The Big Thicket Association was founded in 1964, and is dedicated to conservation of The Big Thicket of Southeast Texas.
Art in the Park, Temporary Exhibit of Student Art from across TexasBig Thicket National Preserve is proud to announce the installation of a new temporary art exhibit in the park’s visitor center. Entitled “All the Little Things,” this art installation, completed in partnership with the International Fiber Collaborative, encouraged students throughout Texas to create artwork highlighting the vast array of plants and animals found in the Big Thicket. Each of the more than 70 pieces represents the students’ unique perspectives on the diversity of the natural environment throughout this region. More than 975 students from 20 different Texas schools created art for this exhibit. This exhibition will be on display until April 30, 2018. “We invite visitors to see the preserve in a new way,” stated Big Thicket National Preserve Superintendent Wayne Prokopetz. “Parks are much more than hiking destinations. They can be places of inspiration, rejuvenation, and research.” Prokopetz continued, “Parks and outdoors spaces have inspired art since the beginning of time.” Big Thicket National Preserve’s involvement in this project is supported through a grant from the Western National Parks Association. A long-term park partner, the Western National Parks Association supports park store operations and educational programming in more than 60 units of the National Park Service, across the western and central United States. www.wnpa.org Student artists for the following schools participated in this exhibit: Calvert ISD, Snyder Elementary School, Wilkerson Intermediate School, Fehl-Price Elementary School, Jasper Junior High School, Stephens Elementary School, Creighton Elementary School, Evadale ISD, Spring Creek Elementary School, The Woodlands High School, Carroll Academy, Huntsville High School, Centerville High School, Lincoln Junior High School, Lone Star elementary School, New Coney Middle School, Mitchell Intermediate School, Conroe High School, Sam Houston Elementary School, Central Middle School, Bridge City Middle School, Centerville Elementary School, and Newton Middle School. The International Fiber Collaborative (IFC) was formed to create deeper learning experiences through art, collaboration, and cross-curricular-themed programming for individuals and their communities. Over 5,300 pieces of art have been displayed at 134 venues. So far, they have received submissions in the form of textile art accompanied by essays, from about 15,000 individuals residing in 17 countries, 46 states and 363 communities. For more information on IFC projects, please go to their website http://ifcprojects.com. Big Thicket National Preserve is located in Southeast Texas, near the city of Beaumont and 75 miles northeast of Houston. The preserve consists of nine land units and six water corridors encompassing more than 113,000 acres. The Big Thicket, often referred to as a “biological crossroads,” is a transition zone between four distinct vegetation types – the moist eastern hardwood forest, the southwestern desert, the southeastern swamp, and the central prairies. Species from all of these different vegetation types come together in the thicket, exhibiting a variety of vegetation and wildlife that has received global interest. For general information about Big Thicket National Preserve, visit www.nps.gov/bith or call the preserve visitor center at 409-951-6700. Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/BigThicketNPS, Twitter www.twitter.com/BigThicketNPS, and Instagram www.instagram.com/BigThicketNPS. www.nps.gov About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.
Big Thicket National Preserve Announces Fur-Bearer Trapping Season and Permitting Process KOUNTZE, Texas, October 23, 2017 – Superintendent Wayne Prokopetz announced today that Big Thicket National Preserve will be issuing 21 fur-bearer trapping permits for the 2017-18 State of Texas fur-bearer trapping season (December 1, 2017- January 31, 2018). Fur-bearing animals include the following: badger, beaver, fox, mink, muskrat, nutria, opossum, otter, raccoon, ring-tailed cat, skunk and civet cat (spotted skunk). Limited permits will be available for designated trapping areas: Beaumont Unit - 4, Jack Gore Baygall Unit - 7, Lance Rosier Unit - 7, and Neches Bottom Unit – 3. Please note the following are not considered fur-bearing animals: Coyotes, Bobcats, and Feral Hogs Fur-bearer trapping permits will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis from November 1, 2017, until November 30, 2017, at the preserve headquarters. The headquarters building is located adjacent to the preserve visitor center, 8 miles north of Kountze at the intersection of FM 420 and Highway 69, and is open Monday-Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm. Permits will be issued by appointment only. Appointments may be made by telephone at (409) 951-6823. Everyone who traps fur-bearing animals in Big Thicket National Preserve must have a Big Thicket fur-bearer trapping permit. All trappers wishing to trap fur-bearing animals must apply in person and may trap in only one unit. Parents or guardians, please be advised that children must be present to obtain their own fur-bearer trapping permit. You must show your current Texas Trapping License to obtain a Big Thicket fur-bearer trapping permit. Trappers must show the locations of their trap-lines on a map provided by the preserve. Be advised that trappers who failed to return their harvest cards for the 2016/2017 season will not be eligible to trap fur-bearing animals in Big Thicket National Preserve during the 2017/18 fur-bearer trapping season. The deadline for returning the fur-bearer trapping harvest cards after the 2017/2018 season will be April 1, 2018. There will be no grace period. Big Thicket National Preserve is located in southeast Texas, near the city Beaumont, and 75 miles northeast of Houston. The preserve consists of nine land units and six water corridors encompassing more than 113,000 acres. The Big Thicket, often referred to as a "biological crossroads," is a transition zone between four distinct vegetation types – the moist eastern hardwood forest, the southwestern desert, the southeastern swamp, and the central prairies. Species from all of these different vegetation types come together in the thicket, exhibiting a variety of vegetation and wildlife that has received national interest. For general information about Big Thicket National Preserve, visit www.nps.gov/bith or call the preserve visitor center at 409-951-6700. Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/BigThicketNPS, Twitter www.twitter.com/BigThicketNPS, and Instagram www.instagram.com/BigThicketNPS. www.nps.gov About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 409 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.
as shared by Big Thicket Association Houston, Focus City in the Every Kid in a Park Program, Receives Field Trip Grant from the National Park Foundation Houston, Texas (October 6, 2017) – Big Thicket National Preserve and the City of Houston, Texas were selected to receive a 2017 field trip grant from the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America's national parks. Conservation and education groups from across the Houston area have come together to provide field trip opportunities to over 10,000 fourth grade students during this academic school year. This grant, part of the Foundation's Open OutDoors for Kids program, supports Every Kid in a Park. Beyond making field trips possible, the Every Kid in a Park Focus City program raises local community awareness about the importance of connecting kids to the outdoors. "I can still remember the excitement of exploring my first national park as a kid and it made me want to discover more," said National Park Foundation President Will Shafroth. "I'm thrilled that our National Park Foundation grants make it possible for hundreds of thousands of kids to experience the wonder of parks for the first time, sparking a lifelong love for national parks." Over a dozen Houston-based organizations have come together in support of this project. Through this partnership, teachers have access to a comprehensive, online resource for nature-based field trips in the region, and Title 1 Schools in districts throughout the Houston area can receive reimbursement for bus transportation for their fourth grade classes to experience these amazing outdoor spaces. For more information, educators may visit http://www.hereinhouston.org/ekiphouston. ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America's national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and INSPIRE the next generation of park stewards. In 2016, commemorating the National Park Service's 100th anniversary, the Foundation launched The Centennial Campaign for America's National Parks, a comprehensive fundraising campaign to strengthen and enhance the future of these national treasures for the next hundred years. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.
... as shared by Big Thicket National Preserve, National Park Service Big Thicket National Preserve Hunting Permit Registration Opens September 1, 2017 KOUNTZE, Texas, July 31, 2017 - Big Thicket National Preserve Superintendent Wayne Prokopetz announced today that the preserve will start issuing this seasons free hunting permits on Friday, September 1, 2017. Available 2017/2018 permits ill be issued until February 28, 2016. Permits will be issued at the preserve visitor center from 9 am until 5 pm daiily. The visitor center is located 8 miles north of Kountze at the intersection of US 69 and FM 420 at 61002 FM 420. Big Thicket hunting permits allow hunters to take white-tailed deer, squirrel, rabbit, feral hog, and waterfowl, except those for the new Lake Bayou Hunting Unit, which is a waterfowl-only area. The preserve observes the state of Texas hunting seasons from October 1, 2017, until January 1, 2018. Additional feral hogs may be taken during the extended hog-only season, which runs from January 2, 2018 until February 28, 2018. Waterfowl hunting at Lake Bayou will also remain open until February 28, 2018. Everyone who hunts in Big Thicket National Preserve must have a Big Thicket hunting permit. You must show your current Texas Hunting License to obtain a Big Thicket hunting permit. All hunters must apply in person and may hunt in only one unit. Starting in the 2016/2017 season, parents or guardians will no longer be able to get permits for their children. All hunters must be present to get a permit. Be advised that hunters who failed to return their harvest cards for the 2016/2017 season will not be eligible to hunt in Big Thicket National Preserve during the 2017/2018 hunting season. The deadline for returning hunter harvest cards after the 2017/2018 season will be April 1, 2018. There will be no grace period. The number of permits issued for each hunting unit varies based on the size of the unit an wildlife management goals for that unit. The number of permits issued per unit has not changed from last season, except for the addition of the Lake Bayou Hunting Unit, near Beaumont, Texas. The following numbers of permits, by hunting unit, are available: Beaumont Unit - 200 Beech Creek Unit - 150 Big Sandy Creek Unit - 400 Jack Gore Baygall Unit - 400 Lance Rosier Unit - 900 Neches Bottom Unit - 150 Lake Bayou Unit - 50 Big Thicket National Preserve is located in southeast Texas, near the city Beaumont and 75 miles northeast of Houston. The preserve consists of nine land units and six water corridors encompassing more than 113,000 acres. The Big Thicket, often referred to as a "biological crossroads," is a transition zone between four distinct vegetation types - the moist eastern hardwood forest, the southwestern desert, the southeastern swamp, and the central prairies. Species from all of these different vegetation types come together in the thicket, exhibiting a variety of vegetation and wildlife that has received national interest. For general information about Big Thicket National Preserve, visit www.nps.gov/bith or call the preserve visitor center at 409-951-6700. Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/BigThicketNPS, Twitter www.twitter.com/BigThicketNPS, and Instagram www.instagram.com/BigThicketNPS. .
The Big Thicket National Preserve Visitor Center has partnered with Western National Parks Association to establish a Little Free Library in the parking lot of the park visitor center. What is The Little Free Library movement? It strives to make free books available to everyone throughout every community. It is a nonprofit organization that inspires a love of reading, builds community, and sparks creativity by fostering neighborhood book exchanges around the world. Everyone is encouraged to take a book and read at their leisure. "We hope that this free book exchange will encourage visitors to use to park in new ways. There are many river banks, picnic areas, and other peaceful places around the park for everyone to use. Grab a book and discover new things in your national park," stated Big Thicket National Preserve Superintendent Wayne Prokopetz. More information on Little Free Libraries ... Millions of books are exchanged each year to readers of all ages and backgrounds. In 2009 McGill-Franzen & Allington's research indicates that when children have access to books, especially at home increases reading achievement. But according to the U.S. Departmentt of Education, up to 61 percent of low-income families do not have any books for their kids at home. Visit the website of Little Free Library for more information. Big Thicket National Preserve Visitor Center 6102 FM 420 Road Kountze, Texas 409-951-6700 www.nps.gov/bith Facebook: www.facebook.com/BigThicketNPS Twitter: www.twitter.com/BigThicketNPS Instagram: wwwinstagram.com/BigThicketNPS
Big Thicket National Preserve Centennial Volunteer Program "This is a great opportunity for community members to help care for their national preserve," stated Big Thicket National Preserve Superintendent Wayne Prokopetz. Each year over 110,000 visitors explore the trails and day-use areas throughout the Big Thicket. In recognition of the 100th anniversary of the creation of the National Park Service, the staff at Big Thicket National Preserve is inviting individuals and community groups to assist in a year-long stewardship effort to take pride in and help maintain certain areas of the preserve by adopting trails, day-use areas, and other access points During this year, they will be asked to visit their adopted site a few times and complete some basic trash clean-up and minor maintenance tasks. During this centennial year, Bit Thicket National Preserve will be encouraging our neighbors and visitors to explore, support, and connect with the preserve by participating in a numer of special centennial programs, from a photo contest to planting trees. Learn more about how you can get involved in this year-long celebration at NPS.gov. For more information about adopting sites in the preserve, please visit our website or contact Jeremy Williams at 409-951-6703. Big Thicket National Preserve National Park Service U.S. Department of Interior 6044 FM 420 Kountze, Texas 77625 409-951-6700 - Visitor Information 409-951-6800 - Headquarters Office www.nps.gov/bith @BigThicketNPS (Facebook, Twitter & Instagram)
Share Your Thicket – Centennial Photo Contest As part of the National Park Service’s Centennial celebration, Big Ticket National Preserve invites visitors to explore the preserve and share their photos in a year-long photo contest starting August 2015. Submit photos via Instagram for entry into the contest using the hashtag #BigTicketPhotoContest. Monthly winners will be chosen in three categories and displayed in our park visitor center. An overall winner will be chosen in the fall of 2016 and displayed in the visitor center for one year. Each month photos of visitors exploring the preserve and images that capture its beauty will be highlighted. Winners will be chosen monthly by a panel of Big Ticket National Preserve staf and volunteers. All ages are welcomed and encouraged to have fun while photographing the preserve. Additional information about this photo contest and how to participate can be found on the preserve website at www.nps.gov/bith. During this centennial year, Big Ticket National Preserve will be encouraging our neighbors and visitors to explore, support, and connect with the preserve by participating in a number of special centennial programs. Learn more about how you can get involved in this year-long celebration on our website. The National Park Service will celebrate its centennial in 2016 and is using this opportunity to invite a new generation of Americans, and those who already know and love the parks, to discover what national parks and other public lands mean to them through the Find Your Park campaign. To learn more or get involved, visit FindYourPark.com.
International Migratory Bird Day at Big Thicket National Preserve Photo: courtesy of Big Thick National Preserve If you missed the celebration this year, the International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) is celebrated on the second Saturday of May every year. As shared by the Big Thicket National Preserve and how they celebrated IMBD. KOUNTZE, Texas, May 12, 2016– Big Thicket National Preserve invites the public to join us in celebrating birds on May 14, International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) 2016. The preserve joins more than 700 other sites throughout North, Central, and South America who are promoting festivals, educational programs, and conservation activities related to birds. Staff will be offering two guided bird walks in Big Thicket National Preserve on May 14, on the Sundew Trail and the Pitcher Plant Trail. Both walks begin at 8 am. Participants can meet at either trailhead, or meet at the visitor center at 7:30 am and convoy to each trailhead. Everyone is encouraged to bring water, binoculars, and insect repellent. There will also be birding-themed games and activities for kids at the visitor center, beginning at 10 am. Kids should be prepared for some outdoor activities, including a short bird walk. For more information on these events, please call the visitor center at 409-951-6700. Staff can also recommend good birdwatching areas nearby for those who wish to go birdwatching on their own. Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/BigThicketNPS, Twitter www.twitter.com/BigThicketNPS, and Instagram www.instagram.com/BigThicketNPS. While in reality every day is bird day, IMBD is traditionally celebrated in the U.S. and Canada on the second Saturday in May. Ultimately, the goals of IMBD are to connect people to nature through birds and to help people understand the importance of conserving birds and bird habitat. Now in its 26th year, IMBD is coordinated by Environment for the Americas, which provides bilingual educational materials and information about birds and bird conservation throughout the Americas. Their programs inspire children and adults to get outdoors, learn about birds, and take part in their conservation. To learn more about migratory bird habitats, download IMBD educational and promotional materials in Spanish and English, and search for activities planned in your area, visit http://www.migratorybirdday.org/. Through many events held throughout the Americas, IMBD celebrations explore how birds have inspired some of the most significant environmental conservation actions. For generations, migratory birds have connected communities across continents, providing unique opportunities for international collaboration and inspiring people to improve conditions for birds, all wildlife, and for ourselves. National and international cooperation is an essential step toward safeguarding the world’s migratory birds, whose long-distance flights often cross political borders, exposing them to widely varying conservation philosophies and laws. “This year’s International Migratory Bird Day is a celebration of the capacity of individuals to compel world leaders to prioritize migratory bird conservation,” says Dr. Susan Bonfield, Executive Director of Environment for the Americas. “Collaboration and a commitment to actions that protect migratory birds along their entire flyways, and throughout their lifecycles, are crucial to safeguarding migratory populations.” The Migratory Bird Treaty Act, enacted in 1916, has protected nearly all migratory bird species in the U.S. and Canada for the last century. By working together towards this common cause, we hope to initiate another century of bird conservation. www.nps.gov About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 409 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov. ================================== Big Thicket National Preserve National Park Service U.S. Department of Interior 6044 FM 420 Kountze, Texas 77625 409-951-6700 - Visitor Information 409-951-6800 - Headquarters Office www.nps.gov/bith @BigThicketNPS (Facebook, Twitter & Instagram)
Big Thicket National Preserve Participates in Operation Dry Water KOUNTZE, Texas, March 16, 2017– During the weekend of June 30 thru July 2, 2017 Visitor and Resource Protection (VRP) staff at Big Thicket National Preserve will be partnering with the US Coast Guard out of Station Sabine Pass, to engage in Operation Dry Water (ODW), a nationwide law enforcement effort that targets boating under the influence awareness and enforcement. The mission of ODW is to reduce the number of alcohol-related accidents and fatalities through increased recreational boater awareness and by fostering a stronger and more visible deterrent to alcohol use on the water.
Sail aboard the "Ivory Bill" to learn about the unique ecosystems along the Neches River with their dense bottomland forests of hardwoods and pine trees. The area is home to more than 200 tree species, 47 mammals, 300 birds and many reptiles and amphibians. Date: Present to November 21, 2015 Tine: Saturday tours, 10 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Fee: $15.00 per person, $10.00 children 12 and under, $10.00 Seniors (65+ years), Free Children 3 and under Contact: 409-651-5326 for reservations Venue: Neches River Website: http://www.nechesriveradventures.org/ The Public and Private Tours Kathryn and Bruce Walker have developed have made us one of the most sought afer events for those coming to Beaumont.