Sunday, January 6, 2013

Went Straight to Work

Driving in toward the refuge, December 26th, we started second guessing our decision about coming here.

The county road left something to be desired.  This reminded me of the road going to Laguna Atascosa.  We could barely see the headquarters in the right hand side of the photo.

Anticipation grows as we never know what awaits you at new places!!!  Once we got backed in, we felt better.  There is a feeling of peace and serenity here.

The next morning, we checked in at headquarters.

and were put right to work.  No few days to get settled siree!  After meeting the few staff that were working (holidays), we were given a tour of the refuge by our supervisor, Ferris Calderon, who is the assistant to the assistant refuge manager, and is in training for management.

After lunch, Wallace helped Ferris move some shocks around on two of the Rangers while I worked on MSDS (material safety data sheets).  This work was done in the maintenance shop.

Since we arrived, it has been brutally cold and wet.  Hence, we have been doing inside stuff.  January 2nd, we worked all day separating sensitive documents, shredding those and recycling all the rest.  These files dated back to the early 70's.  We emptied six of those file boxes with many more to do.

January 3rd, was spent with our supervisor tearing down one of the acclimation pens.

You can barely see the structure.  There are six of them placed in different areas.  Prior to release, the prairie chickens are placed in these pens to assist in the transition from captivity to  life on the prairie.

That's me, my white hair blends right in to the sky.

This is the release pen that is put inside the acclimation pen.  The chicks need to grow before being released in the bigger area.

The tearing down of the pen took us three hours.  Ferris told us he thought it would have taken longer...hey, we don't mess around.

The afternoon was spent digging up prairie grasses to transplant in the grass garden by headquarters.

There is Indiangrass, little blue stem, big blue stem, switchgrass, and gamma grass planted in this garden.

Around headquarters, there are large Sycamore trees and huge live oak trees that were planted around the old farm building that used to be here.

New Year's Eve was spent with our fellow volunteers until the late hour of 10:00 pm.  Yeah, we think we are going to like it here.

Until next time...


  1. Nothing like hitting the ground running, huh? Looks like there's plenty to do there to keep y'all busy. Sounds like fun... except for the cold!

  2. It's been cold at Laguna too so you're not missing anything. They are probably not use to hard workers like you two!
    Looks like ya'll will have an interesting Winter.