Playa Field Day to focus on grassland birds across the Panhandle

Video - Playa Field Day - KFDA

CANYON, Texas (KFDA) - A Playa Field Day with a focus on grassland birds will take place starting tomorrow.

The field day will start at 9:30 a.m. through 1:00 p.m. and will begin at Canyon and continue with a field trip around the Panhandle.

The first round of activities will take place at the Randall County AgriLife Extension Building Classroom, located at 200 Brown Road on the west edge of Canyon.

An opening presentation by Don Kahl, TPWD Region 1 Migratory Game Bird Specialist, will cover general information on playas and restoration possibilities through the Texas Playa Conservation Initiative.

Jamie Allen Assistant Manager of the High Plains National Wildlife Refuge Complex that includes Muleshoe, Grulla, and Buffalo Lake will give “An Overview of Grassland Birds” at 10:10 a.m.

The event will feature a presentation on grassland birds, a field tour with the opportunity to view waterfowl on selected playas, and a visit to Buffalo Lake National Wildlife Refuge near Umbarger.

There will be a presentation of general information about playa ecosystems, as well as playa restoration programs.

Playas are shallow, rain-fed wetlands throughout the Great Plains.

When containing surface water, playas provide a crucial habitat for many wildlife that depend on water to survive.

When dry, playas support several other Great Plains wildlife species because they are often the only natural lands in a region dominated by agricultural production.

Playas also recharge water to the underlying aquifer, filter nutrients and chemicals from the surrounding watershed, and add recreational value to the region.

The field day is sponsored by Ogallala Commons and its partners, the High Plains Water District, the Dixon Water Foundation and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Those attending are asked to wear clothing, footwear and a hat suitable for field tours.

Landowners, Master Naturalists, educators, and interested public are invited to attend.

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