Are you familiar with the program the Preserve at Walnut Springs HOA is currently participating in through the Texas Parks and Wildlife Division? The Land Incentive Program is matching HOA funding for onsite wildlife and habitat improvement projects.
Most of the work is taking place on the South side of the ranch. Below are a few goals of this impressive project:
1. to protect two spring sites (Cuellar Spring and Walnut Springs) from degradation,
2. to improve the diversity of the mixed oak-juniper plant communities in the adjacent canyons and riparian zones, and
3. to promote the establishment of native herbaceous vegetation. The ultimate goal is to manage for habitats that are appealing to a diversity of native wildlife species including the endangered golden-cheeked warbler, while also enhancing water infiltration and groundwater recharge.
These goals will be accomplished by implementing the following management practices:
1. constructing fences to exclude feral hogs and livestock from the two spring sites and their associated riparian areas,
2. reducing the cover of baccharis within the lower riparian zone of Cuellar Spring where the baccharis has become dense and is competing with native grasses, desirable shrubs, and herbaceous plants, and
3. reducing the cover of small 'second growth' Ashe juniper growing in the woodland canopy in the head canyons associated with both springs.
(Photo By: Rusty Yates)