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Monthly Activity Report Highlights for October, 2008
Southwest Region, October 31, 2008
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Yet another visitor attendance record was broken during this year's Balcones Canyonlands NWR Refuge Week celebration.  A total of 287 people attended the event on October 11.  Some of the increase was attributed to attendance by five Girl Scout troops, one Boy Scout troop, and the Twin Lakes YMCA Adventure Circle!  Clearly, the most popular activities attended were the Live Reptile Show,  the Butterfly Tent,  and  Monarch butterfly tagging.    Vistitors saw a record number of Monarchs as the creatures were “coating some tree branches in orange and black”.  Amphitheater program “What is in Your Backyard”? was also popular.  A grand total of 132 people participated in ten guided walks— including  “Birds and Butterflies for Beginners”, “Animals on the Move”, "Spider", "Dragonfly/Damselfly", “Native Useful Plants” and “Native Grasses:  the Big 4 and a Few More”.  The event also hosted a Photography Workshop.  “Creatures of the Pond” was a popular display. One Girl Scout troop and other volunteers helped collect the vertebrates and invertebrates from the pond for the display. Bird nest boxes, shirts, and pins were sold by the Friends.  KLRU-TV, Austin PBS did a photo shoot about the Monarch butterflies and butterfly tent for a program called “Docubloggers”.  Volunteers Craig & Mary Oveson’s Monarch butterfly trailer and Monarch raising program was included in the filming.  The Refuge Week celebration continued on October 12 with Monarch tagging and the presentation of two programs for Girl Scouts of America participants.  Twenty people participated in Monarch tagging at their leisure.  Some folks came from the Dallas area specifically to observe the wonder and catch/tag the Monarchs. Then, staff and volunteers helped Brownies and Junior Girl Scouts earn badges.  Thirty-four Brownies particiapted in the “Up, Down, and All Around" program, which entailed three natureslearning stations and  a guided nature walk.  Thirty-three Junior Girl Scouts  participatied in “Meeting Mother Nature” which included four nature learning stations and a guided nature walk.  In total, 374 visitors attended the Refuge Week celebration.  Volunteers for the event, 22 in all, contributed 215 hours.

 

Contact Info: Deborah Holle, (512)339-9432 ext. 10, Deborah_Holle@fws.gov



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