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  In This Edition:

You are Invited to Spring Fest on May 14th!

In Memoriam: A Tribute to Karl Haller

The Little Sit!

Mother's Day in the Butterfly Garden

Photo Club: Tips for Better Photos (Live!)

Birding with Jack: The Weekly Bird Census

Join Us for Second Saturday: Wildflowers

Make a Tram Tour Reservation Today!

Refuge Rocks Is Back!

Puddles' Craft Corner

Sign your kids up for Nature Ology!

Subscribe to the Featherless Flyer

You are invited to:


The celebration will take place on

May 14, 2022

  Cell phone users please rotate screen

  8 am:  Early Birding with Jack Chiles

10 am:  Second Saturday: Wildflowers of North Texas

12 pm:  Grand Opening/Dedication: The Education Pavilion

1 pm:  Snakes, Visitor Center Lecture Room

2 pm:  Migratory Birds, Visitor Center

3 pm:  Hagerman and YouVisitor Center

4 pm:  Mammals of Grayson CountyVisitor Center

1:45 / 3:00 / 4:15 / 5:30 pm

Planetarium CraftEducation Pavilion

Seed Bomb Craft under the carport

1:45 - 5:30 pm: Tram Tours and Butterfly Garden Walks 

7:00 pm Dark Sky Presentation with Bryon Clark--Visitor Center

8:15 pm A Look at the Night Sky


In Memoriam...

A Tribute to Karl Haller

by Jack Chiles

On Good Friday, April 15, 2022, Karl Haller peacefully departed this life at the age of 105 1/2 years. He was a weekly volunteer at Hagerman NWR for more than 50 years leading a weekly bird census group at the refuge, documenting and counting all of the birds seen and entering those figures into a database kept by him in the form of notebooks that were later entered into the eBird database at the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology.

Karl was a valuable asset to the refuge and to the National Wildlife Service and for that he was recognized as national volunteer of the year in 1995. There was a celebration for him at the refuge in March of 2013 where he was presented a beautiful plaque for his 50 years of bird surveys. He drove the van and conducted the surveys into his late nineties.

Karl retired as a major from the United States Air Force in 1965 making Sherman his and his wife and son’s home. He was employed in September of 1965 as a member of the adjunct faculty and staff at Austin College for 33 years until his retirement in 1998. He served as an instructor in biology and taxidermy, a biology preparator and curator, and a stockroom/laboratory coordinator. During his life he prepared thousands of bird study skins many of which are now at several major universities.

Karl’s life was full of accomplishments, including discovering new species of spiders, and a new species of warbler, Sutton’s Warbler, a hybrid. But to me his greatest accomplishment was to Texas birding. He was a mentor to many a birder. He paid special attention to young birders and took much pleasure in watching them progress in their knowledge of birds. Many of those young people have gone on to be lifelong birders.

I can speak personally to the enrichment of my life, having had him as a personal friend and mentor for more than thirty years. I was always amazed at his vast knowledge of nature, especially of birds and his cheerful willingness to impart that knowledge to those around him.

So when you walk Haller’s Haven Trail, named for him, give thought to the “Birdman of Hagerman”. He will be missed and fondly remembered by many. 

Early Birding with Jack

May 14th, 8:00 am, Meet at the Visitor Center

Master Naturalist Jack Chiles and Ornithologist Dr. Wayne Meyer will lead our Early Birding event, weather permitting. Enjoy an easy walk along Harris Creek Trail, learning about the birds in the area. Bring binoculars or borrow ours. Meet at the Visitor Center and return in time for the Second Saturday program.

Registration is appreciated so we may notify you of unforeseen changes/cancellation.

Second Saturday: Wildflowers with Carol Clark

May 14th at 10 am; Visitor Center Lecture Room

Registration Appreciated but Not Required

This program is a visual tour of North Central Texas wildflowers through the whole blooming season. It features many old favorites and some less familiar blooms. See the beautiful flowers that used to carpet our region in abundance, and that we still have the chance to preserve for the future.

Carol Clark is an amateur botany enthusiast, a Texas Master Naturalist, a Monarch Watch Conservation Specialist, and longtime member of the Native Plant Society of Texas. She and her husband own and operate Clark Haven, a wildlife preserve and custom wildflower seed business in Cooke County. Carol has spent much of her life exploring the great outdoors. Her favorite things to do are teaching about pollinators and native plants, leading discovery walks in local natural areas, and finding and photographing interesting plants.


Grand Opening of the New Education Pavilion

May 14th at 12:00 pm at the Education Pavilion

Come celebrate this wonderful partnership accomplishment and join us to honor a very special person who will forever be in our hearts.

Friends of Hagerman and Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge proudly present the “Education Pavilion”. Join us for the Grand Opening of this magnificent new facility that will allow groups of children and adults alike to learn about nature in an outdoor setting. The Pavilion will be dedicated in honor of refuge volunteer Katie Palmer who was instrumental in bringing hands-on nature programs for children to Hagerman Refuge over a decade ago.



May 14th at 1 pm; Visitor Center Lecture Room

Although very often misunderstood and feared creatures, did you know that snakes play a very important role in our ecosystem? Stop by the lake-side patio at the visitor center to meet a local snake expert and view live specimens. Learn more about the species of snakes we have in the north Texas area and key features to look for that may help determine whether a snake you see in the wild is non-venomous (most of them) or venomous. A very tame Corn Snake will be available for anyone who would like to have an up-close encounter or “take a photo with a snake”.

Photo by Don Champlin


Migratory Birds with Intern Robert Garza

Celebrate World Migratory Bird Day on May 14th at 2 pm; Visitor Center Lecture Room

Photo by Robert Garza

Migratory birds face many obstacles for survival including impacts from light pollution which attracts and disorients birds that migrate at night. Learn about this this artificial threat and how YOU can help mitigate it at home and in your community. The presentation will also provide information on the Eastern Bluebird, Northern Flicker, and Ruby-throated Hummingbird.


Hagerman and You with Laurie Sheppard

May 14th at 3 pmVisitor Center Lecture Room

"Everyone needs beauty as well as bread,

places to play in...

where nature may heal and cheer

and give strength to body and soul"

---John Muir

Come hear about opportunities to learn and grow, places to find peace and solitude, and activities to strengthen your body and mind.

American Pelicans by Laurie Sheppard


1:45 pm / 3:00 pm / 4:15 pm / 5:30 pm

Crafts in the Education Pavilion


Mammals of Grayson County with Bryon Clark

May 14 at 4 pm; Visitor Center Lecture Room

Visitors to Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge may see the large, more charismatic mammals such as white-tailed deer and coyotes but may be unaware of the diversity of mammals that occur in the region. This presentation will discuss the more than 60 species of mammals that occur in northeast Texas.


Dark Sky Presentation with Bryon Clark

May 14th at 7 pm in the visitor center

The sun is setting and the sky is becoming dark--well at least somewhat. Have you looked up at the night sky lately? How does it compare to the night sky when you were growing up? This presentation will first discuss the different types of light pollution and the negative consequences of the increasing amount of artificial light at night on the environment. It will conclude with actions that can be taken, both personally and collectively, to contribute to the ongoing global movement to reduce light pollution.

Photos by Pam Rendall-Bass

Join Us for Mother's Day

in the Butterfly Garden

Bring Mom out to enjoy a stroll through the Butterfly Garden at Hagerman NWR.  Garden docents will be on hand to help identify the Texas native plants, flowers and butterflies in the garden.

Special activities for families:

A butterfly craft with Cindy Steele, scavenger hunts, the Metamorphosis Puppet will be available and more. Garden walks are Come and Go or Come and Stay. The garden is free of charge and open to the public during Refuge hours.  Mother's Day is May 8th, click here for details and more butterfly walks.

Photos by Laurie Sheppard

Tips for Better Photos: Back to the Basics

May 21st, 2022 at 1:00 pm Hagerman NWR Visitor Center 

We will now be able to meet in person at the Visitor’s Center. Many of us have probably become a bit rusty over the past two years. What better way to start off with our guest speaker and professional photographer – THOMAS JUDD who will be presenting “Tips for better photos: Back to the Basics”.  Hope to see everyone there.

Photo by Thomas Judd

Thomas Judd is a professional photographer based in Denton, TX. His photography journey began in the 1970’s when, as a high school student, he worked on the school newspaper and yearbook as a staff photographer. He majored in photography at Southern Illinois University and graduated with a B.A. degree in 1980. Soon after he moved to north Texas and began working in the field professionally.

In 1983 Thomas started his own photography business which he still owns and operates. Now concentrating on corporate assignments, commercial photography, and head shots for business. His client list is extensive and includes many of the most well known companies in the area.

An early adopter of digital photography methods, Thomas took an interest in bird and wildlife photography the early 2000’s, and it remains a passion to this day. He has traveled extensively throughout the U.S. and Canada to photograph both rare and common species. His extensive archive of photographs contains over 50,000 client images and 20,000 personal project images including multiple self-published photo books of his travels.

You can follow him on Facebook at: 



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.

 See Jack's notes and latest  Census Results       

Come, Take a Tour on the Wildlife Explorer!

Enjoy a ninety minute tram tour of Wildlife Drive aboard our open-air Wildlife Explorer.  Learn about the fascinating history of the displaced town of Hagerman while watching for an abundance of wildlife.

  • Lots of stops for bird-watching and photography.   
  • Guided tours are weather permitting and seating is limited. 
  • Standbys are accepted if space permits. 
  • Recommended for age 6 - adult. 
  • Bring binoculars or borrow ours.
  • Meet at the visitor center 15 minutes before departure. 
  • Free, funded by Donations and powered by Volunteers.

Upcoming events

  • No upcoming events

The Refuge Rocks!

    • July 11, 2024
    • 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    • The Pottsboro Library, 104 N. Main Street, Pottsboro, TX 75076

    • July 20, 2024
    • 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
    • Hagerman NWR Visitor Center
    • 16

    The national bird of the United States featured on our quarters is the iconic bald eagle, found throughout the rest of North America as well. Learn about the migration and habitats of these majestic birds.  Discover the world of eagles and learn what they look like, where they live on the planet, the habitats they prefer, and other interesting facts.  We'll be learning about the bald eagle while participating in fun activities along with an eagle craft!   

    Come join us on July 20 for a free class for youth ages 5-10.  Registration Required

    Photo by Mary Elford Hulshouser

    • August 17, 2024
    • 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
    • Hagerman NWR Visitor Center
    • 19

    Have you ever wondered how we know so much about the Earth many, many years ago? Well, we have fossils and rocks to thank for that! What exactly are fossils and rocks? What information do they give scientists, and how? Fossils and rocks can give scientists clues about animals and plants that lived long ago and what the Earth was like then. During this program, we will be taking the children back millions of years to the time when the refuge area was covered by a vast saltwater ocean and learn about the plants, animals, and geology of our area long ago.  Come join us on August 17 for a free class on this popular topic!  This free program is for youth ages 5-10. Registration Required.

    • September 21, 2024
    • 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
    • Hagerman NWR Visitor Center
    • 20

    We’re diving into the extraordinary lives of beavers; those adorable, yet fiercely independent, builders of the wild. Beavers, nature’s master builders, create entire worlds with their incredible skills. Without tools or machinery, they use their ever-growing front teeth to chop down trees, one bite at a time. Can you imagine having teeth that never stop growing? Beavers do, and that’s their secret to felling trees and creating dams.  Come out and join us for this youth program to learn about these amazing builders!  We’ll be learning about beavers through a short mini lesson, fun activities, and a craft.  Come join us on September 21 for a free class for youth ages 5-10.  Registration required. 

    Photo by Kitta Weinkauf Dory

    • October 19, 2024
    • 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
    • Hagerman NWR Visitor Center
    • 22

     Bats are often called creepy, scary and spooky, but they often get a bad rap. They’re an important species that impacts our daily lives in ways we might not even realize. From pollinating our favorite fruits to eating pesky insects to inspiring medical marvels, bats are actually heroes of the night. 

    Come join us on October 19 for a free class for ages 5-10 to go a little batty for bats through games, activities, and crafts!  Registration Required. 

    • November 16, 2024
    • 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
    • Hagerman NWR Visitor Center
    • 23

    Even though animals don't speak like us, they still communicate with each other using their own language. They use many clever and creative ways to communicate with each other, from head-turning howls to jaw-dropping dances!  For many animals, communicating is as important to their life chances as finding food and water.  This program will explore the variety of innovative ways animals “talk” to each other.  We’ll have a howling good time learning about animal communication with a short lesson, some fun games and activities, as well as a fun craft!  Come join us on November 16 for a free class for youth ages 5-10.  Registration Required

    Lisa Hendricks Walsh

Puddles' Craft Corner


By Cindy Steele, Master Naturalist

It’s Bluebonnet Time!

When the Texas wildflowers blanket the fields across the state, Texans have never been able to stay indoors. We’re always thinking of ways to get outside. This is especially true when our beloved bluebonnets begin to paint our fields and roadways this beautiful shade of blue.

Texans have a deep love for bluebonnets, and this is seen every year when families load up in the car and head on road trips across the state to take family photos in fields of bluebonnets. We are so proud of our bluebonnets here in the Lone Star State we officially made the...

Shop Amazon Smile to Support the Friends of Hagerman

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 smile.amazon.com 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, 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, Laurie Sheppard, Pam Rendall-Bass, Cindy Steele, Cathy Van Bebber, Thomas Judd

Editor: Patricia Crain

Refuge Manager: Kathy Whaley

Deputy Refuge Manager: Paul Balkenbush

Visitor Services Manager: Spencer Beard 

Friends of Hagerman NWR Foundation

6465 Refuge Road, Sherman, TX 75092

Phone: 903-786-2826

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Contact Us  



Friends of Hagerman NWR

The refuge is open from sunrise to sunset every day of the year, drive on any road unless gated.

Admission to the refuge, parking and most events/activities are funded by donations and powered by volunteers. 

6465 Refuge Road

Sherman, TX 75092

Contact Us


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.

Please add friendsofhagerman@gmail.com to your contacts to ensure delivery of registration confirmations, account information and the Featherless Flyer 

Special thanks to Nancy Miller for the amazing photo of the Visitor Center

See you at the refuge! 

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