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TPWD News Release — Aug. 14, 2006

El Paso Workshop Geared To Small Acreage Landowners

EL PASO, Texas — A workshop to be held Sept. 9 will help West Texas landowners learn more about available tools to manage wildlife habitat and diversify income on smaller properties between two and 2,000 acres.

The workshop is part of a statewide series designed to address the growing problem of Texas rural lands being fragmented into smaller tracts, often involving urban-based owners who are interested in wildlife conservation but may lack experience in wildlife or land management.

Land fragmentation is one of the main threats to wildlife in Texas. It crowds wildlife into smaller spaces, blocks travel corridors and disrupts access to feeding areas.

The El Paso workshop will focus on resources, tools and programs to help landowners achieve their individual goals while managing property to benefit wildlife.

Workshop topics include evaluating habitat, covering soils, plants, and water requirements for wildlife; restoration ecology, such as controlling erosion and invasive plants, grazing rotation and managing for wildlife habitat, featuring strategies for game and non-game animals; and programs that assist landowners, including technical guidance, collaborative planning for wildlife, hunting leases, nature tourism and wildlife tax valuation (>100 acres). Local wildlife professionals from TPWD and other organizations will give presentations regarding habitat and species management techniques, wildlife tax valuation and other topics at the workshop.

“The loss of habitat and wildlife in Texas is directly proportional to urbanization, land fragmentation and the introduction of exotic (non-native) species,” said Lois Balin, TPWD urban wildlife biologist in El Paso. “Landowners have the distinctive ability to assist in restoring habitat and wildlife diversity by participating in one of the many private landowner programs available. This workshop will provide the foundation of resources and tools needed to help landowners manage their property for the benefit of wildlife while supplementing their income.”

TPWD and the Texas Cooperative Extension are sponsoring the event, which will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sept. 9 at the A&M Research Center, 1380 A&M Circle in El Paso.

The cost for the workshop is $25 per person or $40 per couple, which covers lunch, refreshments and materials. Registration is required by Sept. 4 to ensure that organizers have sufficient workshop materials for attendees. For more information and reservations, contact Lois Balin at (915) 774-9603 or or see the Landowner Workshops calendar on the TPWD Web site.


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