24 March, 2024

Krigia (small, yellow dandelion-like flowers) ID guide--in progress

I've started working on an ID guide for Texas Krigia. It's a work in progress as I'm not sure about some of the supposedly identifying characteristics in the literature. I need good pics and some opinions from other people.

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/15s7i1EBkSZFCJFcI_p2yccDCY2eRi1XGosLAhZEAH6w/edit?usp=sharing

Krigia are small, yellow dandelion-like flowers that bloom and fruit during late March-April in Texas.

Must have photos of:

  • Entire plant, showing where flowering stems emerge from (the base or a branch)
  • Fruiting head: viewed from top, side, and bottom
  • Fruit (may need to dissect if it's not open)


Posted on 24 March, 2024 22:23 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 7 comments | Leave a comment

11 February, 2024

The year of the Anemone (windflowers)?

Due to the wetter weather across parts of Texas, this late winter/early spring may shape up to be a really good Anemone year.

Already, we've got:
--a new iNat county record
--some plants that look "different"--outside the range of typical appearances
--and the the three species on top of Lover's Leap in Junction, TX have already been documented--all three in bloom. I'll be going there this coming weekend to check them out--this is the only known location where three species can be found in sympatry (although separated a bit by microclimate).

Guide to TX Anemones:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1llZApbJ29F2h9w7EYA7D3B-cDAcQra0GC01zWMCvVc8



@codystricker, @bacchusrock, @joshua_tx, @ronstephens, @stelluti, @currenfrasch, @kayakqueen
Posted on 11 February, 2024 02:45 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 4 comments | Leave a comment

10 February, 2024

It's Arabideae time in Texas!

Species of the Tribe Arabideae are among the first flowers to bloom (January--March or early April). Being small and inconspicuous, they are often overlooked. Observations of Texas Arabideae are here. These species have been lumped and split, taxonomically; formerly, all were in the genus Draba.

Because of its diminutive size, Tomostima reptans is the most challenging (and most exciting) to find. It appears to be most likely seen in sandy, exposed soil with minimum competing vegetation. It's general distribution is estimated by this BONAP map, but this is incomplete.

T. reptans pictured below:

The following characteristics vary, so documenting multiple characteristics will confirm the ID. Features to capture include:

  • side view of mature fruits (pods)
  • side view of flowering stem (pedicel) from top to bottom (with hairs in focus)
  • view of leaves

Also, young plants may be challenging or impossible to identify.

👉 Key and illustrated identification guide*

 
*There is also a yellow-flowered species in Jeff Davis county (Trans-Pecos) which isn't in the guide: Draba standleyi
 


Posted on 10 February, 2024 23:12 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 49 comments | Leave a comment

16 December, 2023

2024 bioblitz planning

If anyone is already planning events for 2024, please let me know and I'll compile them here.

This Google map documents past, planned, and potential bioblitz locations:


Date(s) to avoid:

  • Apr 26-29: City Nature Challenge
  • Oct 24-27: Texas Master Naturalist conference

Events in the queue (some in planning stages):

Events in DFW area for May, June, and July:

TPWD Texas Nature Trackers is planning several public bioblitz events - Facebook

  • Apr 6: Post Oak Preserve in southeast Dallas
  • 7-9 June: Caddo Lake WMA (kayak or canoe encouraged)
  • Early October: Devil's River SNA in Val Verde County (limited)

@amzapp, @annikaml, @bacchusrock, @baxter-slye, @bosqueaaron, @brentano, @butterflies4fun, @cameralenswrangler, @centratex, @chasingchickens, @currenfrasch, @connlindajo, @dillon_kyle, @eaneubauer, @elytrid, @franpfer, @gcwarbler, @gwaithir, @ldennis, @immortalwhat, @inhat83, @isaaceastland, @jcochran706, @jeff_back, @jeffmci9, @jgw_atx, @joshua_tx, @k8thegr8, @knightericm, @kimberlietx, @lorimalloy, @lovebirder, @lulubelle, @mammelton50, @megachile, @mpintar, @mikef451, @nanofishology, @nathantaylor, @oddfitz, @observerjosh, @pynklynx, @prairie_rambler, @rkostecke, @reidhardin, @rymcdaniel, @sagaciousoctopus, @sambiology, @sandrahorton, @tadamcochran, @wildcarrot

Posted on 16 December, 2023 23:01 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 68 comments | Leave a comment

14 September, 2023

Late fall Timberlake Bioblitz: October 21st, 2023

Link to observations from this weekend!
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?d1=2023-10-20&d2=2023-10-22&place_id=any&project_id=timberlake-biological-field-station&verifiable=any

Identification modal link here:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?d1=2023-10-20&d2=2023-10-22&place_id=any&project_id=timberlake-biological-field-station&verifiable=any

Species documented on iNat for the first time:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?d1=2023-10-20&d2=2023-10-22&place_id=any&verifiable=any&field:Similar%20observation%20set=First%20at%20Timberlake


Feel free to join us for a late October Bioblitz at Timberlake Field Station--October 21st. Newbies welcome! Attendees may begin arriving at noon Friday or anytime thereafter. We'll depart after lunch Sunday.

Tarleton State University’s Timberlake Field Station is an educational and research facility located on the Colorado River in the heart of Texas--midway between Austin and Abilene. The 790 acre property has over 2 miles of Colorado river frontage and includes bottomland and upland habitats.

I think everyone will already know, but it's been dry. There won't be much plant or aquatic life (unless the ponds catch water).

Upon arrival and before exploring, sign a release form at the pavilion. There will be printed maps for you to take also.

The original cabin (with AC and restrooms) is available and has 3 rooms with one bed and one room with 4 bunk beds. In addition there are two new bunkhouses (with AC and toilet) that sleep 12 each (6 bunk beds). There's lots of room to pitch a tent, or car camp, near the restroom and shower facility. No need to make reservation for cabin or bunkhouses--plenty of beds now.

Here's the link to detailed info about Timberlake (including directions): https://docs.google.com/document/d/19D_D0b94QvtB72GR8e5cSH8XHXFSe9DS69zffjRrbtw/edit?usp=sharing

Tarleton State University’s Timberlake Field Station is an educational and research facility located on the Colorado River in the heart of Texas--midway between Austin and Abilene. The 790 acre property has over 2 miles of Colorado river frontage and includes bottomland and upland habitats.

Timberlake iNaturalist Project:
https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/timberlake-biological-field-station

Observations listed from least observed to most observed:
https://jumear.github.io/stirfry/iNatAPIv1_observations_species_counts?place_id=118103&taxon_id=48460&verifiable=true&order=asc


Tag folks you think would be interested. This list is incomplete and not intended to be exclusive--apologies if any regulars have accidentally been omitted. First-timers are welcome!

@amzapp, @annikaml, @bacchusrock, @baxter-slye, @bosqueaaron, @brandonmeadows, @brencero, @brentano, @butterflies4fun, @cameralenswrangler, @centratex, @chasingchickens, @currenfrasch, @connlindajo, @daltonlawing, @devinpedraza, @eaneubauer, @elytrid, @franpfer, @gcwarbler, @gwaithir, @immortalwhat, @inhat83, @isaaceastland, @jcochran706, @jeff_back, @jeffmci9, @jgw_atx, @k8thegr8, @katherinedaniels, @knightericm, @kimberlietx, @laurahaynes, @lorimalloy, @lovebirder, @lulubelle, @mammelton50, @megachile, @mpintar, @mikef451, @oddfitz, @observerjosh, @pynklynx, @prairie_rambler, @rkostecke, @rymcdaniel, @sagaciousoctopus, @sambiology, @steven_bach, @swissagnes, @tadamcochran, @wildcarrot

Posted on 14 September, 2023 17:35 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 46 comments | Leave a comment

07 September, 2023

PRE-mavericks

You might be a maverick, but you also are likely a pre-maverick! There's this project which uses an algorithm to identify observations that are almost maverick--specifically, a 2 to 1 disagreement. This is a great way to catch those possible mis-identifications...you know, back when you were still "learning".

https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/pre-maverick

Two approaches are possible.

First approach:

you can go there, click the observations, filter to show YOUR observations, then work through them to see why you're a pre-maverick. Or here's the URL (replace yourusername with your username):
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?captive=any&place_id=any&project_id=156949&verifiable=any&user_id=yourusername


And this version of the URL allows you to see these in Identify mode:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?reviewed=true&quality_grade=casual%2Cneeds_id%2Cresearch&project_id=156949&verifiable=any&user_id=yourusername

Second approach:

as mentioned by @lappelbaum below, you can use this URL to find any pre-mavericks that you have IDed for other people (replace yourusername with your username):
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?captive=any&place_id=any&project_id=156949&quality_grade=needs_id&verifiable=any&not_user_id=yourusername&ident_user_id=yourusername (note there are two yourusernames to change)


And this version of the URL allows you to see these in Identify mode:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?reviewed=true&quality_grade=casual%2Cneeds_id%2Cresearch&project_id=156949&verifiable=any&ident_user_id=yourusername
Posted on 07 September, 2023 17:36 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 4 comments | Leave a comment

04 June, 2023

23-25 June 2023 @ Timberlake Biological Field Station

Identify mode (showing research grade also):
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/identify?quality_grade=needs_id%2Cresearch&project_id=timberlake-biological-field-station&d1=2023-06-23&d2=2023-06-25

Observations:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?d1=2023-06-23&d2=2023-06-25&place_id=any&project_id=timberlake-biological-field-station&verifiable=any


Please join us for a June Bioblitz at Timberlake Field Station--June 23-25. Attendees may begin arriving at 2 pm Friday or anytime thereafter. We'll depart after lunch Sunday.

Upon arrival and before exploring, sign a release form at the pavilion.

The original cabin (with AC and restrooms) is available and has four rooms beds. In addition there are two new bunkhouses (with AC and toilet). There's lots of room to pitch a tent, or car camp, near the restroom and shower facility. No need to make reservation for cabin or bunkhouses--plenty of beds now.

Here's the link to detailed info about Timberlake (including directions): https://docs.google.com/document/d/19D_D0b94QvtB72GR8e5cSH8XHXFSe9DS69zffjRrbtw/edit?usp=sharing

Tarleton State University’s Timberlake Field Station is an educational and research facility located on the Colorado River in the heart of Texas--midway between Austin and Abilene. The 790 acre property has over 2 miles of Colorado river frontage and includes bottomland and upland habitats.

Timberlake iNaturalist Project:
https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/timberlake-biological-field-station

Observations listed from least observed to most observed:
https://jumear.github.io/stirfry/iNatAPIv1_observations_species_counts?place_id=118103&taxon_id=48460&verifiable=true&order=asc



Tag folks you think would be interested. This list is incomplete and not intended to be exclusive.
@annikaml, @bacchusrock, @baxter-slye, @bosqueaaron, @brandonmeadows, @brencero, @brentano, @cameralenswrangler, @centratex, @chasingchickens, @currenfrasch, @connlindajo, @devinpedraza, @eaneubauer, @gcwarbler, @gwaithir, @immortalwhat, @inhat83, @isaaceastland, @jcochran706, @jeff_back, @k8thegr8, @knightericm, @kimberlietx, @laurahaynes, @lovebirder, @lulubelle, @mammelton50, @mpintar, @mikef451, @observerjosh, @prairie_rambler, @rkostecke, @rymcdaniel, @sagaciousoctopus, @sambiology, @swissagnes, @tadamcochran, @wildcarrot
Posted on 04 June, 2023 12:21 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 38 comments | Leave a comment

16 April, 2023

Penstemon guadalupensis and P. albidus

Penstemon guadalupensis is a Texas endemic documented from only a handful of counties. It's similar to P. albidus which ranges from Texas to Canada. Both differ from P. cobaea by being considerably smaller overall: smaller flowers, narrower leaves, shorter height. Despite its name, P. albidus (the white-flowered penstemon) comes in a pale lavender version. P. guadalupensis, however, has only been documented as white-flowered.

P. guadalupensis is underdocumented species. And almost certainly has declined in many areas due to land abuse. In 1895, it was very abundant along the Guadalupe River and Town Creek in vicinity of Kerrville. It hasn't been seen in Kerr Co. since.


Here's a slide showing the two side-by-side, a range map, and Heller's original description of P. guadalupensis along with the type specimen:

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1QhU48ez5eZkzk-5FfgNw6Weg6ztee6ovFhkZZTQ4U88/edit?usp=sharing


To distinguish the two, these are my thoughts at the moment, based on observing a lot of P. guadalupensis in person (and all of the observations on iNat) and comparing them visually with several hundred iNat observations of P. albidus from across the western great plains (Canada to Texas).

Based on that, here's my conclusion on how to distinguish them:

P. albidus has leaves that are as wide at the base as they are near the flowers--the basal leaves are not linear. The color of the leaves lean toward bluish green (often with a frosted or matte appearance--which would feel like sandpaper):
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/82465393
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/81787058
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/81068195

P. guadalupensis has leaves that are narrow at the base (linear, strap-like) and increase in width as they approach the flowers. The color of the leaves lean toward yellowish green:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/155081768
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/24737402

The difference in leaf width from base to flower (or lack thereof) being a character that really stands out to me. And FNA has some outright mistakes in the description and key both. I've since found Heller's original description, and he highlighted the leaf shape as I've described it as a main character. Note: the FNA couplet for these species contains an error in leaf width (compare it with the FNA species description).

There are some specimens that are contentious (i.e. https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/5892242), so the reliability of distinguishing characters may not be 100% and there may be hybridization or these species may represent clinal variation of one species, etc.

Posted on 16 April, 2023 22:45 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 18 comments | Leave a comment

23 March, 2023

Survey for Penstemon guadalupensis at Lake Proctor

Penstemon guadalupensis is a relatively uncommon penstemon which I found (one specimen of) at Lake Proctor: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/77358627

I'm curious how abundant they are at this location (a Corps park) and the Corps personnel are interested in documenting uncommon plants.

Folks interested in coming out to focus efforts on looking for Penstemon guadalupensis are welcome. We just need to settle on a date in mid-April. I'm not sure if we'd spend the night (it's an option), but that's something we can discuss.

@bosqueaaron, @jcochran706, @annikaml, @gcwarbler, @kimberlietx, @sambiology (tagging some of the more obsessive plant folks--feel free to tag others).

@kylewatter

Posted on 23 March, 2023 01:32 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 8 comments | Leave a comment

15 March, 2023

[Postponed TBD] Independence Creek and Diamond Y Bioblitz: 15-18 Sept 2023

[Postponed: this event has been postponed--hopefully we can reschedule]

Two unique West Texas properties, owned by The Nature Conservancy, will be the focus of a fall bioblitz! Both locations feature a spring--that precious source of cool water in the desert (but no aquatic collecting will be allowed). TNC is especially interested in us contributing to knowledge of odonate diversity at Diamond Y.

The plan is for Independence Creek to be our home base, with a day excursion to Diamond Y on Saturday (for those that want to). They're not too far apart (as measured in Texas distance).

We can start arriving Friday and spend Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights at IC.

Here's a map showing both locations.

Thanks to @knightericm for making arrangements and TNC staff for welcoming us to these unique properties.

Details regarding facilities at Independence Creek will be posted when available.


Posted on 15 March, 2023 00:28 by pfau_tarleton pfau_tarleton | 39 comments | Leave a comment