The local chapter of Texas Master Naturalist hopes an upcoming discussion will help save the dwindling Texas horned lizard population.

The group will breakdown the intricacies of utilizing non-invasive genetic sampling via scat to estimate population size on Monday, March 25 at First United Methodist Church in Waxahachie.

Alexis Ackel is an environmental project manager at DFW International Airport who graduated with a master's of science from Texas Christian University. In college, she studied the institution's iconic mascot — the Texas horned lizard — in the conservational biology lab.

These diminutive dragons of Texas lore have vanished from DFW and face population declines throughout their natural range. Accurate population data are needed to ensure their effective conservation.

The free discussion will take place at 7 p.m. at 505 W. Marvin Ave. at First United Methodist Church in the Family Life Center in the Gathering Room.

Indian Trail Chapter is part of the statewide Texas Master Naturalist Volunteer Program of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.

The Indian Trails Chapter of the Texas Master Naturalist program is also offering the Linda Moxley Indian Trails Master Naturalist Scholarship in the amount of $1,000 to a graduating 2019 senior from Ellis or Navarro counties. The student is required to have plans to attend any college or university to major in the natural sciences such as horticulture, agriculture, environmental science, animal science, forestry, botany, biology and entomology.

The application deadline is April 8.

If interested in the scholarship, contact Denise King at dking@cowboybank.com.