The 289 acre Heard Wildlife Sanctuary is a protected area of importance for wildlife and plant life, reserved for conservation and the educational and research programs that promote preservation of our natural resources. The Heard is home to hundreds of plants, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals.


Because most of the birds and animals that live on the Heard Wildlife Sanctuary have access to the entire preserve, there is no assurance that you will see any or all of the various species during each visit. If you do see an animal, for both your safety and the animal's, do not approach or attempt to feed it.


What may at first glance look like an open, uninhabited field is actually one of the few remaining pieces of Blackland Prairie in Collin County. Historically, the Blackland Prairie ecological area encompassed over 10 million acres. Today, it is the most-endangered large ecosystem in North America. Less than 1% remains. The plants that thrive at the Heard have few other habitats available to them. As a result, we ask that you please do not pick flowers or any other plant parts. This will also help you avoid possible contact with poison ivy!

Below, you will find links to guides that may help you in identifying various plants and animals that inhabit the sanctuary.

Winter Nature

Spring Nature

Texas rat snake image by Joan Wozny