Author Archives: Dr. Maureen Frank

The Next Generation

The information provided at TexNat may be useful to landowners and land managers right now, but what about the landowners and land managers of the future? Texas Brigades is a conservation leadership camp for youth ages 13-17 who are interested in Texas wildlife and wild places. Each camp features one of several different topics – deer, quail, ranching, bass, and coastal fisheries – held in various locations across the state. Space is limited and applications are open now, so please share with youth you know who might be… Read More →

Where to Report Wildlife Sightings

Texas’ landowners, land managers, and outdoor enthusiasts always have their eyes and ears on Texas wildlife. But even if the time you spend in nature is just walking your kids to school, you will probably be lucky enough to see wildlife at some point in your day. Depending on where you live – urban or rural, Panhandle or Valley, Trans-Pecos or Piney Woods – common species that you typically see might include fox squirrels, mourning doves, or green anoles. Every so often though, you might see something… different!… Read More →

Wildlife Fact Check

This summer, there is a wildlife program series being offered online to anyone across Texas who is interested! The Wildlife Fact Check began last summer in south-central Texas, but is being expanded via live broadcasts to counties across the state. If you are interested, please contact your County Extension Agent, who can set up a broadcast for your county. This year’s theme is managing for wildlife along with livestock. Check out the schedule below: June 29 – Exotic Ecology July 20 – Predators & Deer August 10 –… Read More →

Hunting regulation changes for 2018-2019 season

Attention hunters! The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission has approved several regulation changes for the 2018-2019 hunting season. These include: South Zone general dove season opens Sept. 14. Shorter spring Eastern wild turkey season in 13 counties. Closing date will remain the same but opening date will be one week later. Eastern turkey season is now closed in San Augustine and Upshur counties. New 9-day buck-only mule deer season in Lynn County. Antler spread restriction (20-inch minimum) implemented for mule deer in 6 counties. Clarification of a previous… Read More →

Invasive species… and more invasive species

A recent study revealed that globally, about one-fourth of all invasive species are “new” invaders, meaning that they have not previously been invasive in other areas. In other words, although we can predict that certain species will become invasive in new environments, there are other species that may invade even though they haven’t caused problems elsewhere. An example of an animal that we know is invasive is the wild pig (Sus scrofa). Just about anywhere wild pigs are introduced, they become a major invasive problem. On the other… Read More →

New publication: Texas Water Law

If you’ve never visited the Texas Agriculture Law Blog, now is a great time to check it out! In a recent post, Extension Agricultural Law Specialist Tiffany Dowell Lashmet released a new publication called “Basics of Texas Water Law.” Given this year’s water theme on TexNat, this is a timely publication! Both groundwater and surface water are addressed in this concise, easy-to-read paper. These concepts are applicable not just for agriculture producers, but also for those who use ground and surface water for wildlife.

How much water?

Edited by Dr. Bob Dittmar, Wildlife Veterinarian, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department The water needs of different wildlife species vary widely. Even within a species, an animal’s water needs may differ depending on climate, body size of the animal, reproductive status, and other factors. This is why the daily water intake of a particular species is usually given as a range of values. Below are some of the factors that can influence the specific water needs of a given animal. Physiology Different animals are adapted to different climates… Read More →

Texas Chapter of The Wildlife Society – 2018 Conference

This year’s meeting of the Texas Chapter of The Wildlife Society (TCTWS) will be held at the Sheraton Dallas and will focus on the topic “The relevance of conservation to a diverse society: how to make it a reality.” The excellent list of plenary speakers includes Dr. Steve Williams, President of the Wildlife Management Institute; Ms. Becky Humphries, CEO of the National Wild Turkey Federation; Dr. John McDonald, President of The Wildlife Society, and Ms. Tina Yturria Buford, Director of Education for East Foundation. The annual TCTWS conference… Read More →

Quail on ice

Earlier this week, a post on the Rolling Plains Quail Research Ranch Facebook page featured a covey of bobwhites huddled up against the cold weather. This leads us to an excellent NatNotes topic: what do wildlife do when it’s cold? Across the rangelands of Texas, some critters are more familiar with cold than others. Most of the bobwhites in south Texas probably haven’t seen this much cold weather in a couple generations, while quail on the High Plains of the Panhandle experience freezing temperatures more regularly. So for… Read More →

All About Water

We’ve experienced some highs and lows and crazy weather in Texas the past few months. But, unfortunately for our rangelands, what we’ve been missing is rain! On Texas rangelands, drought is not an “if” but a “when” and “how long will it last.” So, while we always hope for rain in the forecast, it’s good to prepare for the driest scenario. This year, water will be a regular feature of TexNat posts. We’ll discuss how wildlife use water, how rain affects plant health and diversity, and how all… Read More →