Archive for June, 2011

No Flow With Which to Go

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

This is Passport to Texas

11—Anyone who recalls the aerial photographs of the Rio Grande not reaching the gulf of Mexico several years ago, should take that as a wake-up call.

Andrew Sansom, Director of the River Systems Institute at Texas State University in San Marcos, contributes the article Keeping Rivers Flowing, in Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine’s tenth anniversary water issue, on newsstands now.

17—People tend to believe everything’s okay as long as the water comes out when they turn on the tap. So, by bringing people’s attention to the issues presented to us from the aquifers to the estuaries, we do a great service.

Sansom suggests that unless we change how we think about and use water, we could—in our lifetimes —unintentionally “dewater” some of the state’s most iconic and biologically diverse rivers.

16—Everything is connected. People don’t often grasp the reality that when we approve hundreds of new wells in the hill country we potentially adversely affect the estuaries on the rim of the Gulf of Mexico.

It is with the utmost urgency that we begin to think beyond our own faucets, says Sansom, and understand that up steam and downstream—the headwaters and the tidewaters—are all part of the same cycle…or flow…of life.

The Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program funds our series…and supports conservation of Texas’ natural resources.

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

Water: We Must Act Now

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

This is Passport to Texas

A lot can change in 10 years, but one constant is Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine’s annual water issue. Dr. Larry McKinney, Director of the Harte Research Institute, and former Director of Aquatic Resources at Parks and Wildlife, has been involved from the beginning.

14—When we wrote the first article in that series, we were in the middle of just trying to get the Texas Legislature to come up with a method for including environmental issues—and all the other concerns—for evaluating water needs in the state of Texas.

Dr. McKinney says although we’ve made progress since that first issue, we’ve further to go to solve the problem.

17—I think now, more and more people understand that we have to have water for the environment; I hear that from our political leaders. I see a commitment in our legislature to move in the right direction. So, it’s all positive. The question is: can we move quickly enough to make sure that we hit that balance before we get into a situation where the options are very, very limited.

How much time does Texas have to achieve a balance between human and environmental water needs?

14—We have to solve this within the next ten years, because by then the population will have reached such a level that our options to balance the environmental water needs with industry and agriculture and municipalities will be frankly gone. We will not have another chance.

Go to for more information.

The Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program funds our series…and supports conservation of Texas’ natural resources.

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

Tenth Anniversary Water Issue

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

This is Passport to Texas

For the past ten years, Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine has dedicated its July issue to questions of water in Texas.

07—Big questions that we have to grapple with as a state: where’s our water going to come from, and who’s going to get it and how much are they going to get?

In the 10th anniversary publication, Texas parks and Wildlife Executive Director Carter Smith provides an overview of the past decade, including the progress we’ve made.

13—We’ve made a lot of headway. I think one of the most important things that we have done is to help elevate public awareness and consciousness about the criticality of conserving that water—not only now—but in future generations when we’re going to need it the most.

This includes ensuring plentiful water for the state’s fish and wildlife now and into the future.

19—Texans care about their fish and wildlife. Every single attitudinal survey demonstrates that. Also, there have been some legislative developments over the last 10 years that have helped put science and stakeholder processes together to help ensure that we’re going to have strategies for water that will be available for our fish and wildlife.

Learn more when you pick up the July issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine—on newsstands now.

The Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program supports our series…and funds conservation projects in Texas.

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

Texas the State of Water

Monday, June 20th, 2011

This is Passport to Texas

Ten years ago, the July issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine focused on water—and continues to do so each July. Editor Louie Bond describes a few of the stories in the upcoming10th anniversary edition water issue.

64—This year, on our tenth anniversary of that first water issue, we’ve added forty pages, and brought on some of the top experts and best writers and photographers in the state to take a look at how far we’ve come in the past ten years, and where we’ll be heading after that. After a great introduction by Carter Smith—our fearless leader—we move on to a look at the gulf from Larry McKinney, a former head of our coastal fisheries division. We don’t focus so much on the oil spill in this particular issue. But we look at what the gulf means to us, and in the future there. And then we look, with our own wonderful Larry Hodge, at lakes. Particularly at the use of lakes as reservoirs and our future water needs. Then we move onto bays with Carol Flake Chapman, in particular a look at Matagorda Bay; we move I onto springs with Joe Nick Patoski. We also take a look at wetlands with Wendy Holtcamp, who looks at these great nurseries as well as barriers to protect us against coastal storms. Finally, we have a photo essay featuring water in our great state parks. So, we hope you’ll come with us this July to take a look at water in Texas in all its shapes and forms.

Thanks, Louie.

That’s our show… For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

State Park Swimming Holes

Friday, June 17th, 2011

This is Passport to Texas

Nothing can cool off the whole family on a hot summer’s day faster than a dip in the cool waters of a state park swimming pool.

Our State park guide, Bryan Frazier tells us about a couple of well loved pools in Central Texas.

45—We have some great parks with fantastic swimming pool facilities; sometimes the only pool facility in the entire county. And so in Central Texas we have LBJ SP that has a great swimming pool facility there.

And then, too, Bastrop and Lockhart were built by the CCC. And they’re just beautiful and clean. Bastrop SP has got some new renovations with new restrooms, with a new pool liner. So that experience is even better. Now, they all have summer hours, and you can find those out on our website You can find season passes at these pools, and at Bastrop SP they even have swimming lessons that are available. So, that’s one more option to make a State Park destination a great getaway.

Thanks, Bryan.

That’s our show for today…with funding provided by Chevrolet…building dependable, reliable trucks for more than 90 years.

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