Archive for the 'TPWD TV' Category

TPW TV — Hop for the Future

Friday, August 18th, 2017
Collecting data on Kangaroo Rat.

Collecting data on Kangaroo Rat.

This is Passport to Texas

According to Dr. Randy Simpson, kangaroo rats are…

They’re about the handsomest rodent that you can find.

The problem is, you can’t find them. At least not many of them, anyway. Simpson is Wildlife Biology Program Director at Texas State. During a Texas Parks and Wildlife TV segment airing next week on PBS, graduate students, including Silas Ott, survey the species near the Texas/Oklahoma border.

So, it does seem to be pretty rare geographically. It’s only been found in 11 counties in Texas. And within the past 20 years, it’s only been found in five of those 11 counties.

Ott and his cohorts locate fresh burrows and set traps and cameras. Dr. Simpson.

Are we seeing just the last vestiges of populations that are hanging on? We don’t know. I think that that’s the reason Texas Parks and Wildlife and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service want to find that out.

Nathan Rains is a Wildlife Diversity Biologist with Texas Parks and Wildlife. He’s assisting Texas State, and says the agency helped to fund the research through its grant program.

It’s obviously declining. We don’t have a lot of great information on this species, so we’re trying to learn as much as we can. But it’s a species we’re concerned about, and it’s been a concern for awhile.

Catch the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV segment Hop for the Future next week on PBS. Check your local listings.

The Wildlife restoration program supports our series funds kangaroo rat surveys and management in Texas.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

TPW TV Mobile Storytellers

Tuesday, August 1st, 2017
Texas State journalism students using mobile devices to tell stories about Texas state parks.

Journalism students use mobile phones to tell stories about Texas state parks.

This is Passport to Texas

Dale Blasingame uses cell phones in his mobile storytelling class.

This mobile storytelling class is one that I pitched because it marries my 2 loves which are technology and being outdoors.

Blasingame teaches journalism at Texas State. He brought his class to Garner State Park so they could combine their journalistic skills and phones’ cameras to tell stories.

They’re going to be working primarily with their phone, shooting on their phone and then editing on their phone as well. These skills are just how it’s done now. Texas Parks and Wildlife has said it needs help getting college-aged students into the parks. So that’s what a lot of our video projects are going to focus on.

Some stories were immediately uploaded to social media.

Hi, I’m Katy! And I’m Dy from the School of Journalism and Mass Comm. And we’re taking over the Texas State Snapchat.

Snapchat is a social media platform for sharing photos and videos.

So we’re going to be interviewing people and learning about their experiences with the outdoors. With Snapchat I don’t have to think too much and just kind of share what’s going on right now.

Watch them in action next week on a Texas Parks and Wildlife TV segment on PBS called Mobile Storytellers; check your local listings.

What I really like about mobile storytelling is that it’s a lot easier to stay connected to where you are and what you’re doing.

That’s our show… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

TPW TV — The Bee Searcher

Friday, July 14th, 2017
Hardworking native bumblebee

Hardworking native bumblebee

This is Passport to Texas

Jessica Beckham is on a quest to catch some fuzzy flying
Insects.

Today we are out here surveying bumblebees in a little roadside area of Denton County.

She’s been studying bumblebees at the University of North Texas while pursuing a Ph.D. in environmental science. Next week, the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV series on PBS follows her efforts in a segment called The Bee Searcher.

Here in Texas, we have sweat bees, digger bees, leaf cutter bees, resin bees. About 700 to 800 species of bees that are native bees. Including nine species of bumblebees.

We know about honeybees and colony collapse disorder, but Jessica Beckham wants to know more about the plight of native bumblebees.

I’m studying native pollinators, bumblebees in particular, because native pollinators may serve as an insurance policy against these losses of honeybees.

Insect pollinators, including bumblebees are responsible for about 80 percent of the pollination of wild flowering plants and about 75 percent of our agricultural plants.

Bumblebees are great pollinators, because the bees deliberately collect pollen and they have a lot more hair than honeybees, and they move a lot of pollen from flower to flower.

View the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV segment The Bee Searcher next week on PBS. Check your local listings.

The Wildlife restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

TPW TV — Razing Cane

Friday, July 7th, 2017
Arrundo Donax is ready for its close-up.

Arrundo Donax is ready for its close-up.

This is Passport to Texas

Mike Eckert lives just outside of Fredericksburg. He’s battling with an invasive plant called Giant Reed, or Arrundo Donax that’s taking over a creek on his property.

As best as I understand, it’s doesn’t spread from seeds. It spreads from pieces washing out and lodging somewhere, and then starting to grow again.

Next week on the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV series watch a segment called Razing Cane that explores the impact of this invader that threatens nearly every river system in Texas.

We’re almost to the Pedernales. Another half mile and you’ll hit the Pedernales down here. And they’ve got this stuff in the Pedernales, too. And it’s spreading pretty quick. And it’s all over. Everywhere you go, it’s there. It’s going to take a massive effort to wipe it out. And I’m not sure they’ll ever wipe it out.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Aquatic invasive species specialist, Monica McGarrity and a team of biologists is fighting back. They’re using an herbicide that will hopefully kill this introduced invasive weed.

Arrundo is a grass, but it’s a grass on steroids. It grows 30 to 40 feet tall. Huge, dense canes. So dense that wildlife can’t even get through it. And so this is a really aggressive plant, and it’s important to take equally aggressive action to manage it.

View the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV segment Razing Cane next week on PBS. Check your local listings.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

TPW TV – Steve Nelle: Biologist or Psychologist?

Friday, June 16th, 2017
Steve Nelle speaking to a group of landowners.

Steve Nelle speaking to a group of landowners.

This is Passport to Texas

Author and Hill Country Land Trust member Jill Nokes holds Steve Nelle in high regard.

He has this knack for connecting with people wherever they are.

Nelle, a natural resource specialist is part biologist and part psychologist.

Even though we’re trained in the technical skills of plants and animals and soil and conservation, when we go onto farms and ranches, we’re really more in the people business.

This is especially true when evaluating damage following natural disasters. The Texas Parks and Wildlife TV Series on PBS features a segment where Steve Nelle visits landowners, like Bill Johnson, affected by the Blanco Floods.

 [Bill Johnson] There was just devastation. The riparian area was stripped of all vegetation. With two big floods in one year, you get pretty down and you sort of feel hopeless almost. But he reminds you that nature is very resilient and it will recover.

[Steve Nelle] I’ll walk with the landowner across an area that’s been devastated and find a few good things. And you can show them how nature’s trying to recover and heal this area back up.

Catch the segment about Steve Nelle next week on the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV series on PBS. Check your local listings.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series….funded by your purchase of fishing and hunting equipment and motorboat fuels.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.