Texas Water Symposium planned for April 27 in Fredericksburg: Invasive Species Impacts On Water Resources, Economics and Ecosystems

  • March 28, 2017
  • News

Monica McGarrity, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department – Invasive Arundo donax can overwhelm Hill Country creeks and rivers. Pictured here in the Pedernales River basin

The final Texas Water Symposium of the 2016-2017 series has been set for 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 27th at the Texas Tech Hill Country University Center, Fredericksburg, Texas. The Texas Water Symposium is free and open to the public.

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Join our panel in a discussion of potential costs of invasive species to native wildlife and infrastructure, approaching threats, and the most effective ways for Hill Country boaters, ranchers and landowner to protect our waterways.

Invasions of non-native plants, animals and parasites are regarded by biologists as a major threat to biological diversity worldwide and can have major impacts on water resources and economics. They threaten the survival of native plants and animals, interfere with ecosystems and hybridize with native species. They have created specific and immediate threats to our river’s native aquatic flora and fauna, and in many cases threaten the productivity of the industrial and water supply infrastructure upon which our economy relies.

Invasive Arundo cane, Zebra Mussels, and Hydrilla are among a host of aquatic plants and animals that are not native to Texas and compete with native animals and plants for food and space. Because introduced species lack natural enemies in our waterways, they can multiply and spread at an alarming rate, interfering with boat traffic, affecting water quality and quantity, and causing a range of other problems.

Tim Birdsong, aquatic biologist and Ecosystem/Habitat Assessment Chief of Inland Fisheries for Texas Parks and Wildlife will moderate a panel of invasive species specialists in a discussion of invasives in the Hill Country, their potential costs to native wildlife and infrastructure, approaching threats, and the most effective ways for the Hill Country to protect our waterways. The full program can be found at www.hillcountryalliance.org/texaswatersymposium.

Join Texas Tech University, Texas Public Radio, Schreiner University and the Hill Country Alliance as we gather diverse perspectives on the challenges of invasive species in Texas – and the future of Texas water resources. Each session is free and open to the public. The hour-long program begins at 7:00 p.m., followed by discussion time with Q&A. The events are recorded and aired on Texas Public Radio one week later.

The Symposium is a partnership project of Schreiner University, Texas Tech University, Texas Public Radio and the Hill Country Alliance. For more information, visit the Texas Water Symposium, and listen to past shows online. To stay informed about future programs, subscribe at www.hillcountryalliance.org.

The Hill Country Alliance is a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to raise public awareness and build community support around the need to preserve the natural resources and heritage of the Central Texas Hill Country. Visit us at www.hillcountryalliance.org.