Los Caminos – Newsletter / Blog

Our member nature stories and contributions were published in Quarterly Newsletters from 2008 until December 2018, and are all included below.  We recently started a Chapter Blog, called “Nature Along the El Camino Real Trail“, edited and managed by Sue Ann Kendall. Take a look, it’s really GREAT”. This new blog is taking over from the Newsletters the mission of sharing member nature stories and lots of great information from our Chapter Members and others.

View or download our quarterly Award Winning Newsletters.  They received the “Best Newsletter” Award as voted on by attendees at the State Conferences held in 2009,  2010, and 2012  – three out of the six years that we submitted an entry, and read fascinating contributions from members, professors, and various experts in nature.  Great photos too!  We also did a series called “Getting to Know You” that profiled our fellow nature loving members, and perhaps a few other contributors to our chapter’s mission.  An interview template for anyone to use can be downloaded here: Getting to Know You interview template.

Each year we printed all that year’s quarterly publications in a high quality bound booklet: for members personal libraries and giving as gifts to family and friends to show them all the fun we have; for distribution to various public and school libraries; and as gifts to outside speakers and other officials.

Here’s the newsletters…

Winter 2018 Newsletter PDF – 12 pages

  • “Texas Master Naturalists Statewide Curriculum”, by Michelle Haggerty and Mary Pearl Meuth, highlights the amazing new curriculum book.
  • Upcoming Events
  • “Recovering America’s Wildlife Act Would Bring $63 Million Per Year to Texas”, by Mike Mitchell, Assistant Commander Game Warden, TPWD
  • “Welcome Class of 2018”, by Dorothy Mayer, outlines the content of this year’s class
  • “Getting to Know You”, has autobiographies of each of our 11 new class members.
  • “Sweet Shenanigans: The long Journey” by Sheri Sweet tells the amazing story of a hitchhiker Gray Tree Frog that hitch hiked 370 miles in their RV.
  • “Who’s Afraid?”, by Debbi Harris shares her experience with a momma Wolf Spider loaded with baby spiderlings.
  • “Life Before and After Becoming a Texas Master Naturalist”, by Lisa Milewski shares how her view of many of life’s normal events has evolved.
  • “Membership Certifications, Milestones & Hours”, by Lisa Milewski is our latest update covering all of 2017 and 2018 to date.
  • “Chapter Contacts and Resources”, by Carol Williams has our mission, officers and committee members, and contact information.

Download the Winter 2018 Newsletter PDF for viewing or printing.

[Web master note: We had a brief gap in our quarterly newsletters, missing Summer and Fall 2017 due to our original Editor Don Travis retiring from these after almost 10 years, and our new Editor, Carol Williams, used a fresh new format with still great contributions from our members, and created the above Winter 2018 issue, which for now is our last issue of the Los Caminos newsletter. Visit and contribute to our new and exciting new Blog.]

Spring 2017 Newsletter PDF – 10 pages

  • “Texas Thistle” – a native plant valuable to pollinators and birds, by Nancy Webber
  • “Nature is Unbelievable” – by Donna Lewis sharing two sightings on her property, ‘Fermented fruit – nectar of the gods?’ and ‘What is that lizard?’
  • “Sweet Shenanigans” – by Sheri Sweet sharing her discovery of a green tree frog, and all about that little amphibian.
  • “Field Work on Rain Water System Installation” – by Kathy Hitt and Henry Luna describes their discoveries of numerous wildflowers while working on installation of a Rain Water Harvesting System.
  • “Transition to a No-Mow Lawn” – by Linda Jo Conn relates an interesting story of her 30+ years history of mow vs no-mow and the effect on wildflowers.  As you may have guessed, it’s now no-mow forever.
  • “Earth Day 2017” – by Don Travis relates some history of this now worldwide event, and what happened locally.
  • “Maxine and others on Earth Day” – Our favorite cartoon character and others on this event.
  • “Aldo Says” – another great quote from Aldo Leopold.
  • “Certifications, Etc.” – by Debbi Harris updates us latest recognition and award levels.
  • “Did You Know?” – by Don Travis another trivia tidbit about nature: “What animal sleeps with millions of friends?”

Download the Spring 2017 newsletter for printing or viewing.

Winter 2017 Newsletter PDF – 12 pages

  • “Remembering Katherine” – a tribute to our long term friend and fellow Master Naturalist, Katherine Bedrich, who passed away in November 2016.
  • “Getting to Know You” – Our interview with Karin Patzke, Katherine’s niece.
  • “The Influx of the Asian Lady Beetle – by Dorothy Mayer. Learn about this non-native little bugger and how to differentiate from our native Ladybugs.
  • “Bentley and His Friends” – by Donna Lewis, telling a story about her dogs encounter with baby Mantids or Praying Mantis.
  • “Sweet Shenanigans” – by Sheri Sweet, and their discovery of a Great Egret in their back pond.
  • “Birds Disappearing Quiz” – by Pat Holley, who has some questions for you and a good background story on why they seem to disappear at various times of the year.
  • “Aldo Says” is our regular feature quote from Aldo Leopold.
  • “Certifications Etc.” – by Debbi Harris on our latest awards and recognitions.
  • “Did You Know?” – by Don Travis asks “What mammal does a handstand as part of its defense?”

Download the  Winter 2017 newsletter for printing or viewing.

Fall 2016 Newsletter PDF – 9 pages

  • “Sweet Shenigans”, by Sheri Sweet sharing her up close encounter with a friendly squirrel.
  • “Sweet Shenigans part 2”, by Sheri Sweet, more observations and encounters – never a dull moment.
  • “Road Runner Journal Entry”, by Cindy Bolch and the games this bird plays!
  • “The Fall Sky”, by Don and Lynn Hagan on supermoons, meteor showers and the Andromeda Galaxy.
  • “Plant ID and Taxonomy at TAMU”, by Linda Jo Conn, learning about taxonomy keys.
  • “Bog Trotting with Dale and Monique”, by Linda Jo Conn on their slogging through an old peat bog grabbing treasures to document, press and preserve for the herbarium.
  • “I feel guilty for possessing ‘weeds'”, by Linda Jo Conn – confessions of a weed-a-holic.
  • “Aldo Leopold Says”, by Don Travis with another quote.
  • “Certifications, etc.” by Cindy Bolch with the latest on awards and milestones.
  • “Did You Know?”, by Don Travis – What insect has teeth, flies backwards and sees almost 360 degrees?

Download the Fall-2016-newsletter for printing or viewing.

Summer 2016 Newsletter PDF – 13 pages

  • “Sweet Shenanigans”, by Sheri Sweet on finding Bobwhites on their land.
  • “Sweet Shenanigans part 2”, discovering Dragonflies at the International Water Lily Gardens in San Angelo.
  • “Monitoring Dragonfly Migrations” by Cindy Travis explains the mission of the Migratory Dragonfly Partnership and how citizen scientists (that’s you folks) can help.
  • “More Birds in the Bush” by Barbara Cromwell describes wildlife habitat management practices we can all do at home.
  • “Interesting Things in the Spring Night Sky” by Lynn and Don Hagan describes interesting aspects of the Big Dipper and Ursa Major constellation.
  • A cartoon feature on astronomers by Don Travis.
  • “Aldo Leopold Says”, by Don Travis with another good quote of his.
  • “Getting to Know You”, by Don Travis, is the first of our member interviews, this one featuring our regular contributor Sheri Sweet.
  • “It’s Summer Meteor Time” by Don and Lynn Hagan prepares us to enjoy the Delta Aquarid and Perseid meteor showers coming our way starting about now into August.
  • “Milano Junction Memorial Garden” by Debbi Harris gives us an update on this neat project of ours.
  • “KBTX WeatherEDGE Visits the Hagan Ranch”, by Don and Lynn Hagan, explains the technology and people behind this amazing weather vehicle.
  • “Certifications, etc.” by Cindy Bolch updates our member achievement levels.
  • “Did You Know”, by Don Travis – What animal has stars on its nose?

Download the Summer 2016 newsletter for printing or viewing.

Spring 2016 Newsletter PDF – 9 pages

  • “Sweet Shenanigans”, by Sheri Sweet on “How to foil a Cardinal”
  • “Sweet Shenanigans part 2”, about her Schnauzer and a Bullfrog.
  • “Floridus milamexa on the El Camino Real Trail”, a chapter event by Joyce Conner.
  • “Class of 2016 Graduation”, by Dorothy Mayer
  • “Community Volunteering” tells about the community garden project in Hutto, by Lisa Milewski
  • “Maxine on Nature”, a few of Maxine’s great cartoons.
  • “Free Nature Photos”, and where to find them by Don Travis
  • “Aldo Says”, another quote from Aldo Leopold
  • “Certifications, etc.” updates our members award levels, by Cindy Bolch
  • “Did You Know” asks and answers the question “What animal can change sex from male to female?”

Download the Spring 2016 newsletter for printing or viewing.

Winter 2016 Newsletter PDF – 8 pages

  • “Sweet Shenanigans”, by Sheri Sweet telling about her Eurasian Collared Dove babies nesting outside in her yard, and the antics of their parents.
  • “Sweet Shenanigans II”, by Sheri describing her experience spotting a Pileated Woodpecker on a telephone pole while driving with husband Wes and almost giving him a heart attack.
  • “Cryptogamic Botany Quiz”, by Dale Kruse (S. M. Tracy Herbarium). See if you can identify the lichen, moss, and liverworts from 6 photos, and learn about their characteristics.
  • “Controlled Burn-Native Prairie Flora”, by Katherine Bedrich walks you through her recent experience assisting in a controlled burn.
  • “Birding-Looking for Winter Birds”, also by Katherine shares a group experience in birding in the county side.
  • “Aldo Says” shares another quote of his.
  • “Cataclysmic Events” by Don Travis reviews the causes and after effects of the five mass extinction events that our earth has experienced over the past 450 million years, and asks the question whether we are now heading for a sixth event, based on human actions.
  • “Certifications, Etc.” by Cindy Bolch is the update on our members achievements.
  • “Did You Know?” asks and answers the question “What male animal attracts females with its nose”.

Download the Winter 2016 newsletter for printing or viewing.

Fall 2015 Newsletter PDF – 8 pages

  • “What’s the BUZZ?”, by President Barbara Cromwell, about the fun and excitement of fireflies, and how they do the magic glow.
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans”, this one about those amazing spider webs, by Sheri Sweet.
  • “Does Tropical Milkweed KILL Monarchs?”, dispels some myths and tells why it is good if managed properly, by Debbie Harris
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans part II”, tells all about the beautiful Rain Lilies on her property.
  • “TMN 2015 State Conference Awards” highlights three members recognized for their service milestones, and the chapter winning the popular vote contest for Chapter Brochures.
  • “New 2016 Member Training Class”, explains the topics and schedule for our January class.
  • “Nature’s Funny Side”, offers a little humor.
  • “Aldo Says” is another quote from the famous naturalist Aldo Leopold.
  • “Certifications Etc.” updates us on our members and chapter accomplishments.
  • “Did You Know?” asks and answers the question “What insect has a grandfather but not a father?”

Download the Fall 2015 newsletter for printing or viewing.

Summer 2015 Newsletter PDF – 11 pages

  • “What’s the BUZZ?”, by President Barbara Cromwell, on our upcoming new member class in January 2016.
  • “Animal Group Name Quiz”, by Don Travis tests your knowledge on things like a “colony of bats” or a “mustering of storks”.
  • “Getting to Know You”, an interview with Professor Bob Baldridge from Baylor University, by Dorothy Mayer.
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans”, shares encounters with a Painted Bunting, and some Sandhill Cranes, by Sheri Sweet.
  • “Fireflies”, an recent encounter brings back childhood memories, by Donna Lewis.
  • “Lucy’s Wonderings” on how did that frog get in that birdhouse, by Lucy Coward.
  • “Fun With Nature”, by Don Travis shares a couple more cartoons on the subject.
  • “Janice’s Snake Skin” tells of finding a VERY long snake skin, by Janice Johnson.
  • “On Natural Selection”, some more humor on this topic, by Don Travis.
  • “Certifications, Etc.” updates our members recent accomplishments, by Cindy Bolch.
  • “Did You Know?” asks the question: “What is the largest venomous snake?” By Don Travis.

Download the Summer 2015 Newsletter for printing or viewing.

Spring 2015 Newsletter PDF – 12 pages

  • “What’s the BUZZ?”, by President Barbara Cromwell, about the situation of water in Texas.
  • “What’s in the Water?”, by John Pruett, on past and present blunders by man that threaten this resource.
  • “Prairie Tracks”, by Katherine Bedrich, all about frogs.
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans”, by Sheri Sweet, an encounter with a Killdeer’s antics and nest.
  • “Monarchs and Wildflowers”, by Debbie Harris, tells about a painting class using them as subjects.
  • “Lucy’s Wonderings”, by Lucy Coward, wondering about things in nature.
  • “Earth Day at the Library”, by Katherine Bedrich, show and tell with kids at Cameron Library.
  • “New Hours Reporting System”, by Don Travis, new “opportunities” for everyone.
  • “A New Plant is Discovered”, by Genie Lindberg, a rare discovery in Valentine Texas.
  • “On Natural Selection”, by Don Travis, another humorous tidbit on the subject.
  • “Aldo Leopold Says”, another quote from our favorite naturalist.
  • “Certifications, Etc.”, by Dorothy Mayer is an update on everyone’s awards and milestones.
  • “Did You Know?”, introduces another fascinating feat of nature – What is the largest land based arthropod?

Download the Spring 2015 newsletter PDF for printing or viewing.

Winter 2015 Newsletter PDF – 14 pages

  • “What’s the BUZZ?”, by President Barbara Cromwell, about our upcoming Wildlife Management Tax Valuation workshop on Feb 27, and about 2015 being the year of the Cicada.
  • “Deformed Bird Beaks”, by Genie Lindburg. Read about avain keratin disorder causing deformed bird beaks.
  • “Natives at the Big Lump”, by Genie Lindburg on replacing exotic and invasive plants with native alternatives.
  • “What’s in the Water” series by John Pruett continues with meandering rivers and healthy riparian zones.
  • “Meet Our New AgriLife Agent” Micah Holcombe, and her family.
  • “My Place in Nature” by Linda Jo Conn introduces us to iNaturalist and its value.
  • “Prairie Tracks” by Katherine Bedrich.  All about the white tailed deer.
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans” by Sheri Sweet is about Hooded Mergansers.
  • “Monarch Plight”, by Debbi Harris explains the issues surrounding new attempts to classify the Monarch Butterfly as an endangered species and what that might mean to everyone.
  • “On Natural Selection” by Don Travis is just some neat cartoons on the subject.
  • “Aldo Leopold Says” is another pertinent quote from the famous naturalist.
  • “Certifications Etc.” by Dorothy Mayer updates everyone on the latest achievements of our members.
  • “Did You Know?” another of our continuing series of interesting nature facts. Where is 85% of plant life found?

Download the Winter 2015 newsletter PDF for printing or viewing.

Fall 2014 Newsletter PDF – 12 pages

  • “Prairie Tracks”, by Katherine Bedrich, on the Virginia Opossum, including a great photo of mom with babies in her pouch.
  • “Because Every Drop Counts and Zeroes Count Too”, by Linda Jo Conn, about CoCoRaHS rainfall monitoring.
  • “What’s in the Water?”, by John Pruett, on riparian zones.
  • “My Place in Nature”, by Linda Jo Conn helping demystify the confusion about what “native plants” really means.
  • “Why do Birds Fly in a V?”, by Don Travis. There’s more to the story than just simple uplifts and looking pretty.
  • “Wildflowers of the Big Lump”, by Genie Lindburg on her trip to Kenya and similarity of invasive plants there and here.
  • “Doodlebug Hollow”, by Katherine Bedrich tells about history of 100 year old sad death of the last Passenger Pigeon.
  • “Baby Roadrunners”, by Cindy Bell writes and shares photos of finding a nest of new born Roadrunners.
  • “Aldo Leopold Says”, another quote from our favorite naturalist.
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans”, by Sheri Sweet. A follow up on her Black Headed Vulture babies, and a family of Texas Jackrabbits.
  • “Certifications, Etc”, by Dorothy Mayer with another update on certifications and milestones.
  • “Did You Know?”, by Don Travis. What’s the only insect that can turn its head 360 degrees?

Download the Fall 2014 newsletter, PDF for printing or viewing.

Summer 2014 Newsletter PDF – 10 pages

  • “Prairie Tracks”, by Katherine Bedrich, learn about the Eastern Cottontail
  • “What’s in the Water?”, by John Pruett, the gasper goo (freshwater drum)
  • “My Place in Nature”, by Linda Jo Conn, wildflowers, scarab beetle and more…
  • “Wildflowers of the Big Lump”, by Genie Lindburg, the beautiful Alophia drummondii
  • “Aldo Says”, a quote by Aldo Leopold
  • “Sweet’s Nature Shenanigans”, by Sheri Sweet, vultures born in the barn
  • “Summer Youth Education Program”, by Katherine Bedrich, nature programs at a day care
  • “The Nature of Milam County”, by Katherine Bedrich, observing our wildlife
  • “The Lexington Monarch Garden”, by Sheri Sweet, building a Monarch Waystation
  • “Certifications, etc.”, by Dorothy Mayer, our latest awards and recognitions
  • “Did You Know?”, by Don Travis, Will a Tarantula shatter and die if dropped?

Download the Summer 2014 Newsletter PDF for viewing and printing.

Spring 2014 Newsletter PDF – 10 pages

  • “Prairie Tracks”, by Katherine Bedrich, on observing, sensing and feeling nature
  • “Snake of the Day”, by Sue Taylor, snake antics in her back yard
  • “A Conversation between father and daughter”, by Sheri Sweet, do water bugs talk to each other?
  • “What’s in the Water?”, by John Pruett, about flathead or yellow cat catfish
  • “A Fish Tale”. by John Pruett, sometimes stupid pills ARE needed
  • “Armadillo Clanking”, by Sheri Sweet, on a unique encounter with our armored friend
  • “I Foretold the End”, by Linda Jo Conn, finding (and losing) that special roadside wildflower
  • “Getting Ready for Hummingbird Season”, by Linda Jo Conn, making nectar with her grandson
  • “What and How do Birds Smell”, by Don Travis, a biology lesson in how they find food and mates
  • “Floridus Milamexa”, by Katherine Bedrich, our new flora of Milam County project and native seed collection
  • “Nature Festival 2014”, by Don Travis, a brief wrapup of this years event.
  • “Certifications, Etc.” by Dorothy Mayer on our latest awards and recognition levels
  • “Did You Know?”, by Don Travis, do you know what shoots out a smelly boiling liquid as a defense mechanism?

Download the Spring 2014 newsletter PDF for viewing or printing here

Winter 2014 Newsletter PDF – 13 pages

  • “Prairie Tracks”, by Katherine Bedrich, tells about a controlled burn “Sacred Smoke”, and after the rain “Cleansing Rain”
  • Field Trip pictures, show scenes from recent chapter outings
  • “Butterflies in My Garden”, by Sheri Sweet, recounts their efforts and results in building their own beautiful garden.
  • “Wild European Honey Bees”, by Linda Jo Conn, a hive found nearby.
  • “The Dirt of Milam County”, by Linda Jo Conn, a field trip analyzing the variety of our dirt.
  • “The State of Water”, by Katherine Bedrich, what we learned from the experts about this precious resource.
  • “What’s in the Water”, by John Pruett, a fish tale about Catfish.
  • “Bring Back the Monarchs Comes to a Close”, by Debbi Harris, the conclusion of a most successful chapter project.
  • “Tree ID at Ledbetter”, by Linda Jo Conn, describes our field trip to Ledbetter Park to examine and ID many trees and more.
  • “Bird ID Workshop”, by Katherine Bedrich, shares what was learned at a McKinney Roughs Park training session.
  • “Certifications, etc.”, by Dorothy Mayer, updates our member’s awards and recognition through 2013.
  • “Did You Know?”, by Don Travis, asks and answers the question: “What’s the deadliest life form on earth?”

Download the Winter 2014 newsletter PDF for viewing or printing

Fall 2013 Newsletter PDF – 9 pages

  • “Prairie Tracks”, by Katherine Bedrich. Join her as she wonders at the majesty of nature called a prairie.
  • “Texas Plant Conservation” by Debbi Harris. She describes an Advanced Training session and field trip lead by one of our most favorite Naturalists, Dr. Flo Oxley.
  • “What’s the Best Birdseed for Fall?” by Don Travis.  This is based on a great article from eNature.com with lots of good feeding tips.
  • “Horny Toads” by Dorothy Mayer. Travel along with her personal theories on how these neat little creatures survive in our county.
  • “New Class Signup” by Dorothy Mayer.  This is especially for all our friends who are considering becoming a Master Naturalist.
  • “Junior Naturalist Summer Programs” by Katherine Bedrich. Read all about our chapter members working with our youth on fun and educational nature topics.
  • “Texas Native Plant Week” by Don Travis.  Learn a little more about the value of native plants in our environment, and ways to get involved.
  • “The Nature of Milam County” by Katherine Bedrich. See how our members are researching and documenting many fascinating flora and fauna found in our own backyards and nearby fields and forests.
  • “Watching Hawks” by Don Travis. These fascinating preditors are monitored closely regarding migration and population changes, since they occupy the top of their preditor food chain and may exhibit effects of environmental changes.
  • “Certification, etc.” by Debbi Harris.  Catch up on the awards and recognitions for our members.
  • “Did You Know?” by Don Travis.  Our regular factoid feature. This one titled “Will a Mouse Fit Through a Keyhole?”

Download Fall 2013 newsletter PDF small size for viewing.

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Summer 2013 Newsletter PDF – 11 pages

  • “Crawdads” – Our President’s regular “Prairie Tracks” column telling all about these neat little crustaceans.
  • “The Hognose Hoax” – by Donna Lewis relates a nice story about how she saved a hognose snake from her hunting dog, and got a nice show in the process.
  • “Pollinator Week” – by Katherine Bedrich on the synergy of insect feeding and plant reproduction the way nature does it best.
  • “Monarch Butterfly Garden Project” – by Debbi Harris.  Read all about this amazing volunteer project creating a certified Monarch Butterfly Waystation right here in Milam County.
  •  “If a Tree Falls in the Woods…” – by Dorothy Mayer.  The cycle of life continues with the crashing death of a mighty tree.
  •  “The Endangered Species Act” – by Katherine Bedrich explains a little history about this historic and critical legislation, and its major impact on biodiversity and saving hundreds of species from extinction.
  •  “Orphaned Baby Raccoon” – by Dorothy Mayer.  It’s a special feeling when you get to save one of nature’s neat little creatures.  Read how one person can make a difference.
  •  “Those Darn Cowbirds” – by Don Travis.  A little history on the breeding behavior of one of bird lovers’ favorite (ha ha) species.
  •  “In Honor of Jan ‘Owl Puke’ Wise” – by Linda Jo Conn. This is really about a stoic great horned owl posing proudly for many visitors at a wildlife center.
  •  “Thoughts Prompted by Observing Dung Beatles” – by Linda Jo Conn tells about these amazing little creatures busily going about their business without a care in the world, what we might learn from it, and what we have in common (Huh?).
  •  “Certifications, etc.” – by Debbi Harris brings us up to date on members recent certification awards.
  •  “Did You Know” – by Don Travis is our regular feature tidbit, this time about an animal with “A Face That Only a Mother Could Love”.

Download Summer 2013 newsletter PDF small size for viewing

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Spring 2013 Newsletter PDF – 13 pages

  • Prairie Tracks, by President Katherine Bedrich – The Striped and Spotted Skunk
  • The Dragonfly Dance, by Phyllis Shuffield – an original poem
  • Christmas Bird Counts or Self Inflicted Pain, by Ann Collins – the effort we made, and the beauty we saw
  • So Now I Know Why People Go Fishing…, by Katherine Bedrich – a groups experience with some 1st timers
  • Wonderful Whoopers, by Ann Collins and Paula Engelhardt – Whooper “fan” means fanatic, and a Kinship Recognized
  • Monarch Garden Butterfly Project, Debbi Harris – individual and group efforts to develop a garden and waystation
  • A Bird in the Hand, by Paula Engelhardt – holding a Red-Winged Blackbird after a window crash, and it’s recovery
  • Frogging Fun, by Katherine Bedrich – how to make sounds like the frogs
  • 2013 Nature Festival, by Don Travis – an overview of upcoming Festival highlights on April 12-13.
  • Random Pics, by Don Travis – some interesting photos, nature and otherwise
  • Certifications Etc., by Debbi Harris – an update on membership awards
  • Did You Know? A bit of history on 100,000 year old volcanic formation

Download Spring 2013 newsletter PDF small size for viewing

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Winter 2012-2013 Newsletter PDF – 16 pages

  • Prairie Tracks, by President Kathering Bedrish – The Queen Butterfly
  • 2012 Class Graduation, by Dorothy Mayer
  • There’s an owl with Sue Tayor’s name on it, by Ann Collins
  • 2012 TMN State Conference, by several authors
  • A Giant Leap into the unknown, by Linda Jo Conn
  • Thorndale Wilderness Club, by Katherine Bedrich
  • It ought to be a law, by Ann Collins
  • Whooper Book review, by Ann Collins
  • Houston Toad workshop, by Linda Jo Conn
  • Persimmon weather prediction, by Debbi Harris
  • A trip up Sugarloaf Mountain, by Linda Jo Conn
  • The plant that ate the Big Lump, by Genie Lindburg
  • Certifications, etc, by Debbi Harris
  • Did You Know? Do bears really hibernate all winter?

Download the Winter 2012-2013 newsletter here  (small size for viewing online

Download the Winter 2012-2013 newsletter here  (standard size for printing)

Fall 2012 Newsletter PDF – 9 pages

  • Prairie Tracks, by President Katherine Bedrich – Watching and Learning during our National Moth Week’s “Moths project”
  • Moth Watch – A Diary of My Learning Process, by Linda Jo Conn – her personal story of discovery and learning
  • A Pointed Question: How do Porcupines Mate? – all you want to know on this “touchy” subject, reprinted from eNature .com
  • Thoughts of a 2012 Trainee, by Linda Jo Conn – on the enlightenment of all things natural through our current student class
  • Observing Nature Project, by Katherine Bedrich – chapter members working with young kids at a local daycare about observing nature all around us
  • Scary Creatures of Halloween, reprint from eNature.com – why are bats, owls and spiders deemed such scary creatures?
  • A Toad Story, by Dorothy Mayer – a nice folksy tale about how a dogs playfulness led to toad happiness, and other toady recollections
  • Field Trip to Waco Mammoth Site, by Katherine Bedrich – our Chapter visit to see fossils from 68,000 years ago, and what we learned from them
  • Monarch Migrations, reprint from eNature.com – how it takes four generations and thousands of miles between our sightings of these beautiful creatures
  • Certifications, etc, by Debbi Harris – the latest in member awards and recognitions
  • Did You Know – What is Home to a Trillion Organisms? – The answer is “real close to home”, but read the newsletter to find out exactly where.

Download Fall 2012 newsletter here (small size for viewing online)

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Summer 2012 Newsletter PDF – 11 pages

  • Prairie Tracks, by President Katherine Bedrich – describes interesting details and photos regarding moths, and a neat poem to boot.
  • Use of Tools in Extraordinary Ways, also by Katherine – about the creativity of crows, bower birds and others in using tools to their benefit.
  • Snake Bite First Aid, by Don Travis – lots of good ID pics, and Do’s and Don’ts regarding handling snake bites.
  • My 2012 Summer “aha” Observation, by Dorothy Mayer – a tale of her and her dog Beaudreaux dealing with a copperhead.
  • Mine’s Bigger Than Yours, by Dorothy Mayer – who’s got the biggest pecan tree?
  • Who’s Watching Who? by Donna Lewis – an encounter with walking stick that spooked her into dropping her camera.
  • Reflections While Riding a Bicycle, by Genie Lundberg – how naturalist training has raised her awareness to wonderful sights of nature while riding.
  • Is It Really Worth It? by Sue Taylor – her story of the hard work on the nature festival being “worth it” with an enthusiastic hug and kiss from a young visitor.
  • A Blob of Bird Poop, by Ann Collins – from what that looked like, to the emergence of a Giant Swallowtail butterfly.
  • Certifications, etc, by Debbi Harris – the latest awards and pins by our members.
  • Did You Know – What Weighs 1 Ton, and Can Run 40 MPH and Jump 6 Feet in the Air? – Read the newsletter to find out.

Download Summer ’12 Newsletter here (small size for viewing)

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Spring 2012 Newsletter PDF – 11 pages.  Award winner at 2012 State Conference.

  • “The Masked Bandit”, by Katherine Bedrich – about that mischievous Raccoon
  • “Can’t See the Forest for the Trees”, by Sue Taylor – about childhood memories on the farm and helping grand-kids appreciate nature
  • “The Cricket and the Turtle”, by Dorothy Mayer – learn about a mysterious cricket holder and helping our red-eared sliders
  • “You Gotta Look Close”, by Donna Lewis – see what early spring beauties are  in that about-to-be-mowed lawn
  • “Ah! Costa Rica”, by Ann Collins – sharing her experience in nature in this tropical paradise
  • “Nature Time at the Apple Tree Day Care”, by Debbi Harris – chapter members helping pre-school kids learn about trees, birds and more
  • “Whooping Cranes and Alligators”, by Paula Engelhardt – tells about her trip to the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge near Corpus Christi
  • “2012 Nature Festival”, by Don Travis – read about our upcoming annual event and all it’s fun and educational content
  • “Did You Know” – What animal can stick its tongue in its ear?  Find out here.
  • “Certifications, Etc.” by Cindy Bolch – our 2012 Year to Date awards, and Lifetime Achievement award levels

Download Spring 2012 newsletter here (small size for viewing)

Download Spring 2012 newsletter here (HQ for printing)

Winter 2011-12 Newsletter PDF – 7 pages

  • “The Honey Mesquite Tree”, by Katherine Bedrich
  • “Sharing Nature Stories”, by our fellow naturalist members
  • “Nature in New York”, by Katherine Bedrich, on her recent search for bryophytes in the Empire State
  • “A Walk in the Forest”, by Donna Lewis, on her discovery of various mushrooms
  • “Birding at Cedar Hill Ranch-Part Two”, by Ann Collins and the feathered friends they found
  • “Did you Know?” – Do Armidillos sink or swim?  Find out here.
  • “Certifications, Etc.”, by Cindy Bolch – our 2011 Year to Date awards, and Lifetime Achievement awards levels.

Download Winter 11-12 newsletter here (small size for viewing)

Download the Winter 11-12 newsletter here (HQ for printing)

Fall 2011 Newsletter PDF – 9 pages

  • “The Year of the Turtle”, by Katherine Bedrich, all about fascinating creatures dating back some 200 million years.
  • “Sharing Nature Stories”, by some of our members, relating some interesting recent events.
  • “This Cameron 6 year old’s hobby just might bug you”, originally written by Jeanne Williams and published in the Temple Daily Telegram, it tells the story of Charlie Mayer and his hobby of collecting insects.
  • “Native Plant and Wildlife Quiz”, from eNature.com, tests your knowledge of the best plants for your wildscape and for wildlife.
  • “Birding at Cedar Hill Ranch”, written by Ann Collins, tells of the fun and success the birding group had doing a survey, and the 35 + species of birds as well as insects and other wildlife they observed.
  • “On Becoming a Naturalist”, by Michelle Fletcher, and what it means to her.
  • “Paraphrase of Genesis Chapter 1”, by Michelle Fletcher, about what God has given us that man has mismanaged.
  • “Tuff Year!”, by Donna Lewis, about our long drought and what she has done to keep her wildlife happy.
  • Our regular “Did You Know?” question – Where in the world in the least rainfall?
  • “Certifications, etc.” about the ongoing achievements of our fantastic volunteers.

Download Fall 2011 newsletter here (smaller size for viewing)

Download Fall 2011 newsletter here (HQ for printing)

Summer 2011 Newsletter PDF – 10 pages

“Ag in the Classroom”, by Katherine Bedrich – about our recent involvement in youth education.
” Come Alive”, by Linda McBride – a beautifully written love story about truly enhancing and appreciating the nature around us.
“Dry Times are High Time for a Good Time Outdoors”, by Tim Siegmund – our recent drought(s) and how nature adapts and blooms anyway.
“Bird Showers and Shows”, by Ann Collins – turn on your sprinkler and see the show that your bird friends will give you.
“My Updated Plans for Thirsty Summer Friends”, by Dorothy Mayer – the necessity and challenges in providing water for nature’s visitors.
“The Worst Baby Names Ever”, from eNature.com – pinkies, orange dogs, monkey slugs and more.  What’s your favorite?
“A Hummer in the Web”, by Ann Collins – a true and comical story of Ann’s attempts to rescue a Hummer caught in a spider web.  Way to go Ann!
“Certifcations, Etc.”, by Cindy Bolch – the latest update on our volunteers well deserved awards.
“Did You Know?”, by Don Travis – our regular feature on some interesting tidbit of nature’s fascinating world.

Download Summer 2011 newsletter here (small size for viewing)

Download Summer 2011 newsletter HQ here (high quality print version)

Spring 2011 Newsletter PDF – 8 pages

Prairie Tracks – about the Coyote
A preview of the 2011 Nature Festival
Our results from the Great Backyard Birdcount
An Owl makes a new home in Paula’s backyard
An original poem “Spring has Sprung”
Butterflies Awake!
Certifications, Etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Spring 2011 newsletter here (small size for viewing).

Download Spring 2011 newsletter HQ here (high quality print version)

Winter 2010 – 2011 Newsletter PDF – 9 pages

Prairie Tracks, from the President’s quill
On Being a Master Naturalist
Our 2010 Class Graduates
Do You Think Like a Worm?
Bower Birds Seduce With Illusion
Nature Festival 2011
Horny Toads
Certifications, etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Winter 10-11 newsletter here (small file size for viewing).

Download Winter 10-11 newsletter HQ here (high quality print version)

Fall 2010 Newsletter PDF – 11 pages – Award winner at 2010 State Conference.

Prairie Path, from the President’s quill
Remembering Ed, a testimonial from members to Ed Burleson
The Name Game, and Autumn’s Bounty, reprints from eNature.com
Haiku Poetry, part II
Walking the Walk
Our new website
Certifications, etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Fall 2010 newsletter here (small file size for viewing).

Download Fall 2010 newsletter here (print quality version).

Summer 2010 Newsletter PDF – 5 pages.

Special Nature Festival Issue – “Nature at its Best”

Download Summer 2010 Newsletter here.

Spring 2010 Newsletter PDF – 13 pages

Prairie Tracks, from the Presidents Quill
Nature Festival NEWS
Pictures along the way
Can you pass the TAKS?
P’nut Butter Suet Bird Block
Benefits of Joining ECRMN
Could you run on sunlight?
Backyard Hummingbirding
Storm Protection
Haiku Poetry
Hints and Tips
Upcoming Events
Certifications, Etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Spring 10 newsletter here.

Winter 09-10 Newsletter PDF – 8 pages.

Prairie Tracks, from the Presidents Quill
Seeds for the Millennium
Our 1st Annual Photo Contest
Upcoming Events
Certifications, Etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Winter 09-10 newsletter here.

Fall ’09 Newsletter PDF – 12 pages – Award Winner at 2009 State Conference

From The President‘s quill:  A Last Look From The Top
Outdoors with the VP
The Forest Underfoot, Part I
Citizen Science
Big and Historic Trees
Time to Plant and Prune
Along the Xavier Road
Upcoming Events
Certifications, Etc
“Did you know?” feature

Download Fall 09 newsletter here.

Summer ’09 Newsletter PDF – 12 pages

From The President‘s quill:  Hop Aboard the Conservation Train.
Our Committees
Fresh Water Mussels are good for Bass
Kayaking the Little River
A Conservation Ethic
From the Outdoors of the VP
Second ECRC class graduates
Milam County Nature Festival
Upcoming Events
Certifications, Etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Summer 09 Newsletter here.

Spring 2009 Newsletter – PDF – 12 pages

From The President‘s quill:  Time to Care for your “Pet”
How Old is Your Favorite Pet?
Texas Nature Trackers
Wild at Heart
The Complete Master Naturalist
Public Invited to Assist the Texas State Reptile
To Cull or not to Cull (deer)
Logos, Logos, and More Logos
Upcoming Events
Certifications, Etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Spring 2009 Newsletter here.

Winter 2008 – 2009 Newsletter – PDF – 9 pages

From The President‘s quill:  The Year to Adapt a “Pet”
The Game Warden‘s View: Winter Time in Milam County
Plant Identification Workshop
State Mtg. and Adv. Training
Milam County Nature Book
Perry Pecan Patch Camp Out
Mapping the El Camino Real
2009 Class Update
Upcoming Events
Certifications, Etc.
“Did you know?” feature

Download Winter 2008 2009 Newsletter here.

Fall 2008 Inaugural Issue – PDF – 10 page document

From The President’s quill: View From the Top of Sugarloaf
The Game Warden’s View: Wildlife around the County
What’s in a Name? El Camino Real?  Los Caminos?
Snake bite First Aid
Wildlife Management Ag Valuation
2009 Class Schedule
Upcoming Events
“Did you know?” feature

Download Fall 2008 Newsletter here.

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