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moss Brewster Buescher Dickens bird watching horned lizard birding trail river spoonbill

Photos shot for the January-February issue





900th Issue!

We just happened to do a little math, and guess what we discovered? This publication is our magazine's 900th issue.

The very variety you see displayed in this edition is a microcosm of the agency's many divisions and duties. From oysters in the Gulf to threatened bats to school campouts to winter fishing and hikes, we'll take you there to learn the latest facts, share in our hopes for the future and observe the thrilling beauty and wonder that bless the Lone Star State.

Bat Killer

White-nose syndrome may cause 'the most precipitous wildlife collapse of the past century.'

Melissa Meierhofer’s life is in a ditch … literally.

As a doctoral student in wildlife and fisheries at Texas A&M University and a research associate with the school’s Institute of Renewable Natural Resources, Meierhofer spends much of her professional life down in culverts in search of bats.

“It’s my job to go places where people report seeing bats to investigate where they hibernate and why they choose that location,” she explains. These days she’s working with urgency as the invasive fungus known to cause white-nose syndrome, a devastating disease in bats, has invaded Texas bat colonies.

(read more)

Oyster Coast

Threats to our favorite bivalve result in conservation efforts on the half-shell.

The murky Aransas Bay water laps gently against a half-finished seawall. An assembly line of volunteers, mostly high school students in brightly colored shirts proclaiming “Sink Your Shucks,” lays the bricks.

This seawall, a few dozen yards from shore, isn’t intended to keep anything out. Instead, it invites new life to feed, filter and proliferate. These bricks are bags of cultch, or oyster shells. On this May morning at Goose Island State Park, volunteers have bagged 40,000 pounds of them to be placed in the bay.

(read more)

Camping at School

Campus campouts extend education beyond the physical classroom.

The stillness of the warm spring night is broken by the occasional sounds of zippers pulled up and down and stifled youthful giggles. Flashlights flick on and off like fireflies as families settle down in their tents across the campground. Kids with bits of toasted marshmallow still clinging to their lips begin to dream about the stories they’d just heard around the campfire, tales of days long ago and heroes who tamed the frontier.

Pull back a bit to expand the view, and you’ll see that this is no ordinary park or campground. These families are getting a taste of the “wild” life in their own neighborhood, in their own schoolyard. This is a campus campout, the newest way to enjoy the outdoors with friends and family.

“When do we get to go camping and build a fire?” That’s always the first request we’d hear from excited kids who joined the Camp Fire program.

(read more)



KTW 2011 coverKTW 2011 cover

Keep Texas Wild

It's not just for kids. If you like nature-related topics in an easy-to-read format, you can find three years of our popular Keep Texas Wild issues and the teacher resources to go along with them.

    Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine