I am sharing the sad news that Bev Clauser of Erath County passed away on Monday, June 14, 2017. Many of our current Fort Worth Audubon community knew Bev and her husband Lee from our annual field trips to their Longhollow Ranch on Chalk Mountain.

I have only known the Clausers for the last 17 years. I would see them at our monthly meetings after I joined FWAS in 1999, and was introduced to Bev and Lee’s warm hospitality on my first visit to Chalk Mountain in 2001. But over the years I learned that Bev and Lee were active FWAS members long before they moved to Chalk Mountain. When Bev and Lee still lived in Fort Worth, they were better known to many outside of the birding community for their volunteer wildlife rehabilitation activities. On a few of our birding visits to the ranch, when bad weather forced us to shorten our time in the field, Lee would share one of his slide show presentations of their rehabilitation work: photos of the room they converted into a clinic in their Fort Worth home; the many feathered patients they nursed back to health; the nestlings (some from eggs) that people would find and bring to Bev. After retirement in the mid-1990s, the Clausers moved to Longhollow Ranch in Erath County. Bev shared a story one time about getting a call from the folks who purchased their Fort Worth home to ask why strangers would leave a shoe box with an injured animal on their front porch for several months after they moved.

Bob Scott has been an active FWAS member from the 1980s to now. He shared how Bev would never turn away any bird species that was hurt, from the lowly House Sparrow to beautiful raptors. He added that Bev cared and it really showed in her rehabilitation work. Bob told me he also remembers that Bev was always cheerful and always good for a big hug that all appreciated.

Glenda Keilstrup stayed at the little cabin at Longhollow Ranch several times. She remembers that you always felt like family when you stayed there.

Charley Amos who was a board member in the early '90s recounted how friendly and welcoming Bev was.

From the very start, Bev and Lee opened their home at Longhollow Ranch and welcomed birders to visit their property and the nearby Brown property about 12 miles west of Glen Rose. With Lee's help, FWAS and Audubon Texas was able to register the Brown property registered as a Global Important Bird Area for the Golden-cheek Warblers and Black-capped Vireos nesting there. I have lead TOS Winter Meeting fieldtrips to Longhollow Ranch on two occasions, and I have continued a yearly FWAS springtime visit for over 15 years. Bev and Lee would often come and join us at the little cabin to share lunch with the groups. Bev would tell us what she has been seeing on the ranch and then listen to our own stories about what we had seen that day. They both made us all feel welcomed by their warm stories and hospitality. Bev was most concerned for how few Loggerhead Shrikes were being seen near their ranch and would ask me every year if we were seeing a decrease of shrikes in other areas.

When Lee called me Tuesday morning he told me there will not be a funeral or memorial service. Lee asked that I tell folks who wish to make a remembrance donation in Bev's name to please make a gift to the:
Hico Activity Center
Attn: Jill Campbell, Director
411 N. Mesquite St., Hico, TX 76457
Make the check payable to the Hico Activity Center.

If you have a remembrance to share, please do so. If you are not registered to post, send your story to me and I will add it here.