has been completed. As with all of our planning at the preserve, experts from Texas Parks and Wildlife, US Fish and Wildlife, Texas Master Naturalists and other agencies are helping us to evaluate the results. Long-term, serious erosion is a major problem, as is the decline of some trail structures such as steps, bridges and observation platforms. Chuck Siegel, our VP of Fundraising has submitted several grant applications for funds to renovate the trail system, and over the next several months we will begin the difficult work of renovating the old trail system. Our ultimate goal is to provide safe, efficient, state-of-the-art trails that bring people into close contact with the rich natural heritage of the preserve.

Those are some of the highlights of the 26-page CRP management plan adopted by the board earlier this year. During the next 12 months, as I serve my terms as Immediate Past President and Chair of the CRP Management Committee, I will do my utmost to make this preserve the very best that it can be. In the next few weeks, the CRP committee will be working with our VP of Communications, Connie Sandlin, to create a dedicated phone line and webpage for the preserve, so that we can provide to you the very latest news about all the great things happening at Audubon Dallas' newest sanctuary -- Cedar Ridge Preserve. I look forward to seeing you all out there this summer!

Urban Forestry Focus

Every tree is precious! A new committee answerable to the public and policy makers in Dallas regarding all issues pertaining to urban forestry, our region trees and the ecosystems they support. See the Dallas Urban Forestry Advisory Committee web site.

Web Worms

Fall Web Worms

In the meanwhile, squish all you see outside of their web. You can also cut open the webs to allow wasps and birds to eat their fill.


Gas Drilling In Tandy Hills?

Do You Want

Gas Drilling In Our

Beautiful Tandy Hills?

Please join us for our first meeting this Thursday, August 4, at 6PM. The address is 3512 View Street, across the street from the park. The meeting will be very informal and will last no more than 1 hour.
Contact: Don Young 817-731-2787

Prairie Coalition Action Network (2/2003)

The Prairie Coalition Action Network is a loosely organized national coalition in support of prairie preservation and stewardship. They keep a list of volunteer contacts and e-mail them "alerts" about legislation and government activities relating to prairie conservation. The founding members are prairie activists from Iowa, Texas and Missouri.

Coalition members are provided brief descriptions of the issue of concern and asked to e-mail or fax the pertinent agency or their Congresspersons with their comments. If you would like to be on the list, please email Lee Stone at leeprairie@austin.rr.com or Cindy Hildebrand at Grantridge@aol.com.

An email list serve is available for serious and pertinent discussions regarding the issues involving prairies, prairie legislation, biota, habitat issues, etc. To subscribe, send email to majordomo@hort.net with the body of your message containing the command "subscribe prairie" without the quotes.

NEW WILDFLOWER DISCOVERED IN North Central Texas by Debra Dennis, Fort Worth bureau of the Dallas Morning News

The Lone Star State, already boasting of more that 5,000 native flowering plants, can claim one more wildflower. Texas Master Naturalist volunteer Jeff Quayle of Fort Worth discovered the new plant while hiking Lake Mineral Wells State Park in April. The new species was announced in the Dec. 19 issue of the botanical journal Sida, a publication of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas. "There are people I know who are experienced naturalists or botanists and they've never had anything named for them, so it's quite an honor," said Mr. Quayle, 36. The plant, a member of the sunflower family, informally will be called Quayle´s ragwort.

Known by its scientific name, Senecio quaylei, the plant is a short-lived annual of the sunflower family and grows to be about waist-high said Tom Harvey, a spokesman for Texas Parks and Wildlife. The wildflower produces yellow flowers in spring, he said. Mr. Quayle recognized the flower from genus Senecio but knew nothing else about it, Mr. Harvey said. Dr. Barkley, a professor emeritus of botany at Kansas State University, sent samples to the Smithsonian Institute and the Royal Botanic Gardens in England, but no matches were found. Dr. Barkley said any plant discovery is important, because it could assist genetic research into high-tech plant breeding, help develop new pharmaceuticals, or yield horticultural uses. Mr. Quayle, a self-taught botanist, is one of 850 volunteers in the Texas Master Naturalist program who work to help the public develop an understanding of conservation. The volunteer program, cosponsored by Texas Parks and Wildlife and the Agricultural Extension Service, was started in 1997 and has 12 chapters throughout the state.

Oak Wilt in Texas
The Oak Wilt Information Partnership is a collaborative project between the Texas Forest Service, the Forest Health Protection branch of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service, the Central Southwest/Gulf Coast Information Node of NBII housed at the Houston Advanced Research Center, the Texas Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture, and the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. Read what the Oak Wilt Specialists have to say about this tragic disease.

Grant Funds Campión Trails Development Extension
Sept 22, 2010 - Through a partnership with Dallas County, the city has successfully secured more than $3 million in grant funding to further develop Campión Trails. These open space grant funds are being used to construct five additional trail miles and city leaders expect to procure even more grant funding for the trails in the future.

As a core component of a greenbelt system that involves 16 counties in North Texas, Irving’s Campión Trails offers walkers, runners, cyclists and equestrian riders more than seven miles of 12-foot-wide concrete trail for enjoyment and exploration. See the Dalhoma Trail System map of which Campión Trails is a part.

National Recreational Trail Grant Funding August 21, 2008
Action item to award federal funds allocated under the National Recreational Trail Grants for trail construction, renovation and acquisition projects. This item obligates federal National Recreational Trail Funds to eligible trail projects based upon the recommendations of the Texas Statewide Trails Advisory Board.

Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge Opens New Web Site
The staff of the Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge is pleased to announce that we now have a live website or our own. Please visit the site at www.fwnaturecenter.org or www.fwnc.org. Although the site is a work in progress, we are sure that web visitors will find the site information packed. Since each of you has a professional or personal website that you manage, we would like to request that you link to our site. We will soon be adding a links page and would be happy to return the favor. I am attaching a small jpeg of our logo if you would like to use it in the link. Thanks in advance and please don't hesitate to spread the word about our new site.

News Series

Insider Newsletter
Department of Environmental Resources, North Central Texas Council of Governments through DFWinfo.com.

TPWD Nature News
Nature and Wildlife Conservation Headlines in Texas sponsored by Texas Parks and Wildlife.

TPWD Calendar - Featured Events
Check out nature events in our fair state and close to home.

TAMU Ag news regarding Texas nature, from the Public Affairs group, Agricultural Communications, TAMU.

TNRCC (Now the TCEQ) News Release Headlines
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality headlines and news around Texas. View Webcasts of TCEQ Commissioners and Stakeholders meetings.

Texas Nature Tourism e-Newsletter
Subscribe to the TNTC eNewsletter or read it on-line




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Nature Events

Jim's This and That Events
Master Naturalist Jim Varnum's personal regional calendar of events. Don't miss out on this stuff or you've really missed it.!

North Texas Master Naturalist's Calendar

Fort Worth Nature Center Events
Nature and Wildlife events at the Fort Worth Nature Center, fun for the whole family. In my opinion, the FWNC is the finest nature facility in the North Central Texas region.

Noble Planetarium Now Showing
Current astronomical events in the Texas skyline from the Noble Planetarium, Fort Worth.

Events - Dallas Zoo
Wildlife events at the Dallas Zoo the whole family can enjoy.

TravelTex: Prairies and Lakes Event Calendar
Calendar of events in North Central and Central Texas.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Outdoor News
A new feature of Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine.

North-North Central Texas Backroads & Highways
Scenic routes and interesting natural places in North & North Central Texas. GREAT SITE!!! Don't miss it!!

White Rock Lake Events - "For the Love of the Lake"
For the Love of the Lake directory of events.

Texas Discovery Gardens Events Calendar
A year-round urban oasis, Texas Discovery Gardens is located at historic Fair Park in Dallas.


Mapquest Address Locator
Find your way to an event in North Central Texas with this interactive map/address locator.

Wild Bird Festivals in Texas
A listing of festival throughout the Lone Start State with a wild bird theme.

Texas Music Events & Festivals
Locate the latest fun filled festivals listings at TexasOutside.com.

Lone Star Texas Event Calendar
Lone Star Internet's Texas trails calendar of events. Check this one out first for fun outings! More from TexasOutside.com.

Heard Museum & Nature Center Events

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