Attracting Birds in the Texas Hill Country
A Guide to Land Stewardship
Natural History - Ornithology - Agriculture
8 x 10, 512 pp.
272 color photos. 12 Figures. Map.40 Tables. Bib. Index.
Pub Date: 02/03/2017
Myrna and David K. Langford Books on Working Lands
  flexbound (with flaps)
Price:        $39.95

978-1-62349-440-7

Published by Texas A&M University Press

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Attracting Birds in the Texas Hill Country

A Guide to Land Stewardship

W. Rufus Stephens and Jan Wrede

After years of working with landowners, land managers, naturalists, county officials, and others about wildlife management and land stewardship for birds in the Texas Hill Country, biologist Rufus Stephens and educator Jan Wrede teamed up to write a practical guidebook on how to improve habitat for birds on both small and large properties throughout the Hill Country.

Because each bird species has specific needs for cover, food, water, nesting, and rearing their young, the book is organized by Hill Country habitat types: wooded slopes and savannahs; grasslands; rivers and creeks; canyons, seeps, and springs; tanks and ponds; plus residential backyards. Each chapter contains an in-depth discussion of common problems and possible solutions for developing optimum habitat. The book showcases 107 species in their habitats with color photographs and a short descriptive account of how to know the bird and care for its habitat. Three additional chapters on predator control, deer management, and cedar management offer detailed information on these special issues that impact the presence of birds throughout the region.

As a comprehensive guide to habitat assessment, identification of birds and the habitats they use, plus stewardship practices that will benefit these birds, Attracting Birds in the Texas Hill Country offers landowners the ideal “how to manual” for writing an effective Wildlife Tax Valuation plan.

By helping readers recognize and evaluate habitat health and then use appropriate habitat enhancement practices, the authors hope to inspire and enable widespread and effective bird conservation in the Texas Hill Country. And as bird populations flourish, so do the populations of other wildlife.

W. RUFUS STEPHENS is the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s district leader for the 25-county Edwards Plateau Wildlife District. He lives in Boerne, Texas. JAN WREDE is former director of education and citizen science at the Cibolo Nature Center in Boerne and the author of Trees, Shrubs, and Vines of the Texas Hill Country. She lives in Boerne, Texas.

What Readers Are Saying:

“In Attracting Birds in the Texas Hill Country, Stephens and Wrede provide an excellent framework for landowners and managers to develop a comprehensive conservation plan using bird diversity and abundance as a measurement of success.  Each broad habitat type is included and then broken down to specific components with suggested practices to improve the quality of that habitat.  The land management techniques provided in this work can be applied to large and small tracks of land, including some that are applicable to the backyard.  The relative ease of observing birds make them an excellent group to use as an indicator of healthy habitats.  The comprehensive approach to land management included in the book allows for a variety of techniques that include grazing schemes as well as management of woody species, Ashe juniper in particular, and deer.  Every land manager will find useful information that is applicable to the specific habitats they manage, including measures of success.” — Mark Lockwood, conservation biologist, Texas Parks and Wildlife
 

Attracting Birds in the Texas Hill Country is an excellent and much-needed reference for landowners wishing for a variety of wildlife on their Texas Hill Country property, a great mix of conservation information, examples, and recommendations for landowners interested in learning the basics of habitat management. The chapters are well-organized by the habitat types found in the Hill Country and include special sections on issues such as deer and cedar management.Informative, pragmatic, and practical — a 'must have' for any Hill Country landowner. The book provides specific, practical actions that landowners can put into practice immediately.” — John S.C. Herron, Senior Director of Texas Conservation Programs at The Nature Conservancy

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