Conservation Matters May 2015

The Texas Land, Water and Wildlife Connection

Public invited to water talks across Devils River Basin June 22–26

Anyone interested in water conservation and quality and the construction and maintenance of water wells and septic systems in the Devils River Basin is invited to one of the Water Talks Workshops June 22–26 at various locations in the area.

These workshops are offered through collaboration among the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s Texas Well Owner Network, Nueces River Authority, Devils River Conservancy and Devils River Association.

“The Texas Well Owner Network program is for Texas residents who depend on household wells for their water needs, so they can learn about improving and protecting their community water resources,” said Drew Gholson, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service program specialist and network coordinator.

Gholson said the workshops help well owners become familiar with water well construction and maintenance; water conservation and ownership; water quality and drinking water standards; abandoned wells, how and why to plug them; and proper function and management of on-site sewage facilities.

He said participants may bring well-water samples to the workshop for screening. The cost is $10 per sample, due when samples are turned in. Well owners who would like to have their water sampled can pick up two sample containers and instructions from their respective AgriLife Extension office.

“Water samples will be screened for nitrates, total dissolved solids and bacteria,” Gholson said. Bringing water samples to the training is not required, but those wanting to have water samples analyzed must attend.

The dates, times and locations for the workshops will be:

  • June 22 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at Mitzi’s Hookers Restaurant, near Lake Amistad’s Rough Canyon Recreational Area in Del Rio. Food and refreshments will be available for purchase. For directions, call 830.768.3616. Sampling containers should be obtained prior to the workshop from the AgriLife Extension office for Val Verde County, 300 E 17th St. in Del Rio.
  • June 23 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at The Kitchen Table and Mercantile, 34971 State Highway 163, south of Juno. Food and refreshments will be available for purchase. For directions, call 432.292.4872. Sampling containers should be obtained prior to the workshop from the AgriLife Extension office for Crockett County, 1301 Avenue AA in Ozona.
  • June 24 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Sutton County Community Center, 1700 N. Crockett St. in Sonora. A catered lunch with donations requested will be available along with complimentary coffee and refreshments. For directions, call 325.387.3101. Sampling containers should be obtained prior to the workshop from the AgriLife Extension office for Sutton County, located at the same address.
  • June 26 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at John Shanks Chapel in the Blue Sage West Community near Del Rio. This program is for Blue Sage landowners only. Attendees are welcome to bring their own refreshments. Sampling containers should be obtained prior to the workshop from the AgriLife Extension office for Edwards County, 400 Main St. in Rocksprings.

Gholson said space is limited, so attendees are requested to register at twon.tamu.edu/training or by calling 830-278-6810.

The Texas Well Owner Network is funded through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant provided by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The project is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute.

The Nueces River Authority is a small government agency involved in river education and outreach programs. The conservancy and association are both non-profit organizations involved with the river protection and conservation. Programs in the Devils River Basin are funded in part by the Dixon Water Foundation. 

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