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Activities

E-Systems Components of Project E-SCAPE

Description of Natural Components: The ecosystem and activity stations are being designed to support academic concepts required by students in the classroom. The two areas of focus within the E-Systems are:

1.) Ecological Knowledge
2.) Wildlife Resources

This outdoor classroom provides opportunities for exciting, hands-on, real-world learning activities with students and teachers. Being able to see and work in environmental training zones and nature areas will increase students' enthusiasm for learning and impact self-esteem.

Flora/Fauna: Situated in the piney woods of East Texas, including steep dissected hillsides and their associated vegetation, these ecosystems provide considerable habitat variety. Wildlife species that are characteristic of East Texas include: deer, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, bobcats, and cougars, as well as numerous species of birds. The recent migration of reintroduced black bears adds to the project's resources. These bears were once indigenous to the area, and through a recovery program in Louisiana, sightings are starting to occur within this area. These animals are working their way into East Texas along the Sabine River, which runs just 7 miles north of the site.

The E-System is divided into two main areas that are comprised of a woodlot system of mixed hardwoods and softwoods. There is a natural wetland system created by steep embankments and springs that feed a creek that runs throughout the system. This natural landscape is situated in the northern section of the wildlife refuge and is bordered by farmlands to the north and wetland areas that further lead into woodlands located at the southeastern side of the park.

Elevation (Highest Point): 570 ft. above sea level, one of the highest points in Smith County.

Weather: July average high is 97 degrees with a SW breeze; January average low is 32 degrees; first/last freeze: Nov. 25/April 3.

Activities: Activities include nature study through E-Trails with structured activities at E-Stations along the woodlot and wetland systems. The structured activities originate from the curriculum of Project WILD/ Aquatic and Project Learning Tree. Each station will be clearly labeled and cross-referenced to these activity guides. Additional structuring allows for electronic monitoring of captive felines who represent three continents. This monitoring is to be correlated directly to a WeatherNet Station, allowing for correlations to be observed, drawn, and recorded for long-term behavioral studies.

Information Obtainable from Weather Station:

  1. Outdoor temperature
  2. Indoor temperature
  3. Auxiliary temperature
  4. High for the day
  5. Low for the day
  6. Outdoor temperature rate change
  7. Wind chill/Heat index
  8. Dew point
  9. Wet bulb
  10. Relative humidity
  11. Humidity change rate
  12. Min/Max humidity
  13. Barometric pressure
  14. Barometric change rate
  15. Min/Max barometric pressure
  16. Wind speed
  17. Wind direction
  18. Average wind speed
  19. Highest gust for the day
  20. Daily rain
  21. Monthly rain
  22. Yearly rain
  23. Rain/hour rate
  24. Max rain rate/hour
  25. Light intensity
  26. Max light
  27. Last light

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