Riparian and stream ecosystem workshop set for Nov. 21 in College Station

COLLEGE STATION–The Texas Riparian and Stream Ecosystem Education Program will host a workshop from 8 a.m.-4 p.m Nov. 21 in College Station for area residents interested in land and water stewardship in the Carters and Burton creeks watershed.

The program will concentrate on the nature and function of stream and riparian zones, as well as the direct economic impacts and benefits from maintaining healthy zones, coordinators said.

A riparin will be held Nov. 21 in College Station (Texas A&M  AgriLife Extension Sewrvice photo)

A Texas Riparian and Stream Ecosystem Education Program workshop will be presented  Nov. 21 in Bryan/College Station. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo)

The morning session will be held at the College Station Wastewater Treatment facility, 2200 N. Forest Parkway, east of Highway 6. The afternoon session will be held at Carters Creek near the Brazos Center, 3232 Briarcrest Drive, Bryan.

Nikki Dictson, Texas Water Resources Institute Extension program specialist and coordinator, said the program will include presentations on riparian and watershed management principles, water quality, riparian vegetation, hindrances to healthy riparian areas, management practices and local resources.

“We hope that landowners and managers will incorporate riparian area management into their land stewardship activities and goals,” Dictson said.

Lucas Gregory, Texas Water Resources Institute project manager, said Brazos County is home to the Carters and Burton creeks watershed.

“Burton Creek is a tributary to Carters Creek, and practically all of the Burton Creek watershed area is urbanized,” Gregory said. “The watershed covers about 57 square miles before the creeks empty into the Navasota River and then the Brazos River.”

He said the creeks are used for fishing and other types of recreation, and the watershed provides valuable habitat for many types of fish, aquatic plants and animals.

“Land use is heavily urbanized in the western portion of the Carters and Burton creeks watershed as Bryan and College Station encompass much of the watershed,” Gregory said. “As you move east, the watershed becomes more rural.”

He noted that the Texas Water Resources Institute, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and other stakeholders have been working on a total daily maximum load implementation plan to encourage land and water stewardship in the watershed.

“The goal is for local stakeholders to better understand riparian and watershed processes and the benefits of healthy riparian areas, and the tools that can be employed to prevent and/or resolve degradation and improve water quality,” Gregory said.

At the conclusion of the training, participants will receive a certificate of completion and appropriate continuing education unit certificates.

The program is free, but lunch will be provided for $10 cash at the door — or attendees may bring their own. The program includes a lunchtime presentation.

Those who wish to order lunch must RSVP by Nov. 18 to Dictson at 979-458-5915 or n-dictson@tamu.edu, or go online to htttp://texasriparian.org/trainings/upcoming-training-locations/.

The workshop offers seven types of continuing education units including three units— two general and one integrated pest management — for Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide license holders. It offers one unit from the Texas Water Resources Institute, six hours for Texas Nutrient Management Planning specialists, six hours from the Texas Forestry Association, and 4.5 hours from the Society of American Foresters. 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.

The program is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research,  AgriLife Extension 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.

For more information, contact Dictson or visit http://texasriparian.org.

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