It was a great summer of events at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center! Tomorrow brings the Lady Bird Johnson Centennial Tribute Day, and the last two Nature Nights events were held in the latter half of July.
Lady Bird Johnson Centennial Tribute Day
Tomorrow, July 29, the Wildflower Center is having a special Lady Bird Johnson Centennial Tribute Day to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Mrs. Johnson’s birth and a new exhibit on her conservation efforts.
Admission is free for the entire family, and activities include:
- Lady Bird’s Wildflowers, a children’s play by the ZACH Theatre
- Music with Lucas Miller, the singing zoologist
- Storytelling, and much more!
Mrs. Johnson has done a lot for nature! In addition to my frequent visits to the Wildflower Center, I also hiked on the Lady Bird Johnson Grove Nature Trail through the California Redwoods in the Spring.
Nature Nights events
What a wonderful summer for Nature Nights at the Wildflower Center. The last two events in July focused on bats and snakes, and I had a great time earlier this month helping to teach kids about invasive species and become invasive hunters as part of my Invasive Hunter Academy during the Power of Plants event.
I learned about bats at a very young age. My kindergarten class took a field trip to the Austin American-Statesman newspaper office, and in the twilight, we watched hundreds of bats fly out from the Congress Avenue bridge. I remember using a flashlight with red cellophane over the light, so as to not disturb the bat’s night vision.
Highlights from the Nature Night’s evening on July 19 included:
- Habitat Hikes and a presentation with live African Straw-colored Flying Fox bats and Mexican Free-tailed bats given by Bat Conservation International
- Bat themed crafts from the Teenage Ecowarriors
When I visited Onion Creek’s whirlpool springs earlier this year as part of a hike led by the City of Austin’s Wildland Conservation Division, I heard and saw rattlesnakes.
During the hike, someone told me that if your group is walking in a single file line, the third person in the line is the one most commonly bitten. Why? Because when the first person walks by the rattlesnake, it gets mad. When the second person walks by, it’s furious, and by the time the third person walks by, the snake can’t control itself any longer!
Is it truth, legend, or maybe a little of both?
Highlights from the Nature Night’s evening on July 26 included:
- Live snakes exhibit from the Austin Reptile Service
- Common Central Snakes Presentation from Dr. Travis LaDuc, the assistant curator of herpetology for the University of Texas at Austin Natural Science Center
- Snake Walk with City of Austin Parks and Recreation Ranger, Mr. David Papke
I can’t wait until the Wildflower Center’s fall events, including the wonderful Luminations celebration in December.