Our Wild Texas – March 2018

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Black Triangles

Frog Choir With a Toad Chorus

green tree frog video link

You've no doubt heard frogs and toads singing in an attempt to improve their love life. If you've wondered just who's making those ribbits and chirps, try matching the song to a face in our gallery. Or learn some frog calls with our videos and try to engage them in call and response.

You can help us keep track of these important animals, which are called herps by biologists. Just join iNaturalist (it's free) and use it to post sightings, especially of target species, on Texas Nature Trackers

If you enjoy treefrogs and they are found near your home, try attracting some to your yard. You can build a little hangout for them using our how-to video. For help identifying treefrogs and other herps, check out our resources, which include a CD of 41 Texas frog and toad calls. 

Join Us in the Wild

graphic of animals in a city video link

City Nature Challenge is a wildlife sighting competition that takes place worldwide April 27-30. The objective is to document the most varieties of wildlife. It's easy to participate by using the free iNaturalist app to take pictures of animals and plants. Join up, you may just be the keen observer your city needs to win.

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Great Texas Birding Classic 2018

Join us for a little healthy competition at the 22nd annual Great Texas Birding Classic. It's a fun way to spend time outside with colleagues, friends or family. There are a variety of options for teams, so put one together and register by April 1. Proceeds go toward Texas conservation projects. See you out there!

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horned lizard license plate to benefit wildlife, link

Let Dead Wood Live

wren on dead wood, video link

If you have a standing dead tree (called a snag) on your property, and its trunk or limbs don't pose a falling hazard, leave it standing as a benefit to wildlife. Or if it has to come down, let it stay on the ground as a log. Snags and logs are an easy way to provide wildlife with food, a place to rest, rear young and hide from predators. This is why you see so many on nature preserves. 

Ranch owner Greg Grant describes in this video how he creates snags in order to encourage wildlife, especially woodpeckers, which typically excavate new holes each time they nest. Woodpecker cavities are in turn reused by many other animals

Most folks think that once a tree has died, it has no use and should be removed. Nothing could be further from the truth. Read this magazine article for pro tips on ways to safely keep dead wood on your property. 

Spring = Wildflowers

tiger swallowtail on white mountain laurel, video link

Each spring, trees bloom and wildflowers spread across our landscape like a crazy quilt. They're every variety of gorgeous and act as a backdrop for the antics of butterflies, solitary bees and other pollinators  – as in the photo above of an Eastern tiger swallowtail on a white Texas mountain laurel.  

If you want to hit the wildflower road, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and Texas Highways have put together some good drives. Don't forget your camera, and tag your photos with the hashtag #txwildflowers2018. A list of common wildflowers will help you to ID your favorites. 

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