|  TPWD News Releases Dated 2009-12-14                                    |
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[ Note: This item is more than seven years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
[ Additional Contacts: Mona Farmer (903) 670-2228 or mona.farmer@tpwd.texas.gov ]
Dec. 14, 2009
Nominations Sought for Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame
ATHENS, Texas -- Individuals or organizations that have made a lasting contribution to freshwater fishing in Texas may be nominated through February 26 for induction into the Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame.
Nominations may be made in the categories of industry, angler or media. The nominee must be a Texan or Texas organization. Individuals may be either living or deceased. One nominee will be chosen by an independent selection committee and formally inducted during the annual Hall of Fame banquet at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens.
Prior inductees include Floyd Mabry, Jackie Hewlett, R.D. Hull, Bob Kemp, Nick Crème, Charlie Inman, Sugar Ferris, Leonard Ranne, Earl Golding, Kathy Magers, the Sabine River Authority, Skeeter Boats, Michael ("Shorty") Powers, Ray Murski, Albert S. Bradley, Richard M. Hart, William B. ("Doc") Shelton, Charlie Pack and Paul Hinton.
Nomination forms and instructions are available on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department web site or by calling (903) 670-2228.
On the Net:

[ Note: This item is more than seven years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ] [TH]
Dec. 14, 2009
Texas Master Naturalist Program Seeks Applicants
Training Classes Offered Across the State January-March
Austin, Texas -- Thirteen chapters of the Texas Master Naturalist program have announced training classes across the state starting January through March for volunteers who want to learn about and help conserve natural resources.
The Texas Master Naturalist program, now with 38 chapters, aims to develop a corps of well-informed citizen volunteers who can help educate their communities about the management of natural resources. Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and Texas Cooperative Extension co-sponsor the Texas Master Naturalist Program statewide.
The main qualification needed to become a certified Texas Master Naturalist is a desire to learn and play an active part in conservation. Volunteers receive about 40 hours of training from educators and specialists from places such as universities, agencies, nature centers and museums. Training topics include interpretation and management of natural resources, ecological concepts, eco-regions of Texas and natural systems management.
Volunteers are expected to give 40 hours of service a year in community education, demonstration and habitat enhancement projects. They are also expected to pursue a minimum of eight hours of advance training in areas of personal interest.
Texas Master Naturalist Chapters offering volunteer training beginning in January 2010 are listed alphabetically by city below with contact information. Enrollment is limited in most chapters. Some chapter registration deadlines may have passed but applicants may contact the chapter to see if seating is still available.
--Amarillo -- Panhandle Chapter. Training begins February 13. For more information, phone (806) 367-0648 or email: sec@pctmn.org
--Brenham -- Gideon Lincecum Chapter. Class begins February 6 at the Winedale Historical Center. Details are available from Judith_deaton@yahoo.com or call (936) 878-9900.
--Burnet -- Highland Lakes Chapter. Classes begin March 4 and registration is due by December 31, 2009. For information phone (325) 379-1455 or email: drrayb@tstar.net
--Conroe -- Heartwood Chapter. Training begins on March 27 and applications are due no later than March 15. Details are available at (832) 381-6921 or email: training@heartwoodtmn.org
--Dallas -- North Texas Chapter. The chapter will host an open house for applicants on January 12. The application deadline is January 22 and classes begin February 16. Information is available at education@ntmn.org.
--Jefferson -- Cypress Basin Chapter. Class begins on January 22. Details are available on the chapter's website: http://grovesite.com/tmn/cbc or contact bgmorgan46@yahoo.com. Deadline for registration is January 5.
--McKinney -- Blackland Prairie Chapter. The chapter will host an open house on January 12 at the Heard Museum. Registration is due by February 1. Class begins on February 10. Details are available at (972) 248-6283 or email svevans@sbcglobal.net
--Rockport -- Mid-Coast Chapter. Class begins on February 13 and registration is needed by December 15, 2009. Information is available at (361) 578-3893 or email lynne.hughes@visd.com
--San Antonio -- Alamo Area Chapter. Classes start February 25 and applications are due by February 9. For information phone (210) 764-1921 or email: pball12@satx.rr.com
--San Benito -- Rio Grande Valley Chapter. Registration is due January 6 for the class that begins on January 13. Details are available at http://www.rgvctmn.org/ or call (956) 455-9204.
--Tyler -- East Texas Chapter. Class begins on January 12 and your registration is needed by January 8. More information is available at irene.hamel@tpwd.texas.gov or telephone (903) 566-9394.
--Waco -- Heart of Texas Chapter. Plans are currently being made to host an orientation program at the Lake Waco Wetlands on January 14. Information and details are available from meganmi@ci.waco.tx.us
--Wichita Falls -- Rolling Plains Chapter. Class begins on March 23 and registration is needed by March 16. Details available by calling (940) 766-2383 or email: mark.howell@tpwd.texas.gov
For more information about existing Texas Master Naturalist chapters or forming a new chapter contact Assistant Program Coordinator Sonny Arnold, 111Nagle Hall, 2258, TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-2258, or reach him at sarnold@ag.tamu.edu or (979) 458-1099.
On the Net:

[ Note: This item is more than seven years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
[ Additional Contacts: Bill Rodney, (281) 534-0127, bill.rodney@tpwd.texas.gov; or Jennie Rohrer, (281) 534-0103, jennie.rohrer@tpwd.texas.gov; Research Vessel Karankawa Cell Phone: 832-226-9834 ]
Dec. 14, 2009
Galveston Bay Oyster Reef Restoration Project Gets $50,000 SARP/NOAA Grant
HOUSTON -- Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has received a $50,000 grant from the Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership (SARP) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to continue and expand oyster reef restoration in Galveston Bay.
The grant will help fund Phase 2 of the North Shore Eagle Point Oyster Restoration Project, located along the north facing shoreline of Eagle Point near the community of San Leon. Phase 1 of the project created seven patches of oyster reef in shallow near-shore waters between 18th and 15th streets in San Leon, including two patches adjacent to the 18th Street Fishing Pier. Phase 2 will extend the project to the shallow near shore waters between 15th and 9th Streets.
Like the first phase completed in September, Phase 2 will restore at least 2.5 acres of oyster reef habitat, divided up into several smaller patches of reef habitat. The purpose is to improve recreational fishing in the area and to provide other "ecosystem services" from oyster reefs.
The reefs will be located near privately owned piers and in waters currently closed to commercial oyster fishing due to high bacteria counts. The project will seek to enlist local pier owners to act as stewards of the newly created reefs and to grow baby oysters by hanging mesh bags filled with oyster shells from their piers, a process known as "oyster gardening." Gardened oysters will be deposited on top of the reefs after construction is completed to quickly establish an oyster population. None of the oysters produced by the project will be used for human consumption.
One of the primary ecological functions of oyster reefs is water filtration. Oysters feed by filtering tiny plants known as phytoplankton from the water, and a single oyster can filter up to 50 gallons of water a day. This filter feeding also removes silt and contaminants from the water, thus making oyster reefs nature's bio-filters. Oyster reefs also provide habitat for numerous bottom-dwelling fish and invertebrates which are in turn food for larger game fish. Scientists refer to these various functions of oyster reefs, including providing product for the commercial fishing industry, as "ecosystem services".
In addition to SARP and NOAA, TPWD has partnered with the Galveston Bay Foundation, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Natural Resources Damage Assessment Trustees (an ad hoc group comprised of representatives from NOAA, USFWS, TPWD, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Texas General Land Office) on this project and will continue to look for opportunities to continue this type of work in the future. SARP is a coalition of state and federal government agencies operating in the southeastern United States.
For more information, the public may contact Bill Rodney with TPWD in Dickinson, (281) 534-0127, bill.rodney@tpwd.texas.gov, or Jennie Rohrer, (281) 534-0103, jennie.rohrer@tpwd.texas.gov.