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texas's Wildlife

Texas is the most beautiful state or province in North America! It covers greater than 250,000 square miles of prairie, forests, canyon lands, rivers, streams and ocean. It is not only ecologically diverse it is culturally radiant due in no small part to its shared border with Mexico. Texas is home to a vast array of wildlife with opportunities to view and commune with nature around every bend.

Texas is at a critical point in its history in terms of nature. Today, life is slightly different than when settelers first arrived. While some species are still abundant some of our most treasured wildlife species are at crossroads. Through the efforts of wildlife biologists and caring citizens, many of these species will remain a constant source of pleasure for generations to come. However, without some help and care, these species could end up going the way of the passenger pigeon.

A sure example of this is the Atwater’s prairie chickens on the coastal plains. With less than 70 individuals, a catastrophic event could place them into the history books in the category of what once was. If it was not for the help of Texas Parks and Wildlife biologists, caring Texans, private landowners, and partners like the Houston Zoo, this species might already be gone.

The state’s Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Plan provides an exhaustive description of texas’s biodiversity as well as conservation challenges and opportunities.

State Bird
texas's Wildlife
Mockingbird
State Large Mammal
texas's Wildlife
Long Horn
State Small Mammal
texas's Wildlife
Armadillo
State Fish


texas's Wildlife


Guadalupe Bass
Learn more about Wildlife Conservation Learn more about Wildlife Conservation


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As fire seasons have tended to become longer and fire behavior more severe, questions inevitably arise among the public and media. “Is this the worst fire season ever?” “How does this year compare with otherbad fire seasons?”

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East Gulf Coastal Plain Joint Venture (EGCPJV) prescribed fire communications strategy.  Developed with input from more than 45 prescribed fire/resource management experts throughout the East Gulf Coastal Plain, as well as guidance from the EGCPJV staff and board, the Strategy focuses on achieving three overarching policy, outreach and education goals that address current impediments to the use of prescribed fire.  A total of 30 prescribed fire messages designed to achieve those goals provide background and detailed supporting information to serve as a flexible foundation for future communications and initiatives.

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Policy Resolution 13-04: Western Governors direct the Western Governors’ Wildlife Council to continue its guidance in the development, management and implementation with partners of the state and West-wide CHATs. Western Governors also urge federal agencies to use state fish and wildlife data and analyses as principal sources to inform their land use, land planning and related natural resource decisions, rather than spending scarce resources duplicating existing state data collection efforts.

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This 2nd edition of the NBCI’s annual “State of the Bobwhite” report provides the most comprehensive assessment ever compiled on the current state of bobwhite conservation in the US.

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This first annual “State of the Bobwhite” report by the National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative (NBCI) and the National Bobwhite Technical Committee (NBTC) provides a snapshot of the population, hunting, and conservation status of the northern bobwhite, Colinus virginianus. This report provides an assessment of range-wide bobwhite population and hunting  activity trends as well as state-by-state population, hunting, and management status summaries. Also featured are key perceptions of state quail coordinators on the trends and current status of quail conservation efforts in their state.  These data were compiled in 2011 for the NBCI State Agency Inventory Project.

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Conservation buffers such as filter strips, riparian buffers, grassed waterways, and field borders are especially applicable to southeastern landscapes and have multiple environmental benefits while serving to significantly improve wildlife habitats.

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Summary Findings

  • The Habitat Buffers for Upland Birds practice (CP33) is the first Federal conservation practice to target species-specific population recovery goals of a national wildlife conservation initiative (the Northern Bobwhite Conservation Initiative).
  • Over 14 states, breeding bobwhite densities were 70 to 75 percent greater around CP33 buffered fields than around unbuffered crop fields.
  • Fall bobwhite covey densities were 50 to 110 percent greater around CP33 fields than around unbuffered crop fields, and this positive response to CP33 increased each subsequent year of the study.
  • Several upland songbirds (e.g., dickcissel, field sparrow) responded strongly to CP33 in the landscape.
  • Area-sensitive grassland birds (e.g.,grasshopper sparrow) exhibited little response to CP33 buffers.
  • These findings illustrate the wildlife value of field borders and other buffer practices implemented through EQIP, WHIP, and other conservation programs.
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The conservation provisions of the Farm Bill can produce more consistent positive wildlife habitat benefits when policy (program statutes, rules, practices, and practice standards) is developed in the context of explicit goals identified as part of large-scale conservation initiatives.

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The conservation objective in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley is to provide forested habitat capable of supporting sustainable populations of all forest dependent wildlife species. This report provides recommendations to improve and enhance management activities directed at providing habitat for priority wildlife species.

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For a landscape supporting healthy native bird populations across the LMVJV

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The National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative (NBCI) is the unified range-wide strategy of 25 state wildlife agencies, with numerous conservation group and research institution partners, to achieve widespread restoration of native grassland habitats and huntable populations of wild quail.

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This publication provides technical guidance and practical information for wildlife management beyond planting and managing food plots. 

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Wildlife tourism contributes substantially to the Gulf Coast economy.  Wildlife tourism is defined as (1) guide and outfitter businesses directly serving wildlife watchers, recreational fishers and hunters, and (2) lodging and dining establishments where these clients sleep and eat. Read More »


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Summarizes biology of wild pigs, history of introduction and range of occurence within the U.S., and ecological and economic impacts, with suggestions for management strategies. Read More »


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Report summarizes current status of coastal wetlands and six wildlife species in the Gulf two years after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Read More »


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Fire has shaped Louisiana’s landscape for thousands of years. Native Americans set fires to reduce “rough” vegetation, improve hunting areas and create space for crops. Many fires were started by lightning strikes during spring and fall dry seasons. Even during periods of summer rain, lightning ignited fires in grass, dry leaves and at the base of trees. Across much of Louisiana, these fires maintained coastal prairie, longleaf pine and shortleaf pine/oak/hickory ecosystems. Wildlife was nourished by the diversity of plants that flourished in areas that were frequently burned. The short intervals between fires prevented large accumulations of fuel. This reduced the occurrence of intense fires that could damage or kill large expanses of trees.

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In February 2013, the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council requested the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) promulgate an emergency rule for the 2013 recreational red snapper season. This emergency rule was implemented on March 25, 2013, and allowed for implementation of state-specific closure authority of the federal exclusive economic zone off states not adopting consistent federal recreational red snapper regulations.
 

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The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers a suite of Farm Bill conservation programs and practices that provide incentives to enhance environmental quality on privately-owned agricultural lands. In 2004, the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) initiated conservation practice Habitat Buffers for Upland Birds (CP33) under  the continuous sign-up Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) to target recovery of northern bobwhite (Colinus virgianianus) and other upland bird species in row-crop  agricultural landscapes. This was the first CRP practice designed specifically to help meet recovery objectives of a large-scale wildlife conservation initiative and the first to  require a wildlife monitoring component as part of its practice directive. The FSA initially allocated 250,000 CP33 acres to 35 states (increased to 350,000 acres in 2010) to be actively managed over a period of 10 years and charged the Southeast Quail Study Group (SEQSG, now National Bobwhite Technical Committee) with development of a coordinated CP33 monitoring protocol to generate measures of population response for northern bobwhite (Colinus virginianus) and other priority bird species at multiple spatial scales.

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A Bird Trail is more than a trail in the literal sense.  It is a “necklace” of sites, usually linked by a physiographic feature such as a river, that are united by the theme of “great for bird watching!”  Birding Trails are essentially driving routes that help you get from one prime birding spot to the next.

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The term “early successional habitat” describes the shrubs, trees, and other plants that grow back on the land after older vegetation has been removed or cut back. We can visualize this important habitat type as all the stages of plant growth from open grasslands to young forest. Historically, these habitats were created by natural disturbances, extreme physical conditions such as poor soils or harsh climates, the abandonment of agricultural land, and logging. In recent years, human development has greatly reduced the amount of land available to wildlife, and many of the disturbances that once gave rise to early successional habitat – fire, extensive areas of flooding caused by beavers, and heavy logging – have been suppressed (Trani et al. 2001). As a result, populations of wildlife that need early successional habitat have fallen drastically (Litvaitis, 1993; Thompson & Dessecker, 1997).

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South Texas, the "Last Great Habitat"
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Concerns about conservation of the tropical rainforests and other well-known regions of the world are widely publicized, yet a region of inestimable biological wealth lies relatively unrecognized on the back doorstep of North America. The region lying south of a line from Port O’Connor to Victoria, northwest to San Antonio and west to Del Rio known as “South Texas” is one of the most biologically diverse regions in the world (Fig. ). In fact, it is termed “hyper-diverse” by many ecologists. We feel that conservation of this biological treasure is of urgent concern to policy makers, nature enthusiasts, and the general public throughout the region and nation.

Because virtually all land in South Texas is privately owned, incentives are needed that enable landowners to retain ownership and keep the habitat in an unfragmented condition. These incentives might include conservation easements and tax breaks for wildlife conservation or business ventures focused on outdoor recreation.





Methylmercury is a form of mercury that is found in most freshwater and saltwater fish. In some lakes, rivers, and coastal waters in California, methylmercury has been found in some types of fish at concentrations that may be harmful to human health. The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) has issued health advisories to fishers and their families giving recommendations on how much of the affected fish in these areas can be safely eaten. In these advisories, women of childbearing age and children are encouraged to be especially careful about following the advice because of the greater sensitivity of fetuses and children to methylmercury. 

Fish are nutritious and should be a part of a healthy, balanced diet. As with many other kinds of food, however, it is prudent to consume fish in moderation. OEHHA provides advice to the public so that people can continue to eat fish without putting their health at risk.
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This report describes the key findings of an analysis of the status and recent changes in ownership size, land  use and property values of private farms, ranches and forestlands in Texas. The goal of this work is to provide  public and private decision makers with the data they need to plan for the conservation of working rural lands  in Texas. Included in this report are four summaries describing results of technical analyses upon which many  of our conclusions are based. Our primary data sources were the Texas State Comptroller of Public Accounts  (who provided a 1992-2001 annual compilation of land use and land value data from 1,032 independent school  districts), and the U.S.D.A. Agricultural Statistics Service. We also obtained data from the U. S. Census Bureau,  U.S.D.A. Natural Resources Inventory, and the U. S. Department of Commerce/Bureau of Economic Analysis–Regional Economic Information System. We used Geographic Information Systems (GIS) base maps obtained from the Texas Natural Resources Information System (TNRIS). This work was made possible by grants to American Farmland Trust from the Meadows Foundation and Houston Endowment, Inc.

Our specific objectives were to:

  • Assess the current status and recent trends in rural land ownership size, land use and property values in Texas;
  • Determine relationships among land size, land use and property values;
  • Develop a map-based simulation model for projecting future trends in rural lands, and use this model to explore  the implications of initiating a Purchase of Development Rights program;
  • Encourage the development of policies for conserving productive rural lands and wildlife habitats in Texas; and
  • Provide public access to these data using a Web site with interactive mapping and custom data queries.
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ABSTRACT—Assessing numerical response of northern bobwhites (Colinus virginianus) to habitat improvement in semi-arid rangeland often is confounded by responses of populations to highly variable patterns of rainfall. During 2 years of above-average rainfall, we investigated abundance of northern bobwhites relative to type of range and treatments to reduce brush on seven ranches in southern Texas. We expected response of populations to treatment of land to be more evident when northern bobwhites were released from constraints of low precipitation. However, main factors dominating abundance were rainfall during the previous growing season and type of range. Greatest numbers of calls were in mid-productivity rangeland (potential production of forage 2,000–3,900 kg/ha), especially sandy loam, clay loam, sandy, and gravelly ridge. Treatments to reduce brush increased abundance of northern bobwhites to a limited extent and were most effective when large blocks of land were treated. Techniques that kill brush (root-plowing) were more successful in increasing populations than top-removal methods (roller-chopping). Leaving strips or mottes (large clumps of living brush and trees) in cleared areas did not enhance populations, although we caution that retaining some brush cover may be important to survival of northern bobwhites in drier years and in situations where herbaceous cover  is less abundant.

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This comprehensive wildlife management planning guidelines provide detailed information on wildlife property tax deductions, habitat control, erosion control. predator control, how to provide supplemental water, food and shelter, as well as a census for the Edwards Plateau and Cross Timbers & Prairies Ecological Regions.

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Excerpts from the Texas Wildlife Action Plan (WAP) applicable to private landowners.

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A range-wide sampling framework and survey method is being developed to estimate total abundance of active leks for the population of LPC. In addition, standard operating procedures are being developed for aerial surveys and ground truthing surveys. The methods are being developed with the assistance of core members of the Lesser Prairie-Chicken Interstate Working Group (LPCIWG). It is anticipated that the plan will be implemented in a pilot study in the  spring of 2012. This study plan and results of the pilot study will provide managers within the Great Plains Landscape Conservation Cooperative (GPLCC) a more consistent approach for trend analyses of abundance of LEPC leks across the species’ range.

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Lesser prairie-chickens and greater sage-grouse depend on large prairie and steppe landscapes shared by agricultural producers, primarily ranching operations. Historically, their ranges were vast, but today wild prairies have dwindled by 90 percent, and sagebrush steppe by 50 percent. Stressors on these landscapes continue and include energy development, subdivision, invasive species, and drought. As a result of this reduction in available habitat, the two species have been added to the list of Candidate Species for Endangered Species Act protection.

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This document describes the different habitat requiremenst of the LPC. It includes descriptions of nesting habitat, brood-rearing habitat, fall/winter habitat, LEPC diet, and predators/diseases.

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This document provides a brief description of the different habitat types or land uses that occur in the Southern Great Plains and their relative importance to the LPC. Included are rangelands, riparian, croplands, and Conservation Reserve Program land uses.

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The goal of the protocol is to consistently monitor trend in vegetation structure on individual properties voluntarily applying management under initiative contract. Closely follow the directions to allow the data to be combined across the ecological regions and assess trend in vegetation at a landscape scale. Monitoring and vegetation protocols below address the Conference Report’s guidance on assessment and monitoring protocols that the SWAT and FO will perform on individual properties.
 

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Populations of Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus; LEPC) have declined by more than 90%. The main factors precipitating this decline have been the conversion of sand-sage and mixed-grass prairie to agriculture, juniper encroachment,  excessive cattle grazing, and fossil-fuel and suburban development. Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) fields contribute greatly to the remaining habitat of the LEPC; however, approximately three million acres of CRP within the current LEPC distribution will soon expire, and potentially be re-converted to cropland.

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The mission of Western Grassland Initiative is to serve as the primary contributor to the implementation of conservation and management actions, through partnerships and cooperative efforts, resulting in improved species status, grassland habitats, and recreational opportunities for grassland dependent species across North America.

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The overall distribution of the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) has declined an estimated 92 percent since settlement by people of European descent and an estimated 78 percent since the early 1960s. Concurrent with this decrease in occupied range, numbers of lesser prairie-chickens have declined at least 90 percent since European settlement, resulting in smaller, more isolated populations. As a consequence of these declines, the lesser prairie-chicken is a candidate for federal listing as a threatened or endangered species.

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Proposed rule; revision and reopening of comment period.

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Lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) ECOS profile.

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Through Working Lands for Wildlife —a voluntary, incentive-based effort—the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and its conservation partners will provide landowners with technical and financial assistance to: Restore populations of declining wildlife species. provide farmers, ranchers, and forest managers with regulatory certainty that conservation investments they make today help sustain their operations over the long term, and strengthen and sustain rural economies by restoring and protecting the productive capacity of working lands. Read more about the different focal species here.

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According to the Mississippi Prescribed Fire Council, periodic fire played an important ecological role in shaping southern forests and grasslands. Longleaf pine is the premier example of a native Mississippi ecosystem adapted to fire.  It is also a relict landscape, having been largely replaced with loblolly pine.  At one time, longleaf pine forests covered 90 million acres across the Southeast, but now only scattered remnants totaling 3 million acres remain.  Most are privately owned.  

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This document is a comprehensive range-wide conservation plan (RWP) for the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus; hereafter LPC). The goal of the RWP is to conserve the LPC for future generations while facilitating continued and uninterrupted economic activity throughout the entire five-state LPC range. The RWP identifies a two-pronged strategy for LPC conservation: (1) the coordinated implementation of incentive-based land owner programs, and (2) the implementation of a mitigation framework which reduces threats and provides resources for off-site conservation.

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A review of bird census techniques opens with the statement that ‘birds are counted for a wide variety of reasons by a bewildering range of methods’. In the southeastern United States, a number of different survey techniques and protocols are used. Some form the foundation of regional, national and international avian monitoring programs, while others have the potential to do so. In order to promote awareness of what programs and protocols are available, this guide summarizes popular, multi-species bird monitoring programs and protocols that are currently used, or could be used, within the Southeast Partners in Flight region.

The guide is meant as a starting point for individuals seeking out information to assess the pros and cons of various protocols in addressing their project objectives. In those cases where the protocols are inextricably linked to a broader monitoring program, the program itself (e.g., North American Breeding Bird Survey) and/or the sampling scheme (e.g., Strategic Multi-scale Grassland Bird Population Monitoring) is summarized along with the protocol. Our focus was primarily on those protocols designed to measure abundance and demographic parameters.

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texas's Wildlife Texas Conservation Action Plan (TCAP)
Also known as the Texas Wildlife Action plan (TWAP) or Texas Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy (TXCWCS)

The Texas Conservation Action Plan's purpose is to provide a statewide "roadmap" for research, restoration, management and recovery projects addressing Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) and important habitats. "SGCN" include terrestrial, freshwater, and marine birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates (like insects and freshwater mussels), fishes, plants and plant communities. The goal of the Plan is ultimately to conserve and improve the status of these species and, as possible, prevent listings under the Endangered Species Act. The Conservation Action Plan has elements for anyone interested in conservation in Texas, not just Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD).

Outline of the Texas Conservation Action Plan

Wildlife and Habitat Management in texas
Whether you grow tomatoes, irrigate rice, sell sod, raise cattle, tend orchards, own forest, cut timber, run a hunt club or feed wildlife, in some way you manage habitat. “Best management practices” (BMPs) are available to assist landowners with planning, implementing and managing their land.

Developed by experienced practitioners, and management and research organizations, these management tools are based on the best available science. BMPs will often save landowners money in the long term even as they improve conditions for wildlife in the short term.


Best Management Practice Downloads
The following are a selection of BMPs culled from various national, regional, state and local sources. Each is available for download as a pdf.
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Texas has over 191,000 miles of waterways with riparian areas – the green vegetation zones along creeks, rivers and lakes – that provide great economic, social, cultural and environmental value to the state.  Proper management of these areas can reverse years of neglect and result in improved water quality and stable reservoir capacity.  Recommendations given herein are focused on central and eastern Texas and include restoration techniques, plant species selection, monitoring methods, and grazing and cropland management. 

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East Gulf Coastal Plain Joint Venture (EGCPJV) prescribed fire communications strategy.  Developed with input from more than 45 prescribed fire/resource management experts throughout the East Gulf Coastal Plain, as well as guidance from the EGCPJV staff and board, the Strategy focuses on achieving three overarching policy, outreach and education goals that address current impediments to the use of prescribed fire.  A total of 30 prescribed fire messages designed to achieve those goals provide background and detailed supporting information to serve as a flexible foundation for future communications and initiatives.

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Conservation buffers such as filter strips, riparian buffers, grassed waterways, and field borders are especially applicable to southeastern landscapes and have multiple environmental benefits while serving to significantly improve wildlife habitats.

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Summary Findings

  • The Habitat Buffers for Upland Birds practice (CP33) is the first Federal conservation practice to target species-specific population recovery goals of a national wildlife conservation initiative (the Northern Bobwhite Conservation Initiative).
  • Over 14 states, breeding bobwhite densities were 70 to 75 percent greater around CP33 buffered fields than around unbuffered crop fields.
  • Fall bobwhite covey densities were 50 to 110 percent greater around CP33 fields than around unbuffered crop fields, and this positive response to CP33 increased each subsequent year of the study.
  • Several upland songbirds (e.g., dickcissel, field sparrow) responded strongly to CP33 in the landscape.
  • Area-sensitive grassland birds (e.g.,grasshopper sparrow) exhibited little response to CP33 buffers.
  • These findings illustrate the wildlife value of field borders and other buffer practices implemented through EQIP, WHIP, and other conservation programs.
Read More »


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The conservation provisions of the Farm Bill can produce more consistent positive wildlife habitat benefits when policy (program statutes, rules, practices, and practice standards) is developed in the context of explicit goals identified as part of large-scale conservation initiatives.

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Review of the available literature on the ecological and economic impact of ecosystem services provided by  bats. Read More »


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Summarizes biology of wild pigs, history of introduction and range of occurence within the U.S., and ecological and economic impacts, with suggestions for management strategies. Read More »


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Northern Bobwhites (Colinus virginianus) were once common, even abundant, on farms, rangelands and forests across more than 30 states. Bobwhites have declined an average of 3% per year since 1966, and have virtually disappeared from some northern states. The last strongholds are portions of the western states with significant native habitats and quail-friendly land-use patterns, or other locales where bobwhite management is a priority on agricultural or plantation lands. Over most of the species’ range, the decline of wild bobwhite populations has relegated quail hunting to memories. The next few decades may be our last opportunity to halt the declines, stem widespread localized extinctions of bobwhites, and restore populations enough to create new memories for many.

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This brief University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture publication includes tips for developing a management plan and actual practices for habitat management.  It includes sections on special habitat types, tips on native species, food plots, pesticide use, snags, brush piles, supplemental feeding, water and nest boxes of many kinds. Read More »


From The Heinz Center, this 2008 lengthy publication is targeted to land managers who practice adaptive management.

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A Prescribed Fire Association is a group of landowners and other concerned citizens that form a partnership to conduct prescribed burns. Prescribed burning is the key land management tool used to restore and maintain native plant communities to their former diversity and productivity for livestock production and wildlife habitat. Native prairies, shrublands, and forests supply the majority of livestock forage and much of the wildlife habitat in the U.S. Without fire, many native plant communities become dysfunctional and unproductive. Research has clearly shown that there is no substitute for fire. 

Many forest and grassland ecosystems are fire dependent and not burning is poor land management.  Why do not more people use prescribed fire to manage their land? First, fire was not part of the European culture that settled in post-Columbian America. Fire exclusion and fire suppression has been engrained in our society for years and popularized by the very successful Smokey the Bear ad campaign. The result has been a rapid decline in the quality of our natural resources, along with costing taxpayers millions of dollars each year to fight wildfires and the many other negative consequences of fuel build up. This article has been adapted from Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Association. Read More »


A summary of all the benefits of prescribed fire in southern forests.

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This 40-page document provides detailed information on the biology of wild pigs, how to recognize their presence, the type of damage they can cause to agriculture and natural areas and a wide range of management techniques, including hunting.  It applies to just about anywhere in the U.S. where wild pigs are found.

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Lists toxicities of many different chemicals and how to reduce the risk of pesticide drift. A list of all Southern Regional Aquaculture Center factsheets (more than 150) are available at https://srac.tamu.edu/index.cfm/event/viewAllSheets/

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Cost estimates developed for 6 2-acre levee ponds, including production facilities, site selection and pond construction, feed storage, water supply, equipment, and production practices. A list of all Southern Regional Aquaculture Center factsheets (more than 150) are available at https://srac.tamu.edu/index.cfm/event/viewAllSheets/

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Provides instructions for artificial regeneration, site prep, seedings and planting to re-establish longleaf pine.  The guidelines conclude, “Longleaf pine has many desirable characteristics for landowners who have multiple-use forest management objectives. On appropriate sites, and with careful attention to detail during the regeneration phase, it is possible to enjoy the versatility of this species without compromising growth rates.” Read More »


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The mission of Western Grassland Initiative is to serve as the primary contributor to the implementation of conservation and management actions, through partnerships and cooperative efforts, resulting in improved species status, grassland habitats, and recreational opportunities for grassland dependent species across North America.

Read More »


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A review of bird census techniques opens with the statement that ‘birds are counted for a wide variety of reasons by a bewildering range of methods’. In the southeastern United States, a number of different survey techniques and protocols are used. Some form the foundation of regional, national and international avian monitoring programs, while others have the potential to do so. In order to promote awareness of what programs and protocols are available, this guide summarizes popular, multi-species bird monitoring programs and protocols that are currently used, or could be used, within the Southeast Partners in Flight region.

The guide is meant as a starting point for individuals seeking out information to assess the pros and cons of various protocols in addressing their project objectives. In those cases where the protocols are inextricably linked to a broader monitoring program, the program itself (e.g., North American Breeding Bird Survey) and/or the sampling scheme (e.g., Strategic Multi-scale Grassland Bird Population Monitoring) is summarized along with the protocol. Our focus was primarily on those protocols designed to measure abundance and demographic parameters.

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In recent years, there has been increased interest in establishing native warm season grasses (NWSG) and forbs as wildlife habitat. Commonly known as prairie or prairie grass, native grasslands and savannas, a forest/grassland complex with less than 50% tree coverage, historically dominated the landscape across much of the United States. These grasses and forbs grow during the warmer months of the year as opposed to cool season grasses such as fescue and brome.

Read More »

BMPs oriented more specifically toward farming & agriculture, energy efficiency and invasive & native species are also available on this site.

Wildlife Conservation news from the Houston Conservation Center
The following news articles are provided by the Google News service and do not reflect the views or imply an endorsement by the Houston Conservation Center and its affiliates. We cannot guarantee the relevance of the content of this page or any links that may be followed from the articles herein.
Google News
Texas Land Trends report shows value of conservation easements to ag, water, wildlife  AgriLife Today

COLLEGE STATION – The Texas Land Trends project of Texas A&M's Natural Resources Institute, or NRI, has published a special series report describing ...



World's biggest bee found: Wallace's giant bee has been rediscovered in Indonesia  Science Daily

Lost to science for decades and thought perhaps extinct, Wallace's giant bee (Megachile pluto) has been rediscovered in an Indonesian rainforest.



Texas Parks & Wildlife Proposes Changes for Hunting & Fishing  News/Talk 790 KFYO

Public comment is being accepted for numerous changes, including to fishing at Lake Alan Henry and the creation of a new javelina hunting season in the South ...



Cheetahs leaving Virginia Zoo in search of mates  13newsnow.com WVEC

NORFOLK, Va. — The cheetahs at The Virginia Zoo, Chester and Rico, will be leaving the zoo in search of mates across the country. The brothers have been at ...



A Texas trophy hunter reportedly paid $110K to kill a rare mountain goat in Pakistan  USA TODAY

A Texas man paid $110000 to hunt a rare mountain goat called the markhor in Pakistan, according to reports. PETA and other groups are reacting.



Panthers' kills of pets and livestock in SW Florida fell in 2018 but still concerning to residents  Naples Daily News

Reports of Florida panthers killing livestock or pets in Southwest Florida were down in 2018 after a record 2017, state figures show. The Florida Fish and Wildlife ...



Where the new law permits — and prevents — border barriers  The Washington Post

The 55 miles of new barriers authorized under the new government spending bill will be built in the easternmost section of the border, the Rio Grande Valley ...



Norma Fowler, Texas Perspectives: Fragile Texas wildlife lost in border wall furor  Waco Tribune-Herald

In debates about the southern border, it's easy to overlook our native plants and animals, which cannot speak for themselves even though they're deeply ...



How ‘Checkpoint Carlos,’ a Work of Art Along the Texas Border, Was Inspired by Memories of the Berlin Wall  Texas Monthly

As government land seizures roil the Valley, a German-born artist points to stark historical parallels.



Trump’s wall could be devastating for wildlife and endangered species along Mexico border  The Independent

As the fight continues over Donald Trump's demand to extend the border wall between the United States and Mexico, one thing is clear: Whatever the wall's ...



Why a Border Wall Could Mean Trouble for Wildlife  The New York Times

If the Trump administration extends the wall at the southern border, it could degrade important habitats for animals and plants, even birds and insects.



Wild Texas Film Tour comes back to Aggieland  Texas A&M The Battalion

The Wild Texas Film Tour has been making its way across the Lone Star State, and this Thursday, it's coming to Aggieland.



Texas Brigades accepting applications for summer leadership camps  Standard-Times

Texas Brigades, a nonprofit organization, is offering seven leadership camps that focus on natural resources and wildlife conservation.



Conserving the bobwhite quail population in Texas - Texas Hunting & Fishing  Lone Star Outdoor News

In the fall of 2010, the Northern bobwhite quail population plummeted in the Rolling Plains of Texas and Oklahoma, and it's never been the same. Why?



Thom Smith | NatureWatch: Proposed border wall will impact 93 endangered and threatened species  Berkshire Eagle

I have a friend that I have known since he was a young lad attending nature classes I conducted in the early 1970s. As a youngster, he was more than interested ...



Texas Brigades youth leadership summer camps accepting applications  AgriLife Today

Applications are being accepted for the Texas Brigades leadership camps. Located throughout Texas, these camps serve youth 13-17. Click to learn more.



Texas Claims The Third Dark Sky Sanctuary In The U.S. As Struggle Against Light Pollution Continues  Forbes

Devils River State Natural Area in Texas has been certified as an International Dark Sky Sanctuary, the highest order of recognition of an area's naturally dark ...



Texas Parks and Wildlife opens new access sites to Llano River - DailyTrib.com - Your Hill Country online news authority  DailyTrib.com

Anglers looking to enjoy more access to the Llano River have landed four spots to drop in their kayak or canoe or simply do a little bank fishing thanks to the ...



Texas Judge Upholds Endangered Species Act Protections for Golden-cheeked Warbler  Center for Biological Diversity

AUSTIN, Texas— A federal judge in Austin yesterday ruled that the golden-cheeked warbler should remain protected under the Endangered Species Act. The ...



FWC meeting addressed sharks, snapper and nonnative species  TCPalm

It was a busy two days at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission meeting in Gainesville. By day's end Thursday, the commission had approved ...



Woods, waters and wildlife  Sealy News

Every kid needs a mentor to teach shooting, hunting, fishing, safely driving a car, telling the truth – and living life. Unlike fastening their shoes, there are no ...



Climate adaptation: WCS awards $2.5 million to 13 US conservation projects  EurekAlert

WCS has announced 13 new grants to nonprofit organizations implementing on-the-ground, science-driven projects that will help wildlife and ecosystems adapt ...



U.S. prepares to start building more border walls in Texas  PBS NewsHour

HOUSTON — The U.S. government is preparing to begin construction of more border walls and fencing in South Texas' Rio Grande Valley, likely on federally ...



An Effort Is Underway To Restore Playa Lakes On The High Plains  HPPR

There are few elements more important for sustaining life on the High Plains than playa lakes. Yet, these circular lakes are all-too-often misunderstood or.



Wildlife advocates, tribes protest preparations for new border wall construction  ABC News

The federal government this week began moving bulldozers and construction vehicles to the south Texas border to begin building a small new section of border ...



Protection Sought: Cuellar seeks to protect SpaceX, wildlife refuges, from border wall  Brownsville Herald

As uncertainty continues about whether U.S. Customs and Border Protection's plan for a border wall could impact SpaceX, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat, ...



Conservation groups sue over national emergency  Monitor

The Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife and Animal Legal Defense Fund sued the Trump administration Saturday over the president's ...



Conservation Reserve Program in the 2018 Farm Bill  Farm Bureau News

CRP is a land retirement program that provides payments to agricultural landowners for temporary changes in land use or management with the goal of ...



World's largest bee found again in Indonesia, SE Asia News & Top Stories  The Straits Times

CANBERRA • The world's largest bee, which had not been seen since 1981, has been rediscovered in Indonesia, scientists said.. Read more at ...



It’s where DFW goes to get a little piece of the Hill Country. And it’s crumbling away  Fort Worth Star-Telegram

It has flooded three of the last four years at Cedar Hill State Park. Old farm buildings and restrooms need repairs. It's just a snapshot of what's happening across ...



Saving the bats, one cave at a time  WatertownDailyTimes.com

ELY, Nev. — A crew of five wildlife biologists wearing overalls, helmets and headlamps walked up the flanks of a juniper-studded mountain and climbed through ...



Can a Beloved Texas State Park Survive Trump’s Wall?  The Texas Observer

The state parks department has pleaded with the administration to save Bentsen state park from the wall. But the feds have shown little interest.



Dive site in West Palm Beach to be protected from collectors  TCPalm

It happened in October. A big truck was parked at Phil Foster Park just north of the Blue Heron Bridge, which connects Singer Island to the mainland in West ...



Border wall threatens nature tourism industry in South Texas  UPI News

The $463 million-a-year ecotourism industry in South Texas -- a top birding destination -- is bracing for the arrival of border wall construction crews.



As Grizzlies Come Back, Frustration Builds Over Continued Protections  Texas Public Radio

Trina Jo Bradley squints down at a plate-sized paw print, pressed into a sheet of shallow snow. She reaches down with fingers outstretched, hovering her.



Hot for Hot Cheetos? Texas doctors warn to lay off the spicy snack after spike in ulcers  WLOS

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KGBT) - It's the hottest snack in the Rio Grande Valley, snack shacks on every corner, selling what people here love the most.



A New Deterrent System Could Help Save Bats From Wind Turbines  Pacific Standard

Jamming bats' echolocation with ultrasound is showing promise in reducing fatalities at wind energy facilities.



A bright spot in dark times: Congress advances a major public-lands package  MinnPost

The White House is expected to give its blessing to what, by general agreement of the environmental commentariat, is the most extensive advance in protecting ...



Think Pink: Texas A&M student aids in discovery of fluorescent pink flying squirrel  AgriLife Today

The North American flying squirrel fluoresces pink at night under ultraviolet light, but the pink color is still a mystery. Click the link to learn more!



Zombie deer steadily approaching Texas  WOAI

SAN ANTONIO (WOAI/KABB) - Our worst fears have come true. Zombie Deer are real and they're coming for us (well, kind of). According to a recent post in the ...



State Lawmakers Aim To Lock In Funding For Texas Parks, Historic Sites  KERA News

For nearly a decade, the Texas parks department has hoped to turn a 4400-acre swath of pristine forest in North Texas into what some hope could be the.



Rare pangolins languish in China wildlife rescue system  KVEO-TV

WASHINGTON (AP) - When Chinese police found them in the trunk of a smuggler's car, 33 of the trafficked pangolins - endangered scaly mammals from ...



Toddler suffered liver, lung injuries after falling into Florida zoo's rhino exhibit, report says  KXXV News Channel 25

Two rhinos rammed a toddler with their snouts after she fell into an exhibit at Florida's Brevard Zoo, and the girl suffered a lacerated liver and bruised lung, ...



Land Conservation Bill Protecting Yellowstone Gateway Passes Senate: 'One of the Biggest Bipartisan Wins...Ever Seen in Congress'  Newsweek

The Senate passed the Natural Resources Management Act, which conserves and protects more than a million acres of federal land. The bill now goes to the ...



NatureFest Nurtures Outdoor Awareness at Jones Park | The Paper Magazine -Covering The Woodlands, Spring, Conroe & North Houston Areas  The Paper Magazine

NORTH HOUSTON, TX - Harris County Precinct 4 invites the public to connect with nature while learning about the environment during NatureFest Saturday, ...



The Vanishing Flights of the Monarch Butterfly  The New Yorker

Walking around my family's property in upstate New York last summer, I noticed something I hadn't seen in years: scores of monarch butterflies flying around the ...



6 ways the border wall could disrupt the environment  National Geographic

Trump's plan to build a wall from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific could come with unintended consequences for wildlife and people.



Constitutional fight over Trump border wall begins  Constitution Daily

A group of 16 states asked a federal court in California on Monday night to block the federal government from building a wall along the border between the U.S. ...



Las Cruces Area Groups Join Lawsuit To Fight Trump Emergency Declaration  KRWG

Commentary: The Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) filed a lawsuit with Sierra Club, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, to.



Texas Kills Conservation Plan for Lizard Threatened by Fossil Fuel Extraction  Center for Biological Diversity

AUSTIN, Texas— The dunes sagebrush lizard, a rare species threatened by fossil fuel extraction in Texas and New Mexico, is now completely unprotected after ...



Trump EPA OKs 'Emergency' to Dump Bee-Killing Pesticide on 16 Million Acres  EcoWatch

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reported this week that in 2018 it issued so-called "emergency" approvals to spray sulfoxaflor—an insecticide the ...



Some Texas ranches tout hunting exotic animals as a way to support conservation  ABC News

A sprawling, high-fenced, 18000-acre preserve is home to over 60 different species of majestic animals, including giraffes, Cape buffalos and gemsbok.



A future for red wolves may be found on Galveston Island, Texas  Science Daily

Red wolves, once nearly extinct, again teeter on the abyss. New research finds red wolf ancestry in Texas -- providing opportunities for additional conservation ...



Powderhorn Ranch becomes wildlife management area | Calhoun  Victoria Advocate

More than 15000 acres of the Powderhorn Ranch along the Texas coast in Calhoun County, prime unspoiled coastal prairie, is now a state wildlife management ...



Widely misinterpreted report still shows catastrophic animal decline  National Geographic

The World Wildlife Fund For Nature's Living Planet Report released this week describes a catastrophic decline in animal populations the world over. But it was ...



Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration's Texas Border-wall Waivers  Center for Biological Diversity

WASHINGTON— Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today for waiving 28 conservation laws to speed construction of the border wall along the ...



What to Expect at DSC South Texas' Annual Wildlife Gala - Texas Hunting & Fishing  Lone Star Outdoor News

Story by DSC South Texas. With 15+ extravagant Live Auction items up for grabs, full open bar and delicious catered food by the RK Group, the 2019 DSC ...



Once Common, Texas Horned Lizard Now Being Captive-Bred and Reintroduced  National Geographic

The horned lizard, the state reptile of Texas, is up against a myriad of threats. Scientists are hoping reintroduction will help it survive.



The Richest People In Texas, 2018  Forbes

By Chris Helman, Linh Nguyen and the Forbes Wealth Team. Patron tequila tycoon John Paul DeJoria and wife Eloise at Hearst Castle.Patrick McMullan via ...



Has Hunting Become a Rich Man’s Game?  Texas Monthly

When Andrew Sansom was named executive director of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department in 1990, he boldly took on the challenge of uniting ...



'The Snow Leopard Project' Puts Spotlight On Afghanistan's Wildlife  Texas Public Radio

In the city of Kabul, Afghanistan, there is a "green, leafy oasis" called Shahr-e Naw Park — a place that briefly became a staging ground for.



U.S. officials urged to reconsider approval of black rhino trophy import  HSUS News

WASHINGTON—Conservation and animal-welfare groups today urged (PDF) Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife *Service* to reconsider ...



What A Butterfly Species' 'Lethal Evolutionary Trap' Teaches About Wildlife Conservation  Texas Standard

You don't have to be a biologist to know that we humans can and do heavily influence populations of the animals with whom we share the planet – often for the ...



'Every day a new adventure': 2014 GFHS graduate works for wildlife conservation in Zambia  Great Falls Tribune

Chase Dart graduated Great Falls High School with visions of engineering in his head. Instead, today he's a field ecologist working to protect lions and wild dogs ...



2018 highlights: Wind power takes wildlife conservation to the next level - Into the Wind  Into the Wind - The AWEA Blog

Last year, the American Wind Wildlife Institute (AWWI) celebrated its 10 year anniversary. And there was no better way to mark the occasion than the creation of ...



Red wolf DNA found in mysterious Texas canines Read more  Princeton University

Though red wolves were declared extinct in the wild by 1980, a team of biologists has found their DNA in a group of canines living on Galveston Island off the ...



Houston Zoo’s new black bear exhibit promotes conservation, awareness  Houston Chronicle

Two North American black bears get a new 6000 square foot exhibit space at the Houston Zoo as officials urge the public not to shoot or feed bears they see in ...



Trump's Visit to Texas-Mexico Border Intensifies Wildlife Concerns  Public News Service

MCALLEN, Texas – As President Donald Trump visits the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas to promote his proposed wall, wildlife conservationists are sounding the ...



License plates featuring bass fish enhance TPWD conservation  Times Record News

Purchasing Texas Parks and Wildlife Department large-mouth bass conservation license plates aids conservation.



Texas Parks and Wildlife: State park could close if Trump builds border wall through it  The Texas Tribune

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has warned U.S. Border Patrol that it could be forced to shutter a beloved state park on the southern tip of the state if ...



Butterfly Preserve On The Border Threatened By Trump's Wall  NPR

Editor's note: This story was updated on Dec. 3. On an average day at the National Butterfly Center, a 100-acre wildlife center and botanical garden in South ...



Trump Administration Waives Environmental Laws for Texas Border Wall  Center for Biological Diversity

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas— The Trump administration today announced that it will waive 28 laws to speed construction of gates and other border-wall ...



DNA of wolf declared extinct in wild lives on in Texas pack  The Associated Press

DALLAS (AP) — Researchers say a pack of wild canines found frolicking near the beaches of the Texas Gulf Coast carries a substantial amount of red wolf ...



Extinct wolves may have newfound cousins  Washington Post

Scientists surprised to discover wild canines in Texas with red wolf genes.



Born Free USA Presents "A Celebration of Wildlife" Fundraising Event for US Wildlife Conservation Efforts  PR Newswire

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 19, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, is hosting a major fundraising event ...



Lesser prairie-chicken population on the rise, but advocates say it's not enough  The Texas Tribune

The latest aerial survey shows there are thousands more of the grouse in the Texas Panhandle and four surrounding states. Still, the total is tens of thousands ...



Texas State Aquarium hires specialist whose job is to focus on animal happiness  Corpus Christi Caller-Times

Does anyone ever really wonder if a fish is happy? Catherine Razal does. Or at least it's her job to look into it. The Texas State Aquarium has recently hired a ...



Analysis | The Energy 202: Trump's border wall would hurt Texas wildlife, government experts warned  The Washington Post

THE LIGHTBULB. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke arrives for an event in the East Room of the White House in Washington. ((AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File).



Photos: These animals are bouncing back from the brink of extinction  National Geographic

The rate at which humans are driving other species to extinction has reached new heights. Scientists estimate that 150 to 200 species of plants and animals now ...



Decline in hunters threatens economy  EverythingLubbock.com

The tradition of hunting could be fading away because officials at Texas Parks and Wildlife said the number of hunters in America is steadily declining.



Endangered Species Protection, Critical Habitat Sought for Lizard in Texas, New Mexico  Center for Biological Diversity

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity and Defenders of Wildlife today petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife *Service* to protect the dunes sagebrush ...



Tyler man to be inducted into Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame  CBS19.tv KYTX

TYLER, Texas — The Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame committee has announced Alan Haynes, of Tyler, the former CEO and President of The Sportster ...



A Humane World  HSUS News

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife *Service* will allow an American trophy hunter who killed a critically endangered black rhino to import the animal's body parts into the ...



A Death Of Ethics: Is Hunting Destroying Itself?  Mountain Journal

Right now, as you read these words, it is perfectly legal in the state of Wyoming for a person to climb on the back of a snowmobile and chase down wild wolves, ...



Trump’s border wall will destroy wildlife habitat and create 6,500 acres of “no man’s lands”  Vox.com

The Department of Homeland Security is moving forward to build 17 miles of border barriers through protected areas in Texas.



All-women film team takes on border wall on behalf of all at-risk wildlife  Mother Nature Network

When you think about the border wall, it's easy to slip into the economics of it, the culture clashes, the racial tensions, and sadly, even the flame wars on Twitter ...



Pack of Wild Dogs in Texas Carry DNA of Nearly Extinct Red Wolf  Smithsonian.com

Red wolves were declared extinct in the wild in 1980, but a new study suggests the species' DNA lives on in a pack of Texan canines.



Endangered animals could get life-saving boost from oil, gas funds under new bill  USA TODAY

The Recovering America's Wildlife Act would shift $1.3 billion a year in oil and gas royalties to state wildlife conservation measures.



Trump Administration Waives Environmental Laws to Build Texas Border Wall in Protected Nature Areas  Center for Biological Diversity

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas— The Trump administration announced today that it will waive dozens of environmental laws to speed border-wall construction ...



Faced with failure, state to propose new plan to protect West Texas lizard  Texas Tribune

The state comptroller's office went back to the drawing board after the failure of a 6-year-old plan to protect the dunes sagebrush lizard that relied on voluntary ...



Is Texas’ Overcrowded, Underfunded State Parks System Being Loved to Death?  The Texas Observer

Texans love their state parks. But our state's public lands are overcrowded and rapidly deteriorating. Maybe it's time to take the long view.



Interior Dept. officials downplayed federal wildlife experts' concerns about Trump’s border wall, documents show  The Washington Post

Federal government scientists raised red flags last year about President Trump's proposed wall for the U.S.-Mexico border, suggesting that it could harm the ...



Rancher leaves behind legacy: Frank Yturria praised for his conservation work  Brownsville Herald

A leading light of conservation in South Texas has been extinguished with the passing of rancher and philanthropist Frank Yturria, who died at a Houston ...



‘American Wolf’ recounts death of a world-famous wild animal from Yellowstone  Houston Chronicle

Novelists dream of creating a character like O-Six. Noble, ferocious, maternal, the alpha-female heroine of Nate Blakeslee's “American Wolf” all but vaults off the ...



Trump Administration Refuses to Ban Wildlife-killing M-44 'Cyanide Bombs'  Center for Biological Diversity

WASHINGTON— The Environmental Protection Agency has refused to ban M-44s, commonly known as cyanide bombs, which cause agonizing deaths for ...



'Death sentence': butterfly sanctuary to be bulldozed for Trump's border wall  The Guardian

More than 200 species make their homes at America's most diverse sanctuary, but construction through the reserve could begin in February.



More tigers live in US back yards than in the wild. Is this a catastrophe?  The Guardian

It is easier to buy a tiger in some states than to adopt a rescue dog – and only 6% of the animals are housed in approved facilities. This is bad for the big cats ...



Tigers prowl Texas backyards  DW (English)

A couple of thousand tigers — many owned as pets — live in Texas. That gives the US state the second-largest population of the endangered species in the ...



Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission mulls more limits on alligator gar  Dallas News

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission has taken the pole position in cinching the noose tighter on already restrictive alligator gar harvest...



With Family Plots and Migratory Hubs in Its Crosshairs, the Border Wall Looms Large in Texas  Pacific Standard

After securing over $500 million in March to build a border barrier, the Department of Homeland Security has begun laying the foundation for the first miles of ...


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