June SWNP Program: Ray Rentschler – Living with Arlington’s Wildlife

Alligators, bobcats, coyotes, and feral hogs are some of the more exotic examples of the wide range of urban wildlife living in our community. For years, large numbers of wild animals have been trapped, euthanized, or relocated by animal shelters all over the United States. Despite years of these practices, human interactions with urban wildlife still take place today. Ray Rentschler, Field Operations Administrator at Animal Services, is tasked with helping us co-exist with Arlington’s wildlife. These animals are a common and important part of our ecosystem, benefiting the human population in numerous ways. Ray will give us some insights into our local wildlife and how to interact with it.

Tuesday, June 20, at 7 pm
Community Room, West Arlington Police Station
2060 W. Green Oaks Blvd, Arlington, TX   76013
Parking is available from Ron McAndrew Dr
FREE and open to the public.

May 20 Program: An evening at SWNP – Event is ON!

Plan on mud in some places on the paths.

We will begin the evening with a walk at 6 pm – Secret Features of SWNP, led by Jim Frisinger. Next up is time for exploring, visiting and enjoying light refreshments (furnished by Friends of SWNP).  We will end the evening with a Night Hike and Owl Prowl, led by inveterate invertebrate, amphibian, and reptile expert – Michael Smith. The hike will start just before dusk.

Evening begins at 6 pm, finishes around 9:45 pm.

Meeting at the Southwest Nature Preserve @ 5201 Bowman Springs Road, Arlington.

SWNP in April

Two great ways to experience SWNP in April:

April 15: 1 to 4 pm, City Nature Challenge Texas at SWNP.

April 18: 7 pm, April Program – The Woodbine is Good for You and Texas (Geology of SWNP – meeting at West Arlington Police Service Station)

The Great Backyard Bird Count at SWNP


Great Backyard Bird Count – 10th Anniversary at SWNP

On Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017 we again put our own birders’ spin on the the Great Backyard Birdcount at the Southwest Nature Preserve in Arlington, calling it “The Big Sit.”  We fanned out in small teams to 4 different habitats within the preserve.  Rather than roam, each team was stationary, blending into the landscape while waiting for the birds to show.

2017 Results:  45 bird species (260 birds total) seen by 6 birders.  Thanks to everyone who participated…and special thanks to Jim Frisinger for organizing GBBC 2017!

Several records were set for the 10th Anniversary count; here’s Jim’s report summary:

The tally for the 10th year of our count is still the most diverse ever – 45 species (besting 2014’s 41 species) and 260 birds (also a record, besting the 241 counted in 2014).
Three species not previously appearing in the February bird count were broad-wing hawk, hairy woodpecker and road runners.
Record counts were recorded for gadwalls, grebes, white-winged doves, blue jays, Carolina chickadees, red-bellied woodpeckers, mockingbirds, starlings, cedar waxwings and Northern cardinals.
Take a bow.

For a history of Great Backyard Bird Count data, beginning in 2007, see:  v.3 FINAL GBBC 2007-2017.

Great Backyard Bird Count is a nation-wide citizen science event sponsored annually by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society. For more information, visit their website: The Great Backyard Bird Count

Feb. 21 Program: A Photographic look at Southwest Nature Preserve


Bob Brennan will take us on a tour of the Preserve as he has seen it through camera lenses during the past 10 years. He will also discuss equipment and techniques for capturing the flora and fauna at SWNP. Bob has been photographing the Preserve since 2007, and he maintains a web site at https://bobbrennan.smugmug.com/ that includes all his works at SWNP.


Bob Brennan, Arlington, TX, is an award winning photographer specializing in nature and event(s) photography. He has been featured in Arlington Today magazine and Arli ngton Parks and Recreation – Naturally Fun magazine. He has photographed Arlington Area Street Rods annual car show benefiting Mission Arlington and is the official photographer for Art on The Greene annual fine art festival and for the South Street Art Festival.  During the past 7 years Bob has journeyed to photograph the 93 parks of the city of Arlington TX; he has done 76 of the 93 listed city parks. Bob makes all his parks photographs available ‘free gratis’ to the Parks and Recreation Dept and other city departments of Arlington, TX as well as to event organizers for whom he does event photography

Tuesday, February 21, at 7 pm
Community Room, West Arlington Police Station
2060 W. Green Oaks Blvd, Arlington, TX   76013
Parking is available from Ron McAndrew Dr
FREE and open to the public.