Blackland Prairie Chapter

  “Education, Restoration, Preservation”

Congratulations Class of 2019!

Summer Edition of Newsletter!


KERA’s Miguel Perez report on the BPTMN class of 2019.
“North Texas Ecology Course Creates
A Team Of Master Naturalists”

The mission of the Texas Master Naturalist program is:

To develop a corps of well-informed volunteers to provide education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities for the State of Texas.

The Texas Master Naturalist program is a partnership between the Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Texas Parks & Wildlife, and other local partners.

To receive information from the TPWD Listserv sign up here: TPWD Listserv

Chapter Meetings

2nd Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m.
Heard Museum Science Center in McKinney
(Links to Directions & Map for the Heard Museum below)

The Heard Natural Science Museum
Science Resource Center Building (SRC)
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX 75069
Directions to Museum

Directions from the Heard Entrance to the Science Resource Center (SRC):
Stay on the drive, go past the main parking area, museum building and maintenance area, continue to follow the curve, once on top of the hill, there are multiple areas to park in the circle drive or to the right. The SRC Bldg is on the North Side of these parking areas.
Click to view the Heard Museum Guide Map to locate the  “SRC Bldg”
(The SRC Bldg is in the middle of pg 1 and top of pg 2 of the Heard Museum Guide)

2019 Monthly Meeting Topics

August 13: “Deep Dive Class – How to Identify Commonly Confusing Trees” – Lisa Travis
Prior to the regularly scheduled August 13 meeting, from 6:30pm-7pm, Lisa Travis (Nature educator and fellow BPTMN member) will conduct a class on how to differentiate and identify some of the most commonly confused trees in North Texas (examples: American Elm vs. Slippery Elm, Shumard Oak vs. Texas Red Oak, White Ash vs. Green Ash, Boxelder vs. Poison Ivy, Pecan vs. Black Walnut). Lisa will provide samples to study as well as an identification guide for future reference. This class will be in the SRC building, and attendees will earn an additional 30 min AT.

August 13: “Texas Nature Trackers: Discovering Populations & Documenting Change for Conservation” – Dr. Tania Homayoun 
Dr. Tania Homayoun is a Texas Nature Tracker Biologist with Texas Parks and Wildlife.  Through Texas Nature Trackers, she engages Naturalists of all interests and ability levels in collecting citizen science and crowd-sourced data on Texas’ unique flora and fauna with a particular focus on species of greatest conservation need.  Tania holds bachelors degrees in Ecology/Evolution/Conservation Biology and Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin and a Ph.D. in Conservation Biology from the University of Minnesota, where she studied the impacts of urbanization on land Bird communities.

September 10: “The Importance of Fungi in Ecosystems and Some Common Mushrooms in North Central Texas” – Denis Benjamin
Denis Benjamin grew up in South Africa and trained as a physician in Johannesburg. He emigrated to the United States in 1970 to complete his residency in pathology at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. He practiced pediatric pathology at Children’s Hospital in Seattle and Fort Worth. Denis was a Professor in both the Departments of Anatomic Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Washington. He is currently a Research Associate at the Botanic Research Institute of Texas in Fort Worth. In addition to nearly 100 professional publications, Denis has contributed to the lay literature and mushroom magazines and is a community Op/Ed writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Denis authored the landmark book on the health effects of mushrooms (Mushrooms: Poisons and Panaceas) and has published a collection of mushroom foraging essays (Musings of a Mushroom Hunter: A Natural History of Foraging). He is also a watercolorist focusing on fungi and botanical art.

Past Topics

2019 –
July 9: Matt White
“Prairies and Milkweeds”
June 11: Jacob Eickstead
“Management of Roadside Vegetation and Wildflowers”
May 14: Sam Kieschnick
“How iNaturalist Influences Land Management and Guides Public Policy”
 April 9: Sally Evans
“Making an Impression: Tales and Tips from 50 Years Teaching about Nature”
 March 12: Carl Franklin
“Researching the Alligator Snapping Turtles in the Trinity River”
 February 12: Bob Mione
“Habitat Restoration of Large & Small Plots and Unintended Consequences”
 January 8:
Blackland Prairie Chapter Open House and 2019 Kickoff for Members