Archive for October, 2015

Being Safe in the Company of Alligators

Friday, October 30th, 2015
American Alligator

American Alligator

This is Passport to Texas

The American Alligator may be one of the most fearsome creatures roaming Texas. We find them in slow-moving rivers, ponds, lakes and swamps–and even in our neighborhoods, which prompts calls to Texas Parks and Wildlife saying:

02- I’ve got an alligator here; what do I need to do.

Steve Lightfoot, Texas Parks and Wildlife spokesperson, says the first thing we need to do is to be realistic.

06-It’s alligator country, and we’re going to have more confrontations if we encroach on their space.

Chance encounters increase as we encroach on alligator habitat with residential and commercial developments. Steve Lightfoot says if you see a gator, leave it alone; it will move on. However, if one does become a nuisance…

23- If one’s acting aggressively, if its making threatening moves towards you–back away slowly. We’ve got a lot of tips on our website that tell people common things to do when you’re in confrontation with an alligator. Call our game wardens. We’ve got game wardens in every county–they’re used to dealing with these kinds of things. They’ll come out and assess the situation. If an alligator needs to be relocated–they’ll take care of it.

Find tips for peaceful coexistence with the American alligator on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…Cecilia Nasti

Legacy of a Lifetime License

Thursday, October 29th, 2015
Hunting and fishing forever!

Hunting and fishing forever!

This is Passport to Texas

Hunting and fishing are deeply rooted traditions for Gabe Kulhanek of El Campo.

04-It’s just as stress relief to go hunting and fishing and get away from everything.

The outdoors has been a lifelong pursuit for him, and something he shared early on with his son.

11-He started hunting when he was probably four and a half years old. He shot his first deer at five years old with his own rifle. I never shot anything for him. He’s always killed his own deer whenever he hunted.

This past June Texas Parks and Wildlife drew Gabe’s name as the winner of a Lifetime Super Combo License, giving him the right to hunt and fish in Texas without ever having to buy another state license. Instead of keeping, it, he transferred it to his son, Joshua, as his legacy.

05-It would benefit him more than anything, and it’s something he can have and cherish the rest of his life.

Entries for the Lifetime License Drawing are five dollars each and available online or at retailers. Enter as many times as you like; fees go toward conservation in Texas. The next drawing is December 27, 2015.

04-It’s a good opportunity. I never dreamed I would win it — it was the first time I entered.

Is luck on your side? Find more information on the Lifetime License Drawing on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series.

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

Lifetime Licenses

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015
Lifetime License Drawing

Lifetime License Drawing

This is Passport to Texas

Tim Brockway is an avid fisherman.

02-I fish about four days a week.

This competitive bass angler from Kaufman says he used to always buy an annual super combo license for hunting and fishing.

02-Because I think the money goes to a good cause.

The cause is conservation and habitat management in Texas. But, in 2010, Tim — a retired firefighter — spent five dollars online to enter Texas Parks and Wildlife’s twice-a-year Lifetime License drawing–and won.

25-I told the guys up at the fire station: Hey, I bought a five dollar chance to win a lifetime license. And I get a call a few months later — and I would have bet anything one of the guys got their wives to call and mess with me — and I actually didn’t believe them. I got off the phone and I called our local game
warden that I know real well. He said: ‘Give me the phone number they called you from and the person’s name and I’ll check on it.’ Whenever I gave him the phone number and name, he said: ‘Congratulations; I know the person and I know the number.’

Money from every five dollar entry goes toward conservation in Texas, which improves hunting, fishing and the outdoors for everyone.

09-I know your entries went up by about 30 right after I won mine from people at the fire station. I said: Come on guys; it’s five bucks. You spend that much on a hamburger. It’s well worth the chance.

The deadline for the next drawing is December 27, 2015. Entries are currently available online or at license retailers. For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Hunter Education for Safety in the Field

Tuesday, October 27th, 2015
Getting experience shooting.

Getting experience shooting.

This is Passport to Texas

If you’re a hunter, or considering becoming one, completion of a hunter education course is a must.

13-Overall, what a person learns in Hunter Education is the safe, knowledgeable, responsible habits that hunters and shooting sports participants would need to responsibly handle a firearm from the home to the field and back again.

Steve Hall oversees hunter education at Texas Parks and Wildlife.

39-The centerpiece for hunter education is the ten commandments of firearm safety. And those apply whether you’re handling them around the gun safe at home, how to store them properly, transport them properly. And then when you’re in the field, it’s called hunter safety. For a reason. There’s other kinds of things that come into play when you’re in the field like where the other hunters are at, what kind of shooting you’re doing; do you know beyond the line of fire of a
shot? Is it on a hillside that you’re shooting and you don’t know what’s ion the other side? So there are lots of things that come into play. And then they all kind of center around knowing your firearm, knowing how to handle it safely, but also knowing the capability of those firearms as well.

Hunter education classes take place year round across the state. Find hunter education classes near you, or take it online, when you log onto the TPW website.

The Wildlife and sport fish restoration program supports our series.

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

TPW Magazine: Hunting for Blue Topaz

Monday, October 26th, 2015
Sheryl Smith-Rodgers topaz hunting.

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers topaz hunting. Photo courtesy

This is Passport to Texas

How about going hunting on your next long weekend–hunting for Texas blue topaz, that is.

05- Mason County is the only place where this particular gem is found.

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers,, wrote about Texas Blue Topaz in the October issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine.

22-Texas blue topaz is our state gem. It was designated as that in 1969; and I guess I’d read about it through the years. And just decided that it would be cool to experience topaz hunting. There are three ranches there in the county that charge a daily fee. But you can go in and hunt for it.

She set out one weekend to explore the town of Mason, and to hunt for the state gem. She thought she’d find one.

04-I was determined to, but never happened.

Texas Blue Topaz may have eluded her, but Smith-Rodgers says small town hospitality did not.

19-People are so nice in Mason County; they have a lot of nice restaurant and you still get the feel of a small town. We stayed at a B&B right on the square, across from the courthouse. We went to see a movie–they have an old time movie theater. It’s a great place just to get away for the weekend.

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers’ article on hunting for Texas blue topaz is in the October issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine.

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

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