The Education Pavilion:

Construction Has Begun!

It took 49 dump truck loads to bring in the 490 yards of dirt needed to level the area. The prep-work for the foundation is almost completed, and the concrete will be poured soon!  If all goes well, students will be able to have classes in the pavilion soon.   The pavilion will be plumbed and wired but won’t have water and electricity right away.

Refuge Update:

Notice: Due to the Coronavirus, the Visitor Center remains closed.  Refuge lands remain open to the public from sunrise to sunset daily.  Restrooms are located at Goode Day Use Area, the Visitor Center, Big Mineral Day Use Area and Sandy Point Day Use Area. See Map

Texoma Water Level

When Will It Flood?

Heads Up:  Lake Texoma crested on July 11th (623.59 MSL) and is now on the way down. The bad news it is going down very slowly and still has a ways to go before Wildlife Drive will no longer be flooded (620 MSL). As the water recedes you may park near the gate and walk or bike in, but please do not block the gate. The roads will be repaired and opened as soon as possible.

The Lotus Flowers are in Bloom!

Meadow Pond is almost completely covered with them.  It is worth the four mile (r.t.) hike along Meadow Pond Trail  to see them.  Due to the flood, you must access the trail via Highway 82: turn North onto Old Southmayd Road towards the visitor center, the trailhead is about 4 miles ahead on the left.  Refuge lands are open from sunrise to sunset.  

Lotus Flower Photos by Pam Rendall-Bass



Coming Soon!

New Restrooms for Big Mineral

The new restroom will be ADA accessible, concrete, waterless “vault” toilets

By Kathy Whaley       

Refuge staff are excited to announce that a project recently submitted to the USFWS Regional Office for special funding consideration has been approved! The composting toilet at Big Mineral Day Use Area has been in use for more than 25 years. On more than one occasion it has been flooded including in 2015 when the top actually floated away and had to be located and reattached. This old restroom will be removed and an ADA accessible, concrete, waterless “vault” toilet (similar to the one in the photo) with separate sides for men and women will be installed in the Day Use Area, hopefully on a bit higher ground to further reduce the likelihood of flooding. Each side will have a sealed, buried, 1,000-

gallon capacity tank that will accommodate around 15,000 uses before needing to be pumped. The “stovepipe” ventilation design of the facility creates positive continual air flow which carries the vault air out through the vent pipe keeping the building mostly odor-free. This upgraded restroom facility will be a nice addition to the picnic tables, covered picnic pavilion, and concrete sidewalks in the area that were made possible by the Friends of Hagerman a couple of years ago. The new restroom will be ordered soon and installed as soon as it can be scheduled this summer or fall.


Second Saturday

Hummingbirds with Bert Garcia 

Saturday, August 14th, at 10:00AM Online via ZOOM, Registration Required

"Crazy Trio" Photo by Bert Garcia

Hummingbirds are fascinating creatures that you can observe in your backyard. Bert Garcia will share information about this marvel of nature. Hummingbirds are the smallest bird in the world, but they can perform amazing feats and have super qualities. Bert reveals where to find Hummingbirds and which ones are commonly seen in North Texas. He also provides best practices for attracting Hummingbirds to your backyard.

Since 2006, Bert Garcia has been an active volunteer at Hagerman NWR. He is currently a member of the Friends of Hagerman NWR Board of Directors and chairs the Wildlife Explorer Tram committee. Bert’s support includes policy committee chair, former chair of the Bluebird nest box committee, and presenter for the speaker’s bureau. He enjoys physical fitness, fishing, golf and is an avid photographer and a Texas Master Naturalist.

H. S. “Bert” Garcia, a native Texan, has been a licensed attorney in the State of Texas for 44 years and was a federal prosecutor for 24 of those years. He supervised the Sherman and Plano offices of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Texas for 19 years, was appointed United States Attorney for Puerto Rico by President G.W. Bush on June 3, 2002, and served in that capacity for 4 years before returning to Texas. Before law school, Bert served in the United States Marine Corps for almost 5 years, attained the rank of Captain, and earned his military wings. He flew A4 Skyhawk jets for the Marine Corps.

Plant of the Month:Lemon Bee Balm

Monarda citriodora

Genus: Monarda

By Cindy Steele

Have you ever imagined discovering a plant? What if you stumbled across a Texas mountain laurel in bloom, only to be hit in the nose with a grape-soda fragrance bomb? That’d be crazy, right? Nicolas Bautista Monardes — a 16th century physician and botanist — didn’t actually discover plants in the genus Monarda. Their singular scents and towering stacks of petals and bracts were known and used by indigenous North Americans before him. But he did study them extensively from across the pond in Spain, where he took a particular interest in their medicinal properties (monardas are said to treat an array of human ailments). And they were eventually named in his honor.

Part of the mint family, Lamiaceae, plants in this aromatic genus are popular with pollinators as well as people, counting native bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds among

Puddles' Craft Corner

By Cindy Steele

The Humming Sound of Summer!

Your kids will love making a Cicada!

Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner. You just know it’s gonna be a scorcher when you hear the cicadas in the morning. They sound like 90 degrees in August; like sizzling, sticky heat bubbling over and down the tops of the trees around you. They sound like ice cream trucks, lawnmowers, kids playing in the pool, and the clink of ice in a glass of lemonade—cicadas stealthily singing in the backdrop as if they were there all along.

A cicada is an insect of the order Hemiptera, suborder Auchenorrhyncha, in the superfamily Cicadoidea, with big eyes wide apart on the head and usually transparent, 

Birding with Jack

Updated, Weekly Census Results

By Master Naturalist Jack Chiles, Mike Petrick and

Dr. Wayne Meyer (Pictured Right)

Each Tuesday a team of experienced birders, including Master Naturalist Jack Chiles, traverse 35 miles of refuge roads and hiking trails, documenting every bird they encounter. This Bird Census is reported to The Cornell Lab of Ornithology for use in research, and each week we will bring you a link to their actual bird count, and a summary of their adventures.

July 27: Bird Census Results

The summer heat has arrived and it began to heat up rapidly. Most of the roads are still flooded and Wildlife Drive is closed as well as Bennett west of the Big Mineral Picnic Area. Starting out we checked the owl nesting box in the maintenance shed and the 3 young Barn Owls are still in the box but look like they are just about ready to fledge anytime. We then proceeded to the area overlooking Wildlife Drive and saw our first Tricolored Heron of the year. We also observed a

Shop Amazon Smileto Support the Friends of Hageman

Amazon SmileDid you know that you can support the Friends of Hagerman while shopping on Amazon? If you shop on Amazon using this Amazon Smile link, the Friends will receive 0.5% of eligible purchases. Simply go to and sign in with your Amazon account. Under "Your Account" select "Change your Amazon Smile Charity" and enter "Friends of Hagerman" in the charity search box. Once your results appear, select the Friends of Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge Foundation. Every time you make a purchase on Amazon Smile, and the Friends will get a donation. Thanks for helping us make Hagerman a great wildlife refuge!

Kroger: Stop by the customer service desk at Kroger and link your Kroger Card to the Friends of Hagerman: the Friends will get rewards for every dollar you spend, at no cost to you.


Thank You

To Our Contributors:

Jack Chiles,  Cindy Steele, Cathy Van Bebber, Kathy Whaley

Refuge Manager: Kathy Whaley

Deputy Refuge Manager: Paul Balkenbush

Editor: Patricia Crain

Friends of Hagerman NWR Foundation

6465 Refuge Road, Sherman, TX 75092

Phone: 903-786-2826

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