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Biodiversity Education Center

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​367 Freeport Pkwy.​​
Coppell, TX 75019
972-304-3​581
Please leave a detailed message including your name and phone number. Many calls to the City of Coppell are forwarded to offsite phones. As a result, staff may be unable to return calls if you do not leave contact information.​ 


The Biodiversity Education Center, Nature Explore play space, and the public restroom at the Biodiversity Education Center are closed to the public until further notice. All rentals and education program requests are also suspended at this time. 

Coppell Nature Park remains open, including the trails. We urge you to continue to practice social distancing measures when in the park on the trails. ​


Click here for the latest information about closures and community impacts. Click here for the Coppell Parks & Recreation Re-Opening Plan.


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The Biodiversity Education Center works collectively with partner organizations such as Friends of the Coppell Nature Park, City of Coppell, Keep Coppell Beautiful, Coppell ISD, and Northlake College to offer exceptional environmental education programs to the community.​


 

Visitor Hours*

Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday 9:00am-12:00pm
Wednesday 3:00pm-6:00pm
*Also open during scheduled programs

coppell nature park

 
Coppell Nature Park is 66 acres of natural space that features three types of habitat for local wildlife: Cross Timbers forest, Blackland prairie, and Cottonwood Creek. Always think SAFETY FIRST while exploring nature. Stay on the trails, wear weather-appropriate attire and have plenty of water. Be respectful of the environment and do not litter. Enjoy observing, but avoid disturbing, destroying, or removing what you find. Unlike domestic pets, wild animals generally avoid interaction with humans and will flee if given the opportunity. If you encounter a wild animal, remain calm and quiet and do not provoke it. Stay up to date with the Friends of the Coppell Nature Park via their website or Facebook.  Check out their lecture series or sign up to help maintain the trails each third Saturday of the month. 

 

 

​​Classes & Programs

The Biodiversity Education Center creates an approachable bridge to the outdoors through natural space, the Nature Explore Area, and hands-on environmental education programs. Participants of education programs develop a deeper connection to their environment as they learn about local flora, fauna, natural processes and sustainability issues. A wide variety of community programs are offered for all ages including annual festivals, environmental education and gardening classes, school field trips, nature walks and community improvement days. 

 Click on an image below to view class offerings
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​​Self-Guided education activities

 
​Fun at home or in your neighborhood!
          


​Citizen Science

What is it? 

Citizen science is a collaboration between professional scientists and any member of the general public who is interested in protecting our environment. Acting as citizen scientists, people of all ages, experience levels, and interests work to help gather different kinds of data about nature. This data is used to advance research, advise land managers, and inform policy makers. Whether it's catching butterflies, photographing landscapes, surveying birds in your backyard or any of our other engaging opportunities, citizen scientists help us to understand our climate, the health of our natural resources, and the quality of our wildlife habitats.

Who can participate? 

Short answer: anyone and everyone! Citizen science is not defined by age, gender, racial identity, citizenship status, education, or physical ability. Citizen scientists are people like you, your neighbors and fellow community members, your children and your friends.

How do I get involved? 

In today's technologically advanced society you can help researchers across the globe collect valuable scientific data with your phone! The following links describe different citizen science projects that you can participate in with the swipe of your finger. 

iNaturalist, Project Noah, Seek or Map of LifeHelp researchers document biological diversity by photographing what you see in nature:

eBirdDocument birds you observe in real-time and contribute to avian research, education and conservation:

Project BudBurstHelp researchers gather data on plants throughout the seasons to increase appreciation of plants and the natural world and inspire conservation action

Journey NorthHelp researchers study seasonal migration by documenting your Monarch butterfly sightings as well as other migratory species

City Nature Challenge​ - This is an annual, global event where cities around the world compete to involve the most participants to make the most observations of the local wildlife species ​​


 

facilitated education programs​

The BEC offers a variety of group learning activities that help students connect with nature. These include themed lessons, hikes and games. You may find descriptions of each activity in the lists below. Most activities are about 30 minutes in duration and accommodate up to 20 students. The cost is $60 for each 30-minute activity. They can be used individually or in combination to accommodate a larger group or longer program. BEC can accommodate a maximum of 6 simultaneous activities. Activities are facilitated by BEC staff or trained volunteers, and a minimum number of adult chaperones from the visiting group is required. If your group would like to request a facilitated program, please click the BEC education​​​ program request form. Program times and activities may be limited by staff/trained volunteer availability. After we have received the completed request form, BEC staff will be in contact with further instructions to secure a reservation. Please note the request must be submitted at least 30 days prior to the requested program date. If payment is not received within 10 business days after the emailed confirmation, your reservation will be canceled.​

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Did you know? The BEC offers joint field trips with Life Safety Park. For more information, visit the LSP website: www.lifesafetypark.org

 
 

 
junior master naturalist
Inspired by one of our own volunteers, the Biodiversity Education Center, now offers the Junior Master Naturalist program to 4th through 6th graders. This program is modeled after curriculum from the Perot Museum. The experience combines hands-on explorations and outdoor adventures to help young people develop a deeper appreciation and understanding of Texas ecosystems. 

Click on the logo below to see the full calendar and register. Students meet two times each month throughout the school year. Registration is open July - September.  



 
Scout Rentals and Programs

 
Facilitated education programs are offered to local Scout troops at a discounted rate of $25 per activity. These are available separately or in combination with a facility rental to enrich troop meetings. For an education program only, please complete a BEC education​​​ program request form. To add an education activity to a facility rental, please select the activty of your choice on the BEC Reservation For​m. Please note outdoor activities are only available during daylight hours and requests for education activities must be received at least 3 weeks prior to the requested event date.
 

 

BUILDING RESERVATIONS

The Biodiversity Education Center building is available to rent as a meeting space for Coppell Non-profit 501(c) 3 Organizations. Youth organizations such as Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, 4H and American Heritage Girls are asked to submit requests using the non-profit form. UPDATE: Effective January 2020, all groups must supply a building reservation fee: $25 per 2 hours. Submit completed request forms to bec@coppelltx.gov at least 72 hours prior to requested reservation time. Building availability is subject to BEC educational program schedule.

BEC Reservation For​m​​​​​​​​


 

GREEN BUILDING DESIGN  

The Biodiversity Education Center was designed with "green" construction features. The building receives power from 96 solar panels and includes a cistern that captures 9,400 gallons of rainwater. Landscaping around the Center features Texas native and adaptive plants, reducing water consumption and providing a habitat for wildlife such as butterflies, hummingbirds​, birds, and bees. ​


VOLUNTEER WITH US!

 The quality programming offered through the Biodiversity Education Center is made possible by a strong community of volunteers. There are a variety of volunteer opportunities available for teens and adults. You may view some of these opportunities by clicking the links below to the online volunteer portal. Please contact any staff member for further assistance. 

Adult Volunteers (Ages 18 and older)

​Youth Volunteers (Ages 13 - 17 years old)

If you are interested in volunteering with the Biodiversity Education Center, we invite you to attend volunteer orientation. Orientation is offered two times a year in the Fall and Spring. During orientation, you will learn about Coppell Nature Park, the Biodiversity Education Center, the programs offered to the community through this facility, and the impact volunteers have on the community. We hope this will help you decide which volunteer opportunities best fit your schedule, interests, and skills. You will also learn how to utilize the online volunteer system to create a profile, register for activities, and log hours.

Docents are a committed group of adult volunteers who receive training to take a leadership role with activities such as field trips, guided hikes, and group service activities.  Docent training is offered two times each year in the Fall and Spring.​

​To see other eco-friendly initiatives sponsored by the City of Coppell, visit​​ coppelltx.gov/sustainability.
eco coppell wcoc.jpg
​The Biodiversity Education Center is a Texas Aquatic Science certified field site. 
Visit texasaquaticscience.org to learn more!
eco coppell wcoc.jpg