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Director’s Notes – July 2021: Join As A Sustaining Neighbor And Receive A Special Gift!

Director’s Notes – July 2021: Join as a Sustaining Neighbor and Receive a Special Gift!

Dear Hill Country Neighbors, It finally feels like we’re reaching the light at the end of a long tunnel. Summer in the Hill Country, particularly when fueled by abundant spring rains, is a season for slowing down—appreciating the shade of an ancient oak tree, the cold waters of a spring-fed creek, or the sweet taste of a Hill Country peach. And as we return to a new form of normal, we’re increasingly reconnecting in person with the neighbors, partners, landowners and friends we’ve missed…

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Texas Leaders Made A Big Mistake Ignoring Water This Session. But Not All Hope Is Lost.

Texas leaders made a big mistake ignoring water this session. But not all hope is lost.

Last weekend I paddled on the Blanco River with my family. We swam in spring-fed swimming holes, fly fished and lounged in shallow sections of the river, which was flowing nicely thanks to recent rains that ended drought conditions across Texas. Read more from Vanessa Puig-Williams with Environmental Defense Fund here. 

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Hill Country Alliance Limited Edition Design – Meet The Artist: Olivia Gray

Hill Country Alliance Limited Edition Design – Meet the Artist: Olivia Gray

The Hill Country Alliance is proud to announce the release of a limited edition Hill Country creation, designed by local artist Olivia Gray. Olivia Gray resides in Wimberley and is a junior at Southwestern University in Georgetown. She is working on a double major in Environmental Studies and Visual Arts. The drawing she submitted to the Hill Country Alliance is her pen-and-ink representation of the natural wonders of the Texas Hill Country. “My design for Hill Country Alliance portrays the…

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Folks In The Field: Katherine Romans

Folks in the field: Katherine Romans

Starting as the Landowner Outreach Manager at Hill Country Alliance, Katherine Romans love for the region combined with her non-profit and policy expertise made her a natural fit to become the Executive Director for the regional non-profit organization. Romans lives in Austin with her husband and two kids. Destination Dripping Springs sat down with Katherine to chat about the Hill Country Alliance and your conservation work. Read more from Destination Dripping Springs here. 

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Rebecca Creek Salamanders Could Warrant Federal Protection

Rebecca Creek salamanders could warrant Federal protection

Lizard-like amphibians with elongated bodies and tails, short limbs and external gills are the focus of scientists keeping tabs on groundwater health in Rebecca Creek. In April, Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA) staff headed out to the area with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services (USFWS) and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) scientists to collect salamanders to help determine what species are present and whether they warrant federal protection under the Endangered Species Act. Read more from Stephanie Johnson with My…

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Easing Into Watershed Protection With Taxes And Bonds Featuring Lon Shell, Frank Davis, And Phillip Covington

Easing into watershed protection with taxes and bonds featuring Lon Shell, Frank Davis, and Phillip Covington

Episode Notes  In this episode, Leslie Bobby of Southern Regional Extension Forestry talks to Frank Davis and Commissioner Lon Shell, important water management players in Texas's Hill Country region, an area marked by considerable growth and development in recent years. They discuss how communities around San Antonio are using taxes and those around Austin are using bonds to ensure they have clean water for generations to come. About the Podcast How the River Flows highlights how our region’s communities are…

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Hill Country Alliance 15th Annual Photo Contest Kicks Off

Hill Country Alliance 15th annual photo contest kicks off

Theme of contest is “Solace and Strength: Portraits of Resilience in the Texas Hill Country” The last year has been unimaginably difficult for so many of us. We have missed milestones and family members, traded neighborly potlucks for Zooms, and seen our worlds upended time and again. Through it all, the rugged beauty of the Hill Country has been restorative, offering calm and solace in a growing din of uncertainty. For the 15th annual Hill Country photo contest, HCA asks…

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Axis Deer Had Overrun The Hill Country. The Winter Storm Devastated Them.

Axis deer had overrun the Hill Country. The winter storm devastated them.

LEARN MORE: You can learn more about ongoing efforts related to the Axis Deer Control Project here.  The spotted fawn was leaning against the screen door of Daniel Oppenheimer’s back porch near Luckenbach. Oppenheimer found it when he ventured outside on the first morning of last week’s record freeze. The fawn had died in the night. Oppenheimer’s power, water, and Internet would not be restored for several days. With little else to do, he wandered the land with his dog.…

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Axis Deer Management Project Underway In Hill Country

Axis deer management project underway in Hill Country

Axis deer are an exotic game species first introduced in the Texas Hill Country in the 1930s. Since then, the population has grown exponentially, leading to groups launching an Axis Deer Control project. There are currently more than 6,000 free-range Axis deer in Texas, according to data from the Texas Invasive Species Institute. Read more from Texas Farm Bureau here. 

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AACOG-led Consortium Seeks Sentinel Landscape Status For JBSA-Camp Bullis

AACOG-led consortium seeks Sentinel Landscape status for JBSA-Camp Bullis

Joint Base San Antonio-Camp Bullis sits astride the Southern Edwards Plateau on the Northwest edge of San Antonio. This gem of JBSA is vital to military training and readiness as it provides a rugged tactical training area in this Texas Hill Country landscape essential to the training of all military services’ combat medics and Air Force security forces. In an effort to protect and sustain JBSA-Camp Bullis’ mission, the Alamo Area Council of Governments, or AACOG, is leading a consortium of 16…

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