In July Omar Bocanegra presented for Second Saturday, on Dragonflies and Damselflies. Jim Varnum led a driving tour of the Refuge following the program. Later in July Aaron Blount gave a program on Snakes of Hagerman. Work got underway on the new Butterfly Garden at the Refuge, and the entry period for the 5th annual HNWR Nature Photography Contest opened. Laura Cooper was July Photographer of the Month.
|Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, by Laura Cooper|
“Along Came a Spider”, for Youth FIRST, and "ABC's of Bats", with Dr. Bryon Clark, for Second Saturday in August. Jesus Moreno, graphics artist, designed and contributed a new logo for the Friends use. The list of sponsors for the new Butterfly Garden was growing rapidly. The Bluestem Chapter, Texas Master Naturalist, began a series of fall classes for new candidates. Photographer of the Month was Holly Cantu.
|Reflections, by Holly Cantu|
in September, Bert Garcia, Chair for the Nest Box Monitors reported an 82% success rate for the 2014 season. Nature Nook Chairs Roger and Sally Peckenpaugh announced that Ducks Unlimited had donated a series of waterfowl prints to the Friends to sold in the book and gift shop. Youth FIRST topic for the month was "Who Lives in a Pond", and following a guided bird walk led by Jack Chiles, Dr. Wayne Meyer, in memory of Martha, the last Passenger Pigeon, spoke on “Extinct Birds”. Photographer of the Month for September was Randy Conaway.
|Curious Bobcat, by Randy Conaway|
Youth FIRST enjoyed “Owls- they’re a Hoot” in October, and Second Saturday featured Dr. George Diggs, on “Ferns of Texas”, following a guided bird walk led by Jack Chiles. Workampers Bill and Carol Powell, and Barry and Lynn Burkhardt shared their experiences and wisdom at FAQ’s about Workamping. Butterfly Garden sponsors enjoyed a preview party celebrating progress on the new garden. George Cooper was named October photographer of the month.
|Greater Roadrunner, by George Cooper|
For November, Youth First learned about “Animals – Masters of Disguise”. Jack Chiles led the year’s last bird walk and Jessica Healy presented “what About the Bobcat” for Second Saturday. Photo contest winners were announced; sweeping the field were Jesus Moreno, Lee Hatfield, Randy Conaway and Bob Brown. Record numbers turned out to hear The Country Roads Band and enjoy High on the Hawg, chaired by Ron Varley, on November 15. Hannah Frosch was Photographer of the Month.
|Follow the Signs, by Hannah Frosch|
And – December – Honk, Honk – Geese at Hagerman was the youth topic, while “Bobwhite Quail”, presented by Jason Hardin, TPWD, was featured for Second Saturday. The Christmas Bird Count attracted a record number of participants and found 104 species, plus 11 more during “Count Week.” Amanda Burns was Photographer of the Month. Volunteers finished up the first phase of planting in the new garden and attended the first in a series of Monarch Conservation webinars.
|On the Beach, by Amanda Burns|
Now we are one week into 2015 and plans are afoot for another great year, thanks to all the Friends, volunteers and Refuge staff!