Monthly Archives: May 2010

Field Log 5/30/2010 (Coneflowers)

North Erath County, Texas, Lat 32.43 N, Long -98.36 W, elev. 1,086 ft. Turkey Creek Quad.

General Log

Weather has been hot, 90 deg. F. plus, last few days.  Air is almost completely calm.  Some slight breeze from the south.

Grass is drying up, browning.  Seeds are become ripe and falling off.

This week, Shiney goes for sale at Shawnee, Oklahoma.  We leave on Thursday, come back on Sunday.  The most important objective is guarantee that Shiney will have a good home, regardless of the auction price.

F-250 in shop for air conditioner repair.  Have been looking at new and used F-250s to purchase.  The trucks have been repaired frequently in the last week, ranging from oil pumps to the F-150 bearings and now the air conditioner.

Barn Swallows and Feeding Wild Birds by Hand (A Method Observed)

In the evening, Barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) encircle our ranch house on Poprock Hill and feed on mosquitoes and flies.  A nest of barn swallows have hatched fledglings on our back porch.  Notice the characteristic sharply-notched tail.  This photograph was taken in the morning.  If I sit quietly on the porch, the swallows will angle under the eve of the porch and fly within three or four feet of where I am sitting.  Last year, a resident wren that fed about the porch landed on my hat and pecked around on my hat for about a minute until it flew off.   I will set the camera up for remote operation and see if I can photograph the wren on my hat.  When I lived in Paris, I was always intrigued by the young man at Notre Dame that would sit in a chair about the sidewalk and hedge and have the sparrows feed out of his hand.  The method he used was to look away from the birds and extend his arm back from his body (like in handing off a baton) so that the birds did not see his eyes or mouth (specific threat areas for birds).  The young man was neither monk nor priest, but a lad that loved birds.

Barn Swallow in Flight, Photo by J. Matthews

Wildflower Photography and Hoe Downing with Bull Nettle (Not a Dance)

On May 23, 2010, Brenda and I drove the F-150 to Pecan Tree Pasture for her to photograph wild flowers and for me to hoe down Bull Nettle.

Wild Flowers alongside SH 108 at Gate 3 Entrance, Photo by B. Matthews

Lemon Horsemint, Photo by B. Matthews

This blossoming plant is the Lemon horsemint (Monarda citriodora Cerv. ex Lag.)  It is also known as the Lemon beebalm, Horsemint, Purple horsemint or Plains horsemint.  Several stands of this plant are about the place.  Over near the pecan tree, a few blossoms are present.  The biggest stand of Lemon horsemint is back up by the barn, about an old hearth location that goes back for several decades, perhaps prehistoric.  The Lemon horsemint is attractive to butterflies and bees.

Clasping Coneflower, Photo by B. Matthews

This yellow-leafed blossom is the Clasping Coneflower (Dracopis amplexicaulis).  It is also know as Clasping-leaf Coneflower.  It differs from the Black-eyed Susan and Mexican Hat.  This particular species has medicinal qualities: the Cherokee used the  juice of root for earache and a tea, made from the leaves, was used as a tonic and diuretic.

Unidentified Plant and Blossom (Now Identified)

Bush Vetchling or Manystem Pea, Photo by B. Matthews

Here we have an unidentified plant and blossom.  (See update for identification in next paragraph.)  I first thought it a Skull-cap (Scutellaria drummondii), but I am not sure.  Like my previous analysis regarding the Mariposa and Wine-cup, I must go back over to the pecan tree area and re-photograph and take a sample of the full plant, not merely the blossom.  One of the interesting aspects of posting this photograph and determining genus and species is that I look more closely at the photograph to make sure I get it right, and upon looking closer at the photograph, I see bean pods that I did not notice while I was in the field — see if you can spot the pods.

Update:  The unidentified plant and blossom is the Bush Vetchling or Manystem Pea from the Lathyrus genus, more than likely the species montanus or nissolia.  The Lady Bird Johnson Wildlife Center lists several species including polymorphus and brachycalyx ssp. zionis. Thank you, Grethe Bachmann of Thrya Blog and Flora and Fauna Blog for the identification.  I never would have found it since it does not appear the two general sources of plants I use for identification.  You can go to Grethe’s blogs by linkage from my blogroll on my Homepage.

Texas Prickly Pear, Photo by B. Matthews

This is the blossom of the Texas Prickly Pear (Opuntia engelmannii var. lindheimeri).  The blossoms are especially brilliant.

Indian Blankets with Shelton Rock Hills, Photo by B. Matthews

This is a stand of Indian Blankets with the Shelton Rock Hills (north and south) in the background.  The direction of the camera is west.  To the right (north) is The Grove and Salt Creek.

With this hot weather, the horses go back to the stables for shade and water.  I attend to them at about 6:00 p.m. everyday.

Jack Matthews with Hoe and Clasping Coneflower (2010), Photo by B. Matthews

I am actually in a much, much better mood than what this photograph belies.  In the pasture, I’ve been hoeing a few Bull Nettle down and it is rather hot, late in the morning.  Note the large stand of Big Bluestem grass to my left.  I’ve been careful to keep the Big Bluestem from getting shredded for several years and now it grows higher than me in the field.  Please also note the tool on my left side.  That is a hoe.  Not machinery, a manual tool.  Kinda Luddite-ish, don’t you think?

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Santa Fe Wine Festival is Coming!

The Santa Fe Wine Festival poster for July 2010

"Blessings from the Vine," S. J. Shaffer, Santa Fe Wine Festival Poster 2010

William Rotsaert: Artist that Painted Santa Fe Wine Festival Poster for 2009

The Santa Fe Wine Festival is July 3-4, 2010, 12 noon to 6 p.m. at El Rancho de las Golondrinas, outside of Santa Fe.  See directions on the two website links below.

Last year, Brenda and I attended the Santa Fe Wine Festival in July 2009.  I’m not for sure if we can attend this year, but we would like to engage the fun and festivities if we could.  In any case, here are some photos from last year’s wine festival to ramp up the mood for wine and food.

El Rancho de las Golondrinas is the location of the wine festival, a living history museum of Spanish colonial New Mexico, translated as, “The ranch of the swallows.”

The website for the Santa Fe Wine Festival is Santa Fe Wine Festival.

Brochure of 2009 Santa Fe Wine Festival. This brochure details the wineries in New Mexico and the associated vendors at the festival.  Quite colorful brochure with more information about William Rotsaert.

Brenda Matthews with Our Wine and Glasses 2009

Wine Festival Thoroughfare 2009

Shade and Wine at the Festival 2009

El Rancho de Las Golondrinas Adobe Buildings

Santa Fe Wine Festival 2009 with Clouds

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A Prelude to the Prairie Sagebrush Awards for 2010

A Prelude to the Prairie Sagebrush Awards for 2010

[The full collection of posts will be posted on my blogging anniversary, June 27, 2010, but I thought you might like a prelude to the collection.  I won’t start counting the comments for donation purposes until June 27, 2010.]

Well, here they are, the best posts of my blogger friends!  The Prairie Sagebrush Awards for 2010!  I have picked one post from each of my blogger friends I have known for several months.  The criteria for selecting the post is based on narrative unity, coherence, literacy, specificity and emotional appeal.  These selections I’ve made are full of haute prose, local color, personal intensity and revelation of character.

For each reader comment (one comment per person), I will donate one dollar to a Wildlife Corridor fund in Texas and New Mexico ($500.00 limit).

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Stark Raving Zen on “Joy of Barbed Wire.” Kristy Sweetland lives in Raton, New Mexico.  Her blog, Stark Raving Zen, concerns her personal odyssey to the land of enchantment.  She and her husband go frequently out into the back country of New Mexico and have written and photographed numerous posts about small towns and wildlife.  Kristy’s writing is quite serious and she has embarked on a new career in psychology.  Yet, even in her serious writings and musings, a streak of comedy breaks through, as you can read below.

After two months of living here I have to admit that every now and then I find myself going absolutely bonkers. I can’t find fennel in any grocery store. I can’t eat sushi unless I’m willing to drive three hours to get it. There are no book stores or vegetarian markets. We are in the middle of no…where….

I asked a town veterinarian what one does in case of an after-hours pet emergency, recently, and he said, “I’ll answer my phone if I’m around….” Not exactly reassuring. Then I went to a Raton theatre production, and there he was up on stage, acting his finest Bob Cratchett. All I could think of while I sat there in the dark, was Finlay [pet dog] at home one night bloating up or something, while our vet twirled Tiny Tim above his head. New Mexico is no place for the neurotic, that’s for certain. And where it comes to pets, they just don’t get any more neurotic than me.

Last night my husband and I went out for a big night on the town. We chose a new restaurant to try which had been written up in Frommer’s New Mexico travel guide as a must-stop. It was the most bizarre, borderline disturbing experience I’ve had in quite some time. All I wanted was a cheese enchilada. It seems, however, that you can’t get a cheese enchilada at this fine establishment sans sea of pork or beef sauce, which I don’t eat. Rather than work with me a little, I mean, I would have eaten it with nothing but salsa on top, this surreal waitress simply informed me that I “couldn’t order the cheese enchilada if I didn’t eat beef or pork.”  So I settled on a really mediocre substitute, when what I should have done is just gone elsewhere. But then, had we done that, I would have missed out on overhearing the life drama of some other patrons sharing our dining experience that night.

A rancher man, complete with western shirt, Wranglers, and an alabaster ten-gallon hat, sat with his wife and teen aged son. The kid had the typical wry, smug aura of an 18 year old, who had recently found himself in some trouble with the law. Though it was not certain what he had done, it was clear that he felt no remorse for it, and that nobody had been harmed in the infraction’s making. He thought it was funny. The rancher dad… didn’t seem amused. But when the kid shook his head, suppressing a laugh, and said, “I don’t know! All I remember is lights flashing on me, unable to move, ’cause I was all wrapped up in barbed wire. It’s not like I could run away.”   They finished their meals and stalked out, leaving Aaron and me to quell wild laughter, as much as we tried to rise above it.

So looking at the silver lining here, had I gone to another restaurant which would have served me the cheese enchilada I craved, I would have missed out on this classic western story. I mean, the visual of some kid wrapped up like a barbed wired burrito while attempting to roll away from the local sheriff, flashlights and cop cars illuminating the scene of the hilarious high-desert crime is worth any poor dining experience isn’t it? I can see the police officer, walkie-talkie in hand, mumbling back to headquarters, “Found the perp. No need for backup.” Could I get that kind of priceless voyeurism in Minneapolis? I think not. So when I start to focus on the human experience in Raton, those everyday things that this part of the world doesn’t provide, I need only switch my focus back to the understanding of what it does provide. Rich experience, the free flow of writing material, the natural world in abundance, and the opportunity for me to grow, despite the dearth of fennel, book stores, and sushi.

(Stark Raving Zen, “The Joys of Barbed Wire”)

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Next:  The Block, Teresa Evangeline, Evangeline Art Photography, New Mexico Art Photography and more!

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Prairie Sandbur and Bull Nettle

Two New Discoveries of Flowering Plants

In my regular field work here on Flying Hat, two new discoveries were made this morning of Texas flowering plants.  One discovery  was the Texas Skeleton Weed (Lygodesmia texana), also known as Purple Dandelion, Flowering Straw.  The other discovery, this one rather exciting, was the Prairie Sandbur (Krameria lanceolata), also known by the name of Crameria, Ratany or Trailing Ratany.  Before we go to the Prairie Sandbur (accurate spelling), let’s look at the Texas Skeleton Weed, shall we?  (I’m beginning to sound like Mr. Rogers here.)

Texas Skeleton Weed

Texas Skeleton Weed, May 2010

This beautiful lavender flower is the Texas Skeleton Weed (Lygodesmia texana), also referred to as the Purple Dandelion, Flowering Straw.  These flowers appeared rather suddenly in the last two or three days.  The term skeleton is applied because of the  leafless stems and the odd angles of the stems, analogous to skeletal assemblies.  According to Loughmiller, Texas Wildflowers, “When the stems are broken, they exude sap which coagulates into a gum.”  The medicinal qualities of this plant are presently unknown to me.  I am currently searching my bookselves for my medicinal plant book for North America.  I do have Richard Evans Schultes, Hallucinogenic Plants, New York: Golden Press, 1976, but this Texas Skeleton Weed is not in it.  I don’t like the term, “weed.”  This plant is far to beautiful to be designated, “weed.”  Perhaps the Bull Nettle is a weed, but I even have my doubts about the construct of the botanical term, “weed” applied to it.  Weed carries a cultural signification of unwanted, not desirable or bad.  I know we use the term, “weed,” a great deal and I understand the context, but I think it should be dropped from the lexicon.

Prairie Sandbur

Prairie Sandbur Cluster, May 2010

Prairie Sandbur Close-up, May 2010

The Prairie Sandbur is the reddish flower in the photographs above.  It is also known as the Trailing Krameria, Ratany, Crameria and Trailing Ratany.  This is not the sandbur of the grass family.  The leaves and flowers grow from prostrate branches.  According to Loughmiller, this plant and flower is neither conspicuous nor abundant.  They state that the Prairie Sandbur does occur in many parts of the Trans-Pecos River area of Texas.  Our ranch is in the West Cross Timbers region of Texas.  We are Trans-Brazos by about 50 miles westward.  This Prairie Sandbur was found on the east side of Poprock Hill in a well-drained slope area.  This plant may be the rarest find on our place.  I have looked carefully about Poprock Hill and this is the only cluster!

Texas Bull Nettle, Stinging Nettle, Tread-Softly, Spurge Nettle or STAY AWAY FROM THIS THING!

I went out to the Pecan Tree Pasture this morning and hoed or cut out by the hoe some 100 or so Bull Nettles (Cnidoscolus texanus).  I still have about one more acre to hoe.

Bull Nettle (White Blossoms) in Pecan Tree Pasture, May 2010

Here you see the white blossoms of the Bull Nettle in the field.  Actually, hoeing the plant is rather easy since the vascular main stems are soft at this stage of growth, plus with all the rain we have had, the soil is soft.  This photograph is looking southward, towards the Old Bryant Place, and you can see that the pecan tree, for whom this pasture is named has dark-green foliage.

Single Bull Nettle Plant in Pecan Tree Pasture, May 2010

The Bull Nettle is a plant to be avoided.  The plant has leaves that are prickly as well as the stem and if you brush up against it, the nettles will sting.  Loughmiller says the effect of the nettles will last 30-45 minutes.  The stems, if broken, will exude a sap that some people discover, too late, is an allergen.

Today, I brushed up against a Bull Nettle once and I was wearing denim jeans (Wranglers), but the nettle penetrated the denim and I felt a sharp sting.  It was a light brushing, just once, but still burned.  I have a quick recovery to Bull Nettle in my system and the stinging lasted for about one minute.   My initial contact with Bull Nettle occurred when I was three or four-years old and I was with my mother and grandmother at the Sand Cemetery in Bend, Texas.  They were on a cemetery clean-up for our ancestors’ graves when I grabbed a Bull Nettle (trying to help) in my right hand.  It had a lovely blossom.  I really, really experienced pain, especially in the palm of my hand, and for several years, the palm would erupt in a rash.  I think that early exposure to Bull Nettle gave me a bit of tolerance, but not immunity.

The Bull Nettle has a personal and family history that goes back sixty-four years, to a time when we cleaned up the cemetery for the Morris, Baxter and Brazil families at Bend, Texas.  With the 400 or so Bull Nettles I have scooped out of my pasture, every Bull Nettle or so, I think of my family and how I came to be doing precisely this hoeing, on this cloudy day in Texas.

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Notes:

A fine source for identifying Texas wildflowers is Campbell and Lynn Loughmiller, “Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide,” Austin: University of Texas Press, 1989.

I supplement my typing operations with cross-checking from other sources, particularly the online services listed under my page, “Native Shrub Identification Guide.”  The sources found online at the Ladybird Johnson Wildlife Center are quite valuable.

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Field Log 5/21/2010 Native Prairie Grass Restoration

North Erath County, Texas, Lat 32.43 N, Long -98.36 W, elev. 1,086 ft.  Turkey Creek Quad.

Early this spring I planted a variety of native grasses in Pecan Tree and Poprock Hill Pastures.  Some sprouts have come up and the native wild flower mix I integrated into the seed broadcast has yielded flowers.  I have committed to minimum impact farming and stock-tending on the land.  One principle is to allow native prairie grasses to flourish and reseed areas that are sparse.  A second principle is to manually work the land, where possible, such as using the garden hoe, grubbing hoe, shovel and pick rather than machinery–minimum use of the tractor.

To work manually, I hoed six acres, cutting Bull Nettle with a garden hoe.  Approximately 300 nettle scooped out.

Poprock Hill Pasture with Soil Prepared for Reseeding

Pecan Tree Pasture with Native Grass

I still have some nettle to remove, but two-thirds has been eradicated by the hoe–no herbicides used.  If I had used the recommended herbicides, I would have had to keep livestock off the pasture for several weeks plus purchase the herbicides and spray tank.  As it was, when I hoed, I discovered areas in the 35 acre pasture that could use a disc plow to aerate and some natural fertilizer for enriching the soil.  If I had not been close to the ground with my hoe, I would not have seen the land profoundly.

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The Hardin Way

Jimmie Hardin Quarter Horses in Aubrey, Texas

Shiners Fannin Pepto, my one-year-old colt, is being ground trained and fit for the Summer Sale at Triangle Sales, Shawnee, Oklahoma, on June 5, 2010.

I took him as far as I could in ground training, but it was time to send him to Jimmie Hardin Quarter Horses in Aubrey, Texas, for training and conditioning for sale.

Jimmie Hardin in Show

I went up to Aubrey, Texas, yesterday, to see Jimmie and Shiney.

I hardly recognized him since he has a month’s growth since I last saw him.  But, that’s not all.  He has been groomed and taught manners.  He stands on his four feet in a show pose and is learning to trot with Peppy, his trainer, and Jimmie.

Jimmie Hardin has been Aubrey, Texas, for several decades, building upon the horse business of her father.  The little town of Aubrey has grown up around her.  Jimmie’s corrals border the Aubrey High School and a Sonic drive-in is just down the street.  She says that nowadays land is selling by the square foot.

Jimmie told me to go up to Shawnee on the third of June, settle Shiney into his stall and have him presented for passers-by when they come and look on Friday, the day before the Saturday sale.  She is going to purchase a leather halter and stud chain for Shiney to look his best.  There will be a bit of silver on the halter to sparkle.  I want him to look his best and that means leather halter.

Equine Body History

Horsewoman Hardin said that Shiney has taken a real liking to Peppy, the handler with whom you see in the photograph.  Peppy grooms and trots Shiney.  They have a bond together.  The treatment that Jimmie and Peppy give to my colt will engender confidence in him to trust humans and know that their touch will be kind and never hurtful.  With older horses, like my Star (levitating horse in winter), you can discern the history of treatment to them.  Ears, feet and flanks of the equine body embed the treatment of years past and one can see kind firmness, but also mistreatment and mistakes.  Experienced horsemen and horsewomen can pick up the history.  Monty Roberts, a famous horse trainer, can discern the equine-body history rapidly in the round pen and corral.

The Handler Peppy with Shiners Fannin Pepto

Peppy the Handler Alerting Shiney to Pick those Ears Up

The Hardin Way

It is important for humans and horses alike to respect the other.  It will insure a long and happy life for both.  The Hardin Way develops the horse and provides the human with a well-mannered companion.

Jimmie Hardin with Shiners Fannin Pepto

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Gorman Falls: Texas Rainforest

Gorman Falls near Bend, Texas (Jeff Lynch, Photographer)

Jeff Lynch is producing some of the most stunning photos of Texas landscapes.  This photograph of Gorman Falls, near Bend, Texas, is spectacular.  Please click on the link below for technical information about the photo and his biography.

I have camped many times at Gorman Falls.  I qualified for the First Class rank in the Boy Scouts by hiking from Bend, Texas, to Gorman Falls in the 1950s.  My grandmother hiked with me and pointed out wagon trails and campsites that she had traveled upon and cooked for cowboys, including her husband, J.W. Parks.  When we reached Gorman Falls, she picked watercress from about the stream to relish our lunch.  She lived in Bend, Texas, and worked as a telephone operator at the one-person switchboard.  The switchboard was in the living room where we played dominoes and listened to KWKH Shreveport, Louisiana, for country music and the Louisiana Hayride.

Gorman Falls existed as a respite from the summer heat, a cool habitat for sunburned people that managed cattle on horseback.

Texas Rainforest | Serious Amateur Photography is Jeff Lynch’s blog and website.

On May 10, 2010, the San Saba Commissioner’s Court met and received a report on the Colorado Bend State Park and Gorman Falls. The San Saba News & Star report is found at this link.  Other items included a discussion about the county scales at Hamrick’s Automotive.

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Going Green at Malabar Farm

Louis Bromfield of Pleasant Valley Malabar Farm, Ohio (Malabar Farm Website Photo)

Malabar Farm, Ohio, has sustainable outlook about their resources. Needs some emulation in the Trans-Mississippi West.

Malabar Farm is the farm name that Louis Bromfield gave his land.  Bromfield wrote, Pleasant Valley, 1943.

I do not like Wikipedia, but for fast information that needs backing-up or verification, it seems to be a first source.  Therefore, on sustainability, greenness or the LEED, this is what they have:  Leadership in Energy and Environment. I didn’t know what LEED was.

Our ranch is operated on the low-impact ranching principles.  In planning remodeling, we are considering LEED certification for the ranch house.  Our beef cattle operations in the future will include, after careful consideration, the Niman Beef production program.

Salt Creek, Flying Hat Ranch, Hannibal, Texas

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Survived by her Family and the Tamarin

Devra G. Kleiman (1942-2010) at National Zoo with Golden Lion Tamarins at National Zoo (NY Times Photo)

People Not Avatars

Examples, models and real-people, not avatars, present themselves as historic figures upon whose narratives we should integrate into our lives.  Dr. Devra G. Kleiman, who died this week, transformed zoo culture and assisted sentient beings in replenishing their species.  As Livy remarked:  “She is a model to emulate.”

Kleiman’s Procedures Relevant to American West

My blog, Sage to Meadow, focuses on the American West, mainly Trans-Mississippi West, and I worry everyday about the destruction and attenuation of not only sentient creatures, but also the sagebrush and native grassland.  Dr. Kleiman represents the scientific and emotionally best in us, Homo sapiens sapiens.  Her procedures–careful study, legal applications, conservation–can be applied anywhere in the biological environs of this planet, be it the Central Plains or the National Zoo.  Her work must be carried on by us and young men and women coming of age.  Writ small, it might be the feed you distribute occasionally to the mountain quail in Taos or establishing wildlife corridor for deer in Texas.  The caretaking of dogs and cats as Caralee Woods and Jimmy Henley in Kanab, Utah, reflect Kleiman’s outlook upon the wider biological kingdoms.  Writ large, it would be the slowing down or elimination of paved parking lots and strip malls: the culture of overconsumption.

Devra G. Keiman (1942-2010) Biologist Whose Work Transformed Zoos

Dr. Devra Kleiman worked successfully for decades to re-flourish the populations of the Gold Lion Tamarin and Giant Panda.  Her research and field crews impelled the culture of exhibition zoo-dom to restructure their entertainment and captivity culture “to concerted, scientifically informed conservation.”

Dr. Kleiman, in her work with the tamarin, persuaded zoos to give up title to the tamarin in return for the designation of  “a long-term loan from Brazil,” allowing zoo tamarins to be shuffled about the world for diverse breeding.  Her work became the paradigm for 100 breeding programs for endangered species, including the California condor and the black-footed ferret.

In 1972, when China presented the United States with two pandas, Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing, Dr. Kleiman and her research team begain to study the panda, holistically (social, sexual, gastronomic) in a 24-hour observation log.  Not until 2005, thirty-three years later, did the pandas produce offspring and only by artificial insemination.   The first offspring, a male by the name of Tai Shan, was later sent to China.

Please note the by whom she is survived in the quote,

Dr. Kleiman’s first marriage, to John Eisenberg, ended in divorce. Besides her husband, Mr. Yeomans, whom she married in 1988, she is survived by her mother, Molly Kleiman; a brother, Charles; three stepdaughters, Elise Edie, Joanna Domes and Lucy Yeomans; and four grandchildren.

She is also survived by the heirs of her scientific labors. When Dr. Kleiman began her work with golden lion tamarins, there were fewer than 200 alive anywhere; today, according to the National Zoo, about 1,500 live in the Brazilian wild.

Tai Shan, now almost 5, has lived since February at the Bifengxia Panda Base in China’s Sichuan Province.

I like that paragraph, “survived by the heirs of scientific labors.”  Give us legions of men and women like Dr. Kleiman.

Devra G. Kleiman, 67, Biologist Whose Work Transformed Zoos – Biography – NYTimes.com.

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Field Log 5/15/2010 (Wildlife Migration and High Field Fence)

North Erath County, Texas, Lat 32.43 N, Long -98.36 W, elev. 1,086 ft.  Turkey Creek Quad.

Talked by phone with Jimmie Hardin in Aubrey, Texas.  Shiney the colt is progressing along very well.  “He’s a boy and doing just fine,” she said.

Sweet Hija was inseminated on Thursday.  Will pick her up today.

Rain yesterday: 0.9 inches.

This morning at 5:10 a.m. I heard owl and turkey.  Scissor-tailed flycatchers call out vigorously just before daybreak.

Weather pattern unusual.  Finfrock at NBC-DFW says the dynamic is a cold front semi-stalled over Texas with jet stream winds blowing one way, surface winds the other.  Pattern has been with us for three days–since Wednesday.

Question the high fencing built by ranches.  What does this do to migratory patterns?  Celebrity Ranch has high fencing.  Factor this in for disturbance of wildlife migration.

High Field Fence by LE Fence Company, Waco, Texas

High field fence as pictured above can prevent migratory wildlife from crossing dangerous roads.  Use it to alter, without completely destroying, trails.  But, how?  Consult the corridor crew over in New Mexico.

In the nineteenth century, Glidden sold fence in San Antonio, Texas, with the advertisement for barbed wire: “Lighter than air, stronger than whiskey and cheaper than dirt!”  Cattle could be micro-managed within the barbed-wire pastures.

Do we have any significant corridors for wildlife migration in Texas that are specially designated?

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