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WICHITA MOUNTAINS
Southwest Region, October 6, 2006
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The month of September was a good one for The Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge Environmental Education program. In September there were two thousand two hundred thirty seven (2237) participants who took part in on and off site EE programs. Three hundred sixty three (363) participated in on-site programs while one thousand eight hundred seventy four (1874) participated in off-site programs. Some of the highlights and events that EE presented and participated in during September were: The Comanche County Fair, Lawton, OK which attracted one thousand two hundred seventy-eight (1278) youth; The Bio-Blitz that took place at Quartz Mountain State Park and drew two hundred eleven (211) participants; Jakes Days, which was hosted by the Wild Turkey Federation and held at the Goodyear Tire Plant was enjoyed by one hundred eighty visitors (180). The Neighborhood Watch Picnic held at Cleveland Elementary School in Lawton, Oklahoma, attracted two hundred five participants (205); Waylon Baptist College brought forty-eight (48) students to run water test transects and do an assessment of species and population richness; Also an Ecology class for ninety-one (91) students with the continuing education program from Rose State College, Midwest City, OK; A class of eleven (11) graduate students who came to learn about the mixed short grass prairie here at the Wichita Mountains from the University of Oklahoma.  Two Native American groups visited the refuge, one group was nine (9) Apache Tribal Elders from Anadarko, OK and the others were one hundred sixteen (116) visiting Shoshones from Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, and Arizona. They were here to take part in the Shoshone Language Reunion with the Comanche Tribe; Also, a visit from fifteen (15) true heroes from the Lawton/Fort Sill Veterans Center. It is always a great honor to have these gentlemen visit our refuge. The refuge is continuing to coordinate with partners in the planning for the 2007 Bison Centennial.  

 

September 26 the Refuge held an elk and deer hunt coordination meeting with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation to plan for 2006 Wichita Mountain hunts scheduled to begin on November 6, 2006.

 

September 21, 2006 was the date of the 63rd Annual Texas Longhorn Auction at the Wichita Mountains.  Approximately 350 people attended this year’s auction, with a total of 87 registered buyers bidding on 140 longhorn.  Some local and area schools turn out for field trips to observe animal behavior, and teachers also use the sales information to create math curricula for students.  The Lawton Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Friends of the Wichitas are annual partners supporting the Refuge on auction day.    

 

Contact Info: Martin Valdez, 505-248-6599, martin_valdez@fws.gov



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