The TCMA Activities Newsletter is the official
publication of the Texas Cave Management Association,
a Conservancy of the National Speleological
--July 24, 1992 Vol. 3, No. 1 Ths TCMA Actiuitiw Newsletter ia the official publication of the Texan Cave Management Awodation, a Conaemcy of tha National Speleolagicd Society. Distribution is free to TCMA members. Amociata madamnhip coda $10 annually. Methe m-p, in qd $26 iaatdhenl8, ia $100. hd manbenhip requite to P.O. Box 310732, New Braunfels, TX 78131. Additional complimentary copies an distributed on a temponry b at tho Editor'! ducntion to cave owner*, NSS mamben and internal organizations, and other* involved in avo coneervation prqjecte. COPYRIGHT c 1902 Texas Cave Management Anodation. Internal organisation! of th National Speleological Society may reprint any item first appearing in The TCMA Actwvtwa Newsletter u long u proper credit ia given and a copy of the newriettar cantaininff the reprinted material i mailed to the editor. 0thOrgalizatiOM mhouId cuntad the dta beform reprinting The TCMA Activities Newsletter material. The opinions and methob expressed in thu publication an solely thow of the rupective authors, and not of the Texas Cave Management Aaaodation or the National Speleological Society. The Texas Cave Management AModation and the National Speleological Society do not endone, guarantee, or otherwim certify any such opinion! or methods in any application or uuge. POSTMASTER Send addreu changes to the Editor, Jay Jordan, 1518 Devon Circle, Dallas, TX 76217-1206. Telephone (214) 398-9272. DEADLINES: Articlw, announcementa, and material for publication mint b ubmitto to the oditer. EXCHANGES: Ihe TUB! Cave Management Auodation will exchange newsletter with other grottoB at the Grotto's discretion. Contact the editor. EXECUTIVE DIKBCTOB Jack Ralph BOARD CHAIRMAN CMlRiMbdMk DIRECTORS Ifikawitaa Jay Jorin Mfluwaldi TirToCav U.T. Station Box 8036 Aorta,IX787134038 hs TBXSpdal~~ialAo JohnSMOM 1 U.T. Station Box 8036 Aorta,TX787134026 COVER ART: Pen-and-ink drawing by Kenny McGw. Conservation Calendar June 7-18 Kant geology workshop, Mammoth Cave, offered by Center fa Cave and Kant Studiea, Western Kentucky University, and Mammoth Cave National Park. 14-90 Speleology woriuhop, Mammoth Cave, offered by Centat for Cave and Kant Studies, Western Kentucky UnivtTBty, and Mammoth Cave National Park. 14-90 Exploration of Mammoth Cave, at the park. Of&nd by Cantor fa Cave and Kant Studies, Western Kentucky Univwity, and Mammoth Cave National Park. 91-97 Carlabad Cavern Restoration Field Camp, New Madco. Contact: Dick Ventam, CCRP Coordinator, 410 Stallion Rd., Rio Rancho. NM 87124-2326. 3-7 National Speleological Sdety 1992 convention, Salua, Ind. Indudm N88 Conservation and Management Section dona and meeting, many other evnb. Annua Wayno's Cave cleanup, Indiana. Sponsored by Indiana Kant Conservancy and Central Indiana Grotto. (Send calendar additioddeletiona to the TCMA Activities Newsletter editor.) Next Meeting by OZTOTL Staff Tho not meeting of the Texas Cave Management Aaaodation will b* on Tuday Aug. 18 in Amtin, Texas. Please contact Mike Walah at TCMA for man information. His telephone number is (512) 629-2168. Meetings are usually at the Austin Public Library branch on William Cannon in South Austin. The meeting will begin promptly at 7830 PJB. Braunfels by Jay Jorden Shoila Knight and I drov to Autin for a meeting at Pete
July 24,1992 Vol' 3, NO. 1 Strickland'a place near Lake Travis. Dozens ofand San Antonio cavern were in attendance for the annual swim and slide show party, along with a dinner and hot tuolxnff. Although we did not go cave exploring that very evening, we talked an awftd lot bou caving. Many good caving abota from Mexico, New Mexico, NSS Conventione and elsewhere were ahown. Mirny of tho legends of Texu caving were in attendance. We even saw Tuny Holringar (yea, ho liv!) at die party. Another featured attraction, Mdea Pete's Eighth Wonder of the Caving World hia 50-foot long concrete dam WM the California ranch-rtyle houn he had pen four yan building on the ahor of hia pond It is a very attractive, wellbuilt home with high ceilings, hardwood floors and lota of kitchen and living space. Pete and Jocie were land enough to let the four of us stay over for the night, after the reveling died down about 2 am. or m. We awoke refreshed and went swimming, then had coffee and homemade muffins courteay Jocie! After a leimnely morning, we began driving east into Austin via the very acenic Ranch Road 2222, then south on the MoPac Exp-y and Capitol of Texan Parkway toward New Braudela, stopping at Taco Cabana for a breakfast taco along the way. We arrived in New Braunfels shortly before noon Sunday, in time for the Texas Cave Management Association meeting. Thoee in attendance also included: Mike Walah, Jack Ralph, Alejandro via go me^, Ron Ralph, Carolyn Biegert and Pat Geary. After a grilled hadurger luncheon and mimming in the beautiful, spring-fed Comal River in back of Mike's home, the TCMA buminen meeting was conducted. Among iks discussed, the riding lawn mower that TCMA purchaoed haa had recent problems. Alejandro outlined the mechanical problems and proposed that the mower be sold, with proceeds going to purchaae a new mower with warranty. Mike reported that all but $300 or so of a grant for improving the % Whirlpool Cave Prwarve property haa been spent, with expenditures including the mower, gravel for road bow, etc. Alejandro's motion, with a friendly amendment by Jay to a& the original mower's seller for help andlor remuneration, passed. Another topic involved ongoing talka with a property management company for acquisition of 3.6 acres of land, -including Lost Oads Cave in Austin. It was moved that Jay contact the pmperty management company to iron out detail8 surrounding a survey and title policy. Mike's motion to present an application for a concession to the Tezu Parks and Wildlife Department to run recreational caving tripe in some state-owned caves was approved. Mike said the plan, if succewful, could gain access to some cavea on Texas parks that cavers aren't already visiting. Editor*# Noh Formal minutea of the TCMA meeting will be pubbhed at a later date. TCMA News by Jay Jorden Editor's Note: Here in a nutshell b the latest Texas Cave Management Association new. The Tern Cave Management Awociation board on June ll, 1voted to enter into a conmet with NatiomBmk, through the FedenJ Depont Iiunmmce Corp, for purehaw of approximately 3.6 acre* of land in South Autia, Texas, which include* Lot Ouu Cave. The cave, which contaiiu a large room and blow a considerable quantity of air, in located next to a robdivirion project and a junior high who01 which if m&-mWmanA&mmrand TCMA member, ha inrtafled an excellent gate on the cave. and a fence was built to include the adjacent land inride a compound. Hie board met at a meetinf room of the Austin Public Library after member again toured the cave property. Member* qlmo v@tad the nearby Whirlpool Cave Prewrve, which is owned and managed byTCMA. Member* preient at the meeting included Warton, Mike Waldi, Jack Ralph, Carl Ponobdrk and Jay Jorden. Other ware Charlie &wa* and Lee Jay Grave*. More information on Lost Oaaa will become available in the coming month, as a cloeing on the property ia scheduled. TCMA News: A Note from the Executive Director by Jack Ralph If s time for the recreational caving community to take a long, hard look at their level of commitment to the resource that they depend on for fun and adventure. i contend that if we don't participate and commit our time, money and energies to prwerving and managing cave resources they will be lost, period. We will not immediately low accen to all cavea; it will be a gradual procew through "development," withdraw! and neglect. If a time for an "attitude check*. ForWl~mbvehn~Wmh~@ cave owner relations and adhering to the "take nothing but pictures ... ethic was auffident precaution and payment for visitation and protection. While these are unquestionably neceooary, if6 no longer enough.
m-July 24, 1992 Vol. 3, No. 1 -4 Contrary to our impression* within the limited sphere of fellow cavers, there is no dear, strong land or resource ethic in the United Stataa at this time. The National Environmental Policy Act waa adopted almost 20 yean ago, and it etill im ddered to vnt a controwmy between public welfare and private land ownership rights. We have the duty to represent the environmental ethic inherent in this debate and educate the public about our position. Due to our recreational activities, we have an unusual sensitivity to the consequences of unregulated development on cove resources, groundwater hydrology, etc. Caving, however, is not a lianwd profeaaion because society aa a whole has not recognized the potentially severe conaequences of incompetent resource management. Our reqodbility goes beyond madding data and infimnation and cataloging thaw facia. Our responsibility is to put facts into a context of ahared community values to affect appropriate change, in other words advocacy. We are responsible for strengthening, at every opportunity, the resource and land ethic that is slowly developing in our society. We are among the groupd that must lead society to a ~tionthath~dhastobeanb~+of our earth's ecosystem a suffer the conaequences of existence on a dying planet. The TCMA is relatively new. As a professional and adentific society, our mission encompasses scientific study, resource advocacy and profesmonel management services. Our membenhip include* an extraordinarily diverse group of skilled people. -zing, motivating and utilizing the oldla and expertim of our entire membership is crucial to our continued aucceaa. construction of an International Center for Bat Reeearch and Conservation at Texas A&bf University. Dr. Marlin D. Tuttle and Dr. David Schmidly are co-directors of the new center, termed the world's first institution devoted to Btudying bate. Two Fort Worth foundations have committed $1 million in grants to fund joint research and education programs involving bate, including the new center, by Texas A&Ws Wildlife and Piaheriea Science Department and the Austin-based Bat Conservation International. "While dogs are man's best companion animal friend, bats are man's but ecological friend," Schmidly said. "Bats pollinate plante, diaperse seeds and eat countless tons of insects, all while playing a crucial mle in perpetuating the earth'e delicate ecoBytenu." Announcement of the center and funding by the Sid W. Richardson and Ban Foundations came May 26 at a Dallas new0 conference. It preceded broadcast of "The Secret World of Bate," a CDS Television special progr. Schmidly, one of the world's leading authorities on beta, said they are often misunderstood. "When some people see a bat, they immediately conjure up that it is a rabid aniami and they want to harm it," Schmidly said. In reality, rabiex is no more prevalent in bats than in moat other animals. This note is ddgned to motivate you to become a more active participant in the TCMA. The ioouse go beyond recreation. Porter policies encouraging proper management of cave reaoiftcM. Campaign for effective mitigation of development projects. Sponsor a cave in your area. Find new members. Maintain your own economic support of the group. Be part of the mlution. TCMA is working. We are a registered nonprofit organization. We have the infrastructure and background to facilitate your commitment Call or write, but do it now. Editor'm Note: The Texas Cave Management Amadation is a nonprofit organization that owns and manages cave resources. It is baaed in Central Texas. The address for more information in: P.O. Box 310732, New hunfels, TX 78131. The phone numbers are (512) 629-2160 or (214) 398-9272. Bat Research Center from staff reports DALLAS Two scientist! have announced the planned Schmidly said Texas has more opecieo of bats 32 than any other state. Texaa bat* eat about half a million pounds of insects each day, according to a prepared statement from Texas A&M. Tattle, founder and executive director of BCI, brought Zoie the bat to the new conference. Hu non-profit group researches and promotw bat conwrvation. Tattle, who wrote the book America's Neighborhood Bats, said that almost 1,000 kinds of bats worldwide help maintain many fragile ecoaytenu. Bate, in their pollination role, are crucial to reseeding of rain forests, many of which are threatened, said Tuttle. He said Bracken Cave near San Antonio is home to between 20 million and 40 million bate, the world's largest concentration. But many species of bate are threatened or endangered, scientists say. Others are now extinct because of dayings or habitat loom. Schmidly, author of The Bats of Texas, said the A&M center will provide a model program for conservation efforts. "Bats are a keystone species in many of the world's ecosystems," said Schmidly, adding that the center will study bets' link to economic development and land management.
~~f~~tetfctf~~cu^a July 24, 1992 Vol. 3, NO. 1 -6 TCMA will re-evaluate the economics of the situation. -Mike Walah and Carl Ponebahek will continue diacuaaiona with the Edwards Underground Water District concerning cave reaources in the recharge area. Texas Cave Management Association: Minutes of June 11, 1992 Meeting submitted by Jack Ralph -TCMA continues to meet with representatives of the Texas Nature Cooaervancy to strengthen ties and build a closer working relationship. Jim Wolff completed the new membership list Copies were handed out -Jay Jordan will draft a letter recruiting Patrons. It should be ready for the NSS Convention. Public Relation* Jay Jorden reports that the Amtin American-Statesman may be doing an article on TCMA won. No more information is available at this time. Cave Acquisition Several caves were discussed, but no action was taken on specific cans until later in the meeting. The Patron Information Sheet will be drafted soon. Mike Walah made a motion that it should be TCMA policy to actively work toward cave ownership and cave access agreements. Second by Jay. Motion carried. Jay hopee that a TCMA newsletter will be published soon. Education Cave Management -Work is under way to develop lesson plans for middle and high schools in rural recharge a& concerning caves, groundwater and pollution. -. $366 was spent for liability and medical insurance. All TCMA members are now covered with $1 million liability aid (75,000 accidental death while conducting TCMA buainma. Activitieo continue to collect all cave-related videos for the TCMA library. The 0-9 Well contract is coming up for renewal soon. Mike Warton will continue his stewardship of this resource. Bat Protection Whirlpool Cave Prewrve David Cooper of Bat Conservation International indicated that he may join the advisory board for bat conservation. We look forward to his continued support. -TCMA used $430 of the $1,000 grant from the Wray Truat to purchase an 18 horsepower riding lawnmower. Liaison Activities Additional road baee material will be purchased to make an allroad to the property. TPWD and TNC work discussed further. Additional measures will be taken to secure access to TPWD caves on behalf of the cavern of Texas. TPWD still seems burdened at resolving the question of liability and habitat protection on the parka. Dave (the friendly neighbor) asked to borrow the property for the weekend of July 18 for a staff party. Unanimous approval from the board. TCMA was contacted by the Kant Waters Institute of West Virginia to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding to increase our working relationship with them. Mike Walsh will pursue the details of the MOU and draft a response. It was propaed that the Sunday following each TCMA regular meeting be get aside for the group to meet informally and pdbly lead tripe to Whirlpool. Diocuasion will continue. Monitoring Actidtiem Peter Marsh with the City of Austin was informed that gate construction on Midnight Cave would have to be portponed until September at the earliest. TCMA remains active in pursuing management activitiei with the city on other cave projects. A sum of $495 was spent on initial printing charges toward completion of the 1989 National Cave Management Symposium proceedings. Jay is finishing up the last paper and only requires a final proofreading/editing to have a camera-ready draft. Almoat $600 more will be needed for printing costs. Jay hopes to have the publication ready for the NSS Convention. Meetings with TBOUU Parks and Wildlife Department continue regarding the inspection and magenemtn of the caves on the Lakeline Mall area. If &ding for the project is decreased, The newsletter has been hindered by insufficient funding and
The Bat Publication is coming along. '2 The publication, My Daddy Was a Cam, is ready and will be for sale at the convention. -.M... ,. **+.-<-\: .8 -. kt^ ,^,y :-^ .4;>. -3. -. a Mike Walah explained that the number of requests for tours to Whirlpool Cave far cktatrips the availability of qualified volunteers. Another system must be found to compensate those individuals that have given such a great deal of time and energy coordinating and leading trips. The legal aspects of contracting "outfitters" to lead trips for compensation is being explored. The acquisition of Lost Oasis Cave was discussed. A motion was made by Jay Jorden that TCMA pursue acquisition of the Loo Oasis Cave tract pursuant to the purchase and sale agreement with the FDIC and further authorizing Carl Ponebohek to sign the agreement and documents necessary for closing. Carl seconded. Passed unanimously. The next meeting of the TCMA was set finSunday, July 12, at noon at Mike Walsh's apartment complex swimming pool. THe meeting was to be combined with aswim party and general food/BYOB bacchanal. Family members and friends were invited. : :^ -4.