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“3rd SATURDAY WORKDAYS”ENJOY THE OUTDOORS! Celebrate our 1st Monthly Prairie Restoration Workday, Kirchoff Prairie Restoration Site (*)Sponsored by The San Antonio Chapter of NPAT.

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WORK MORNING at White Rock LakeSponsored by North Texas Master NaturalistsSaturday, beginning at 9:30 amMeetup at “Boy Scout Hill” at the…

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Wednesday from 8am-4pm Info on CEU hours, the day’s Agenda and RSVP via this link!

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Prairie Facts

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Tuesday, Jul 17, 2012

The Native Prairies Association of Texas, in partnership with Texas AgriLife Extension Service, North Central Texas College, Connemara Conservancy, the Oaks and Prairies Joint Venture, and Texas Parks and Wildlife, held a presentation and field trip that provided local landowners and other interested parties with information about land trusts and conservation easements, grassland management with and without livestock, and sustainable livestock management.  Check out some photos from the presentation:

Wayne Becker, AgriLife Extension Service Agent for Cooke County, starts the morning with a brief introduction and a summary of the day’s activities.

Jon Hayes, OPJV, giving his presentation about habitat management for quail and other grassland birds to a full house.

Dr. Lisa Bellows, talking about land management practices used at the Thomsen Nature Preserve to maintain healthy grassland areas and prevent the encroachment of woody plant species.

Open landscape at the Thomsen Nature Preserve.

Dr. Lisa Bellows describing the solar-powered pump used for keeping the wildlife water trough topped off.

Dr. Lisa Bellows describing the construction and the uses of a garden showcasing local native plants as an outdoor teaching area.

Garden at the Thomsen Nature Preserve.

Dr. Lisa Bellows describing the process taken to increase the population of a specific plant through intensive control of competing and invasive species.  Competition forb control was used to increase the number of Rattlesnake Master occurances in this corner of the preserve from a mere handful to thousands.

Rattlesnake Master

Jerry Baggs, ranch foreman for Pittman Ranch, explains how multiple paddocks are used to rotate cattle from one area to another while sharing a water source.

Cattle heading out into a new paddock on the Pittman Ranch.

The herd dogs finally got a chance to cool off once the cattle left the water trough area.

Dalmara Bayne, Executive Director of NPAT, giving an introductory presentation about conservation easements during lunch at the Leo Ranch.

Wayne Becker, AgriLife Extension Service Agent for Cooke County, gave a lunch presentation about sustainable ranch management practices such as paddock size and configuration and the effects on livestock growth and forage management.

Commons Ford Prairie Restoration Update

Tuesday, Jul 10, 2012

    Check out this update from Ed Fair of the Commons Ford Prairie Restoration Organization about the prairie restoration project underway at Commons Ford Ranch Metropolitan Park in Austin, TX:


    “A prairie of approximately 40 acres encompasses the central portion (the area surrounded by the main trail) of Commons Ford Park. At present, the prairie is comprised primarily of King Ranch Bluestem, Bermuda Grass and Johnson Grass (all invasive species) with scattered, small mesquite trees. The prairie also has two very small oak groves of 2-4 trees each.”

    “Commons Ford PRO and the Austin Parks and Recreations Department are developing a native prairie restoration plan which will remove all of the invasives and convert the land into a prairie comprised of native grasses and wildflowers. Travis Audubon Society, along with Balcones Canyonlands Preserve, Native Prairies Association of Texas, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Natural Resources Conservation Service/USDA and Austin Parks Foundation have all committed to collaborate in various aspects of the preparation and implementation of the restoration plan.”

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