Nature Notes Previous Episodes

Tracing a History of Change, Innovation Among Texas’ Ancient Nomadic Peoples

From the Ice Age to the late 19th century, Native Americans had pursued nomadic ways of life in what’s now Texas for more than 12,000 years. It’s possible for a contemporary outsider to imagine those ways of life were timeless, … Continue reading

Full episode details

Rio Grande Joint Venture Fights to Save the Chihuahuan Desert’s Grassland Birds

They’re prairie seas, framed by desert-mountains – from the Marathon Basin to northern Mexico, the Chihuahuan Desert contains stretches of stunning grasslands. The grasslands support ranching, and iconic wildlife – from soaring raptors to sprinting pronghorn.  They’re also home to … Continue reading

Full episode details

Walter Prescott Webb’s Great Plains

He was an unlikely candidate to become one of Texas’ most famous intellectuals. Reared on an East Texas farm, Walter Prescott Webb was, at 40, unemployed, having failed out of a University of Chicago doctoral program. Then, in 1931, he … Continue reading

Full episode details

Cabeza de Vaca’s “Chronicle”: A Singular Glimpse of the Native American Past

“I wandered through many very strange lands, lost and naked. This [chronicle] is the only thing that a man who left there naked could bring back.” In 1527, with hundreds of his countrymen, Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca sailed for … Continue reading

Full episode details

“Lost Crops Rediscovered”: Uncovering an Ancient History of Agave Farming

For Native Americans in the Southwest, agave was the staff of life. Slow-roasted, agave hearts were converted into sweet food, and nomadic peoples cached dried agave for lean winter months. Agave fiber was used in baskets and mats. The plant … Continue reading

Full episode details