Our 2018 Winter Birding Census will be held on Saturday & Sunday, the 3rd & 4th of February, 2018. Participants can bird either morning they wish. If you are interested in joining in, please contact Amy Hardy, ORWMA Birding Chairperson, at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.
The Birding Census will conclude with a lunch at the Hardy home on Sunday, Feb 4th.
We hope everyone will consider participating! Bird counts are generally done at daybreak when the birds are most active. Simply walk your property and use the attached bird list to write down how many you see of each species. Turn your completed list(s) in to Amy via email or take them to the lunch on Sunday, the 4th. Grab a cup of coffee, bottle of water, your binoculars & cameras and hit the fields and woods of Oakridge Ranch.
Fall has come to Oakridge Ranch! What a beautiful time of year!
But even better is the fact that Fall & Winter brings a beautiful bird to our area, the American Bald Eagle. Thank you, Maggie Lynch, for this picture! So neighbors, keep your cameras ready. You never know what you’ll see or what is seeking a safe haven here at Oakridge Ranch. Click on the picture to enlarge it and check out this amazing bird of prey.
Below is a note from Jim Trickett regarding our Individual Landowners’ Observation data. Also attached is the required Landowner Individual August Census form…….or you can use Jim’s shortened version attached above.
“The Observation data is needed to finish the survey. It needs to be turned in as soon as possible [Sept. 1st]. The survey sheets you have should be tallied and that data passed along to me. The sheets can be placed in my mailbox – 1278 Oakridge Road – the green address sign is close to the mailbox, but not on it.
If you would prefer, I will accept the data you have added up and averaged at bottom of the sheet. Below is a form you can fill in the data and email by return email to email@example.com. So either bring the sheets to my mailbox or send back the summarized data sheet below [via email].
With this data, I think I can furnish the data sheet for Oakridge [to Texas Parks & Wildlife Department biologists as required for our MLD].”
Jim Trickett Oakridge Ranch MLD August Whitetail Census Facilitator
The Court ordered burn ban (see below) was lifted for Colorado County on August 30, 2017. OVFD will still prefer you ask for assistance and back-up when burning your brush piles. You are required to call in your brush burning to the administrative line for Colorado County Sheriff’s Office before you burn. Be careful out there! There is still loads of dry grasses & leaves falling from the trees that are totally dry.
Attached is the individual landowner’s deer census form for August 2017 for your immediate use should you not have received it before this post.
All Oakridge Ranch property owners are required to complete this form and submit it as part of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Managed Land for Deer (MLD) program for the Ranch. These are sent to our county Wildlife Biologists to use for management of our deer herd for the upcoming season.
Please submit your completed form to Jim Trickett at the address at the bottom of the attached form by Sept 1st.
We appreciate your cooperation and participation in your MLD!
Greater Roadrunner, July 2017, Photo by B.LaVergne
The Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) is native to the desert southwest portion of the U.S., also found in most states of the southwest. These birds are year-round natives of Texas, including the Oak Prairie Region here at Oakridge Ranch. Several birds have been seen for the last few years in our area and we have had a nesting pair for the last 4 years.
These birds are much more interesting than the one made famous in the Warner Brothers cartoon series. Adult birds are 20-24 inches long with a large up-turned tail and long beak and mottled black/brown & white feathering throughout its body that appears to look like stripes. These birds have long legs with 4 toes on each foot, two pointing forward & two pointing back. You’ll rarely see a Roadrunner in flight for more than a few feet because it can’t get the lift it needs due to its size. However, Roadrunners have been clocked at 12 to 17 miles per hour.
Roadrunners mate for life and have 2 or 3 clutches per year as habitat conditions and food availability allow. A hen will usually lay 2 to 12 eggs in one clutch, but records show up to 20 eggs have been laid in rare clutches. Their nest is built by the female 2 to 12 feet off the ground with materials supplied by both the male and female. Interesting thing is the male sits on the nest at night since the female’s body temperature drops too low to keep the eggs warm enough. Young birds hatch out at about 20 days and are taken care of by both parents. The baby Roadrunners will leave the nest at 18 to 21 days, but will continue to be fed & cared for by the parents until day 30 to 40 when they go out on their own. Greater Roadrunners’ life span is approximately 8 years.
Greater Roadrunners are omnivores. Their diet is varied and includes insects, various plants & berries, lizards, small birds such as sparrows & hummingbirds. And they are fast enough to take on rattlesnakes for dinner! These beautiful birds do drop their activities by approximately 50% during the heat of the day.
Stay alert when you’re on the roads in and around Oakridge and you just might catch a glimpse of the amazing birds.
Below is a link for more information on breeding of Roadrunners in Texas: http://txtbba.tamu.edu/species-accounts/greater-roadrunner/
Check out this next link for a map of their locations in the U.S.: http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/greater-roadrunner
We conduct our annual deer survey during the month of August. We encourage all who are interested in the road survey we do to come on out. Surveys will begin and end at Jim Trickett’s house LOCATED AT 1278 Oakridge Rd. You may bring a beverage of your choice.
Saturday, Aug 12 Gather at 7:15PM, Start at 8:00PM Visit while trucks are out if not counting
Saturday, Aug 19 (Taylor Reunion) Come on out and visit
Friday, Aug 25 Gather at 7:15PM, Start at 8:00PM Visit while trucks are out if not counting
Your personal survey results should be turned in to Jim Trickett no later than September 1st.
ANNUAL PERMIT MEETING
Saturday, September 23, 9:00AM at the Community Center
ORWMA Dues $20 / Deer Hunt Participation Fee $20
There are several new regulations that will impact hunters at Oakridge that will be discussed at this meeting
Due to a change in TPWD regulations ORWMA will be responsible for printing the doe permits and will have them at this meeting
A list of deer checkers with their contact information will be provided at the meeting.
If you don’t attend this meeting and pickup your permits then they will be available by appointment only
September 30, 2017 to February 28, 2018
Does may be taken with a MLD permit only
Does may be harvested with any legal means (firearm, bow, crossbow, muzzle loader etc.) during this season.
All does must be checked in with an ORWMA deer checker or the TPWD biologist. The deer must be field dressed when checked in.
You will receive a replacement permit each time you check in a doe.
The TPWD seasons, restrictions, and bag limits for Colorado County apply. For example: September 30 – November 3 is Archery Only Season, Bucks may only be harvested with archery equipment. Youth, General, and Muzzleloader seasons and restrictions all apply to buck harvest.
All bucks must be checked in with an ORWMA deer checker or the TPWD biologist. The deer must be field dressed when checked in.
Bucks are tagged with a tag from your hunting license.
If you have any questions feel free to give me a call.
Whitetail Deer Chairman