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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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Texas Parks And Wildlife Honors Black Conservation Heroes, Past And Present

Texas Parks and Wildlife honors Black conservation heroes, past and present

Though often unheralded in their own times, Black contributions to conservation, parks, outdoor recreation and more are significant and will be celebrated throughout February’s Black History Month programs from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Park rangers from all over Texas, including the Buffalo Soldier Heritage Outreach Program and the Texas Outdoor Family staff, will debut a new series of 15 virtual programs to spotlight historical figures, and we'll introduce a few of our Black colleagues across the agency and…

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This Land Is Our Land

This land is our land

Gabe Vasquez first visited New Mexico when he was 8 years old, during a fishing trip to the Rio Grande with his father and older brother. They traveled from their home just south of the border in Ciudad Juárez and planned to camp in state parks along the river. Even now, Vasquez recalls the air of excitement in the car as he and his brother fought over who would get the Superman fishing rod and who would get Spiderman, both purchased…

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US Agency Cancels Trump Policy On Conservation Purchases

US agency cancels Trump policy on conservation purchases

U.S. Interior Department officials on Thursday canceled a Trump administration directive that gave local and state officials power to block purchases of land and water for conservation. Acting Interior Secretary Scott de la Vega rescinded a November order from former Secretary David Bernhardt that had been criticized by both Republicans and Democrats, who said the Trump administration ignored their wishes when it changed a program that’s paid for billions of dollars in conservation work over more than five decades. Read…

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Birds At Home: Watch Them Come And Go

Birds at home: Watch them come and go

Are you ready for the return of some precedented events in our lives? We have endured so much uncertainty over the last year, but fortunately (and with weather aside), nature and wildlife remain a reliable source of predictability.  The lives of birds cycle through breeding and non-breeding seasons, and for many, a significant migration period between them. In Texas we have migratory birds that breed here in the summer, others that just pass through while traveling through the Central Flyway, and many that come down to over-winter with our mild temperatures.   Read more from Stephen Ramirez with Texas Land Conservancy 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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Land Revival

Land Revival

When prospective landowners look for their slice of Hill Country, they may look for running water, mature trees, bluebonnets, a scenic vista, or a pristine canvas. Not Paula Stone. When Stone first set eyes on her property at the edge of Fredericksburg, her realtor would not even step into the house. “There was nothing inside,” she recalled, “but dead animals and rat droppings.” Read more from HCA’s own Daniel Oppenheimer from Rock and Vine Magazine here.

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Partners Launch Axis Deer Control Project In Texas Hill Country

Partners Launch Axis Deer Control Project in Texas Hill Country

LEARN MORE: You can learn more about ongoing efforts related to the Axis Deer Control Project here.  The Hill Country Alliance, Texas Tech University’s Department of Natural Resources Management, and partners have launched the 2021 Axis Deer Control Project and are encouraging landowners and hunters to participate. Axis deer are an exotic species that were introduced from India to the Texas Hill Country in the 1930s. Since their introduction, this species has proliferated in several portions of the Hill Country,…

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Donor Gives Dripping Springs 300 Acres To Create Park

Donor gives Dripping Springs 300 acres to create park

It's not every day that a city gets a $5.7 million parkland donation. The city of Dripping Springs just did — specifically, 300 acres to create a park that will be almost 30 acres bigger than Austin's beloved Zilker Park. Earlier this month, Dripping Springs City Council accepted a donation deed for the 300 acres from Austin developer and philanthropist Dick Rathgeber and Rathgeber Investment Company LTD. Read more from Shonda Novak with Austin American-Statesman here. 

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