Types of Volunteer Service Projects

Chapter Volunteer Service Projects 

Weekend Walks @Seabourne Creek Nature Park

Guided Tours Every 4th Saturday of the Month @ 10:00 am 12:00 pm

With a 20 year vision of Native Prairie Restoration, come experience a small part of the Texas Coastal Prairie which once covered 6.5 million acres of this Coastal Region.  Seabourne Creek Nature Park provides 7 restored environments which provide habitats for native Texas flora and fauna.  Come and see our Butterfly Garden, Seabourne Lake, Wetlands Area, Prairie Demo Garden, Wetlands Demo Garden, Prairie Restoration Area, and Woodlands Bird Sanctuary.

Volunteers are needed at 9:30am to Guide/Interpret walks, as well as, volunteers to Host an Information Booth at the Entrance/Parking Lot to SCNP.


Brazos Bend State Park

Sponsor:  Texas Parks and Wildlife Department – Brazos Bend State Park

Description:  Brazos Bend State Park has 35 miles of trails and 5,000 acres of protected land, including fragments of intact coastal prairie, and is one of our chapter’s main partners.    link to BBSP http://www.brazosbend.org

Volunteering at the park includes —

— trail interpretation and patrol
— nature center staffing and leading guided hikes
— educational outreach (Eco-Explorers, Pond Life Presentation)
— trail maintenance (brush control, tallow whacking, fire ant treatments, etc.)
— summer season water delivery to dry points in the park, and wood yard work

Dove Banding with Texas Parks and Wildlife (May – July)

Adult White-wing

Adult White-winged Dove

Sponsor: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Description:   The TPWD is conducting a multi-year study of white-winged doves as part of an effort to track their territoral expansion and movements.  Adult White-winged DoveWhite-winged doves are banded in all counties in Texas. In 2009 Coastal Prairie Master Naturalists learned the how-tos of banding these birds by assisting TPWD staff. In 2010 CPC Master Naturalists conducted the banding project in Fort Bend County with the assistance of TPWD staff. In 2011expanded our banding project into Waller County: we banded over 150 doves in both counties. In 2012 we once again helped TPWD with this project.
Banding takes place on master naturalists property and/or other properties, with master naturalist help. If you have doves coming in to your feeders regularly, please contact Susie Doe if you would like to join the project.   Baiting begins in May, with capture, banding and release beginning in late May and continuing through July. .

 Seed Grow-Out for KPC, Project Blazingstar and CPCTMN

Sponsor: Katy Prairie Conservancy, Coastal Prairie Partnership, and Coastal Prairie Chapter of the TX Master Naturalists
Description: CPC members are helping The Katy Prairie Conservancy, the Coastal Prairie Partnership and our chapter by participating in a program whereby persons interested in the restoration of local prairies volunteer to grow out native grasses and forbs from seed.

Grow-Outs by WP

Growing Native Plants, photo by Wayne Poorman

These seeds are collected during the summer and fall months, and then distributed to volunteers in January and February.   Volunteers sow their seeds and grow them out to the 1-gallon pot stage.    Then the plants are transplanted to various prairie restoration areas in our area — Hermann Park pocket prairies, Katy Prairie Conservancy properties, and Seabourne Creek Park prairie restoration area.

You don’t have to be a CPC member to help in this effort.  If you are interested, please visit http://www.coastalprairiepartnership.orgfor information on how you can help.


Katy Prairie Conservancy (KPC) 

–Educational Outreach

Sponsor: Katy Prairie Conservancy
Description:    CPC Master Naturalist members volunteer to lead hikes and nature tours (Discovery Tours) on the various KPC preserves, after being trained by KPC staff.   We also volunteer at special KPC events such as Summer Science Nights and Winter Wings Camp for Kids, Flat Out Prairie Fun Day in November, and school field trip days.
  For more infomation go to: http://www.katyprairie.org

–Native Plant Nursery (PrairieWorks)

Sponsor:  Katy Prairie Conservancy
Description:  The KPC Field Office is the home of a Native Seed Nursery, Demonstration Garden & Rescue Gardens.  It is being developed as a source of seeds and plants for prairie restoration.   Volunteer activities include seed collection, invasive plant destruction or removal, seed/plant propagation, nursery and garden maintenance, and creating seed balls.     Work is also done at the Williams Prairie Preserve, a KPC property in Fort Bend County, t0 contain invasive species that must be kept in check. For more infomration go to: http://www.katyprairie.org

Texas Stream Team

Sponsor: Texas State University, TCEQ and EPA
Description:   Texas Stream Team is a network of trained volunteers and supportive partners working together to gather information about the natural resources of Texas and to ensure that information is available to all Texans. Statewide, there are over 1,400 Texas Stream Team volunteers collect water quality data on rivers, streams, wetlands, bays, bayous, and estuaries across Texas. Several CPC members are among those taking data locally.
For more information go to:http://txstreamteam.meadowscenter.txstate.edu/

The Texas Hummingbird Roundup

Sponsor: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Status: Active, Annual, March through October
Location: Your Own Backyard! 

Hummingbird Nest

Hummingbird Nest, by Greg Lavaty

Description:    The Texas Hummingbird Roundup gives you the opportunity to join other Texans in helping our wildlife biologists learn more about Texas Hummingbirds and what they need in their environment.   With 18 species of hummingbirds known from the state and another seven species thought to be reasonably close to the state so that they could potentially become a part of our avifauna, the challenge to know these species and what they need to survive is daunting.   Since some of these birds have been recorded only a dozen times throughout history, their story in Texas is minimal. You can help.   Biologists cannot be in every county in the state at all times to observe these birds and their movements.  Volunteers can provide information that can be pooled with other observations across the state to develop a picture of these birds and their habitats.    The survey is simple, to the point and provides biologists with the information needed to create meaningful data from your hummingbird observations.

To get started, either download the survey forms or order a hummingbird survey kit. The link to the website is: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/huntwild/wild/wildlife_diversity/texas_nature_trackers/hummingbird_roundup/

The Great Backyard Bird Count

Sponsor: Audubon Society & Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Status: Annual
Next GBBC: Feb. 14-17, 2014
Location: Your Own Backyard!
Description: The Great Backyard Bird Count is an annual four-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are across the continent. Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts.    It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count each day of the event. It’s free, fun, and easy – and it helps the birds. For more information, and instructions on how to participate, visit http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc/howto.html
       Coastal Prairie Master Naturalists join in the fun each year and engage in a little friendly competition amongst chapter members to see who lists the most species and who tallies the most individual birds.         

Annual Christmas Bird Count at Brazos Bend State Park

Little Blue at BBSP by S DoeSponsor: Audubon Society & Brazos Bend State Park
Description:  Each year Coastal Prairie Texas Master Naturalist members participate in the Brazos Bend Christmas Bird Count.    Birders fan out over a designated 15-mile radius circle centered around Brazos Bend State Park to identify and count all birds seen during the day.   The first BBSP Christmas Bird Count was conducted in 1985 with 130 species tallied;  in 2009 the total number of species counted was 151.  The record species count is 152.

Results of the count are sent in to National Audubon Society;   in 2009 there were over 2150 such counts conducted in North and South America with 80% of those being in the United States.   Audubon and other organizations use data collected in this longest-running wildlife census to assess the health of bird populations – and to help guide conservation action.    For more info on Audubon’s Christmas Bird Counts, please visit  http://birds.audubon.org/christmas-bird-count.

 Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land
Sponsor: Houston Museum of Natural Science
13016 University Blvd. at corner of University Blvd. and New Territory Blvd
Description:    CPC Master Naturalist volunteers work with the Houston Museum of Natural Science’s Sugar Land Volunteer Guild to staff docent programs, assist the museum staff behind the scenes, participate in special events, and do off-site volunteering at the George Observatory or at other Ft. Bend or Waller County locations.

Fort Bend County Recycling Center

Sponsor: Fort Bend County Recycle/Environmental Center
Description:     The Fort Bend County Recycle/Environmental Center located at 1200 Blume Road in Rosenberg, TX is open to accept recyclable materials on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday (8am – 4pm).
(Hazardous materials can be brought in on Mondays and the first Saturday of each month.)

Every Monday and on the first Saturday of every month, CPC volunteers help to sort and package of acceptable materials brought to Center.

The website for the recycling center is http://www.fortbendcountytx.gov/index.aspx?page=358

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