Return of the Guadalupe Bass

June 19th, 2019

Guadalupe Bass (Micropterus treculii)

This is Passport to Texas

Dang it! Was that a fish? Yes, He was right in that foam line!

Anglers like Courtney and Brandon Robinson love to fish for Guadalupe bass, named for the Guadalupe River.

Fish on! This is why I love catching Guads, they’re little fish, but they use the river to fight!

The Guadalupe is a stronghold stream for this lone star native, which the legislature dubbed the state fish of Texas in 1989. Decades ago, this little fish seemed destined for extinction. But today it’s coming back.

I want my kids to catch Guadalupe bass. And I want them to be able to do it in the same places that I do.

Chris Johnson leads guided fly-fishing trips. The beautiful rivers the bass live in have a growing army of passionate advocates working to keep these waters clean.

 At end of the day, lovers will always work harder than workers. And if you love what you’re doing, and you love what you’re about, you love your fish, you love your water, you love your state, you love the ground that it flows through, then you’re going to fight to protect it.

Learn more about efforts to restore the Guadalupe Bass and preserve our rivers on our podcast Under the Texas Sky this July. Find it at underthetexassky.org, and wherever you get your podcasts.

The Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series.

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

TPW TV: Educating the Educators

June 18th, 2019
Project Wild

Project Wild

This is Passport to Texas

On any given Saturday, someone in Texas is probably getting trained in Project Wild. Kiki Corey oversees the program for Texas Parks and Wildlife.

Project WILD is professional development for educators to help them teach about wildlife and wildlife issues.

Susan Campbell, Education Coordinator for the San Antonio Natural area, says Project WILD isn’t jut about learning the science of nature.

[Susan] You can also teach literacy, you can teach mathematics, you can teach social studies.

[Kiki] The Project WILD activities are experience-based. Regardless of the level of your students, everyone in the class will have shared the same experience with the content and then the teacher has something to work from.

See Project WILD in action on the TPW TV series.

The bear went over the mountain. The bear went over the mountain. The bear went over the mountain. He ate the fish on the mountain, as much as he could eat.

Watch Educating the Educators, the week of June 23, on the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV series on PBS. Check your local listings.

Out series receives support in part from RAM Trucks: Built to Serve.

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

TPW TV: Billy Hassell and the Art of Conservation

June 13th, 2019
Billy Hassell's Powderhorn Ranch

Billy Hassell’s Powderhorn Ranch

This is Passport to Texas

Billy Hassell lives in the urban world of Fort Worth; yet, he’s always been drawn to the natural world.

Reconnecting with nature in a small way, in a very urban environment… it calms the soul somehow if you can slow down. We live fast-paced lives and we’re kind of conditioned, I think, to believe we have to live in rush all the time.

He doesn’t rush, but he does brush. Billy’s a full-time artist who focuses on nature.

My work has always been inspired by nature. I grew up in a time when there were still some open spaces and creeks and I got to experience a little bit of nature even though I grew up in a pretty urban environment. I guess my love of nature was born from those experiences, and I’ve been kind of searching for that throughout the rest of my life. I’ve been seeking out opportunities to be out in nature and find places to inspire my work.

And inspiration is all around. He recently found it at Powderhorn Ranch.

I find a lot of inspiration as an artist in a place like this, and as I learn more and more about it, I’m fascinated by the complexities of it and how practically every plant and every little creature plays a role in the overall balance of a place.

See Billy Hassell and his art in a segment of the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV series on PBS the week of June 16. Check your local listings.

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

Benefits of Conservation License Plates

June 12th, 2019

Whitetail deer conservation license plate

This is Passport to Texas

Established in 2000, Texas Parks & Wildlife’s conservation license plate program has raised millions of dollars for wildlife conservation.

Grossing more than $1.2 million dollars since it launched back in 2002, the White-tailed Deer plate benefits big game management and hunting programs in Texas. This past April, a Desert Bighorn Sheep plate joined the lineup.

15- The revenue generated from those two license plates goes directly towards the research and management of big game species in Texas. Which means the research and management of white-tailed deer, mule deer, pronghorn, desert bighorn sheep and javelina.

Mitch Lockwood is the Big Game Program Director for Texas Parks and Wildlife

We’re very fortunate to have this revenue that we can use to leverage more federal Pittman Robertson funds. We’re basically able to quadruple the revenue generated from this license plate.

The Texas desert bighorn sheep restoration program has been one of the most successful wildlife restoration programs of its kind.

The population was extirpated from the trans Pecos region back in the sixties and we acquired some animals from western states. Those two populations have responded very well to those early reintroduction efforts. So, now were taking those surplus animals and we’re starting to put sheep into mountain ranges that haven’t seen sheep in decades

Learn how to obtain your conservation license plate at conservationplate.org.

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

New Conservation License Plate to Drive You Wild

June 11th, 2019

Conservation Plate, Desert Bighorn Sheep

This is Passport to Texas

Thousands of Texas motorists have contributed to wildlife conservation efforts with a simple purchase. Thirty dollars for a Texas Parks & Wildlife conservation license plate.

We’re really excited to announce that we’re launching a new desert bighorn sheep conservation license plate.

Janis Johnson is with the Conservation License Plate program at Texas Parks and Wildlife.

This is a real beauty. The first time that we’ve used a photograph on a license plate. It’s a really clear view of this majestic looking bighorn with an enviable set of horns.

This popular fund-raising program started with the horned lizard plate, first offered in 2000.

It’s been quite amazing to watch the program grow. We now have nine plates and within this period of time we’ve raised nearly 9 million dollars.

Each conservation license plate costs just $30 in addition to the vehicle registration fee. $22 goes directly to help fund conservation efforts in Texas. Motorists can order a plate anytime for their vehicle, motorcycle or trailer; it’s not necessary to wait for a renewal notice. Go to any county tax office or conservationplate.org for your plates.

If you have a deer plate already or one of our other plates, I’m sure that there’s another vehicle around that could use a handsome looking desert bighorn sheep on it.

Our show receives support from RAM Trucks: Built to Serve.

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