The Lost Pines chapter serves primarily Bastrop and Caldwell counties of Central Texas (click here to find a statewide list of chapters). These counties are predominantly in the Post Oak Savannah and Blackland Prairie Ecoregions. In addition, our area includes the unique “island forest” of the Lost Pines, the westernmost extent of the loblolly pine (Pinus taeda), separated by about 100 miles from the pine forests of East Texas. Species in the Lost Pines are particularly adapted to the drier conditions here, and provide unique habitat for varied flora and fauna that can be seen in Bastrop and Buescher state parks and other nearby natural areas. You can learn more about what makes these parks so special and see pictures of them by visiting our “State Parks & Natural Areas” page; you can also find many links to information about the native plants, animals and ecology of the Lost Pines region on our resources page.
- Bird Blind at Bob Bryant Park in BastropThe Bridge Maniacs team recently completed installation of a new bird blind in Bob Bryant park in Bastrop. The Texas Master Naturalist – Lost Pines Chapter partnered with the City of Bastrop, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD), Bastrop County Audubon Society, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) on this project. The posts… Read More →
- Leaping (Flying) LizardsAs heat waves shimmer in the air, a truck barrels down a dirty desert road in southern Utah’s vast Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. Inside, two men—a paleontologist and his graduate assistant—speed through canyons and along cliffs toward a plateau up ahead. In a swirling cloud of dust, the truck bounces to a stop on a… Read More →
- The Cutest Mammal You’ve Never SeenPersonal sightings of animals rarely seen in the wild have a way of making permanent impressions. Rare is not the same as rarely seen. Ocelots are rare; bobcats are rarely seen. But glimpsing a rarely seen animal can be especially astonishing when the animal is both secretive and gorgeous. Imagine you work for Texas Fish… Read More →
- Back Roads Nature–Huntsville State ParkA young American grew up among the Cherokee in Tennessee and later married a Cherokee woman. Imposing by character and courage, he was respected by all who knew him—the Cherokee gave him the name “Coleneh,” which means “raven”. An ambitious Sam Houston would later move to Texas and father a new republic. In his storied… Read More →
- The Life of SlimeWhat is the speed of dark? How much deeper would the oceans be if there were no sponges? How do you know when you’re out of invisible ink? Just when I feel like most of life’s mysteries have been solved, I realize my naivety. Take, for example, the life of a slime mold. Remember that… Read More →
- Mighty MesquiteAs I sit gazing around the room, my eyes are drawn to the rich, dark whorls of the mesquite mantle. Capping an immense fireplace, it’s the focus of the room—the highlight. Polished and dense, a once mighty trunk now adorns this simple cabin like an altar to strength and beauty. The rain outside tapping against… Read More →