SEGUIN – The Texas Riparian and Stream Ecosystem Education Program will host a workshop relating to the Geronimo and Alligator creeks watershed from 8 a.m.–4 p.m Sept. 17 in Seguin.
The no-cost educational program will focus on how streams function and the role of riparian vegetation in properly functioning stream systems. The morning session will be held at the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority’s River Annex, 905 Nolan St. The afternoon field portion will be held at the Seguin Outdoor Learning Center, located on the banks of Geronimo Creek, 1865 U.S. Highway 90 East.
“Riparian education programs like this lead to informed landowners and members of the public more inclined to use practices that improve the management of riparian and stream ecosystems,” said Nikki Dictson, Texas Water Resources Institute Extension program specialist and program coordinator. “Proper management, protection and restoration of these vital areas directly influence water quality and quantity, plus stabilizes stream banks and improves fish and aquatic habitats and communities.”
The program is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University. It is funded through a Clean Water Act grant provided by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
A riparian zone is the land area adjacent to the bank of a stream, creek, river or lake, Dictson explained. Geronimo Creek and its Alligator Creek tributary are located in Comal and Guadalupe counties and lie within the larger Guadalupe River Basin. The watershed has been the focus of water quality improvement planning efforts by stakeholders.
“Stakeholders recognize that successful implementation of the Geronimo and Alligator Creeks Watershed Protection Plan requires a variety of management strategies,” said Ward Ling, AgriLife Extension program specialist and watershed coordinator. “The riparian and stream workshop is an educational event supporting this effort.”
Dictson said the workshop will include classroom and field presentations by representatives from AgriLife Extension, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.
The afternoon will include a field visit to a Geronimo Creek site and additional presentations on riparian vegetation and management practices.
A sandwich box lunch is available for $10 cash at the door, but an RSVP is required to have an accurate count. Participants must RSVP by Sept. 10 by contacting Dictson at 979-458-5915 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or go online to http://naturalresourcestraining.tamu.edu/schedule.
Travis Franke, AgriLife Extension agent for Guadalupe County, said the workshop offers three continuing education units — two general and one integrated pest management — for Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide license holders. It also offers one unit from the Texas Water Resources Institute and six hours for Texas Nutrient Management Planning specialists. The program is acceptable for health, safety and welfare credit from the Texas Board of Architectural Examiners and may also be used for continuing education units for professional engineers.
For more information, contact Dictson or visit http://texasriparian.org.