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United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) 2013


Wildlife Ecology Texas

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Research, Education & Economics Information System (REEIS)


Identification : TEX08483

Pays : Etats Unis

Durée : Feb 18, 2013 à Feb 17, 2018

Domaine : ecology ; wildlife ; range land ; management ; climate change ; animal productivity ; animal nutrition ; texas


A sound understanding of responses of wildlife to habitat and environmental change and to wildlife management practices based on ecological principals is necessary to maintain long-term viability of natural populations and support a thriving wildlife utilization industry. The objectives of our research are : 1. To understand how wildlife populations respond to natural and anthropogenic environmental changes in order to improve land management for sustainable production of key wildlife species. 2. To understand the effects of changes in resource distribution within habitats on nutrition, health, and productivity of wildlife. 3. To deliver information on wildlife management techniques most appropriate to maintain diverse and sustainable quality wildlife populations in a changing climate. We aim to increase the power to predict the lasting outcomes of current wildlife management techniques and the ecological consequences of natural and anthropogenic environmental change in semi-arid environments. Research outputs will help wildlife managers gauge the cost effectiveness of land management treatments and supplemental feeding programs to enhance wildlife production and to select the best course of action. We also aim to limit unfavorable interactions between species, such as competition for resources, the risk of disease transfer and undue levels of predation, through scientific habitat management and understanding of the interactions between animal species, and between species and their environment. Most of our research is conducted on private ranches within south Texas. Interaction and involvement of the landowners and managers in the research is an important aspect of this project because it expedites adoption of new ideas and techniques by the industry. We will also involve graduate students in the research to train them as the next generation of wildlife managers and ecologists. Information will be widely disseminated by scientific publications, presentations at International, National and State scientific meetings, through cooperative interaction with A&M AgriLife Extension Service and lay presentations.

We will use Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to determine the spatial responses of animals to landscape changes brought about by land management activities such as prescribed fire, mechanical brush clearance and range restoration, as well as less controlled events such as wild fire and habitat fragmentation due to commercial land development. The distribution of larger animals will be tracked through use of Global Positioning System (GPS) collars, while population responses of smaller species will be monitored by survey methods. GIS, GPS and animal survey techniques will also be used to assess resource selection by animals and rates of interaction between animals that ultimately affect animal health and productivity. Research will also involve nutritional studies and health screening on free ranging animals as this pertains to wildlife productivity and influences on livestock production. Some studies will also incorporated use of captive/tame wildlife to provide controlled experimentation on animal nutrition that is difficult to accomplish with wild populations. Evaluation of wildlife management techniques ranging from land treatments to herd management will be conducted with participation of local landowners, graduate students and support from the animal nutrition industry. We find that active participation in research speeds the adaption of new technologies and ideas into the commercial and public sectors. Evaluation of the acceptance of new ideas will be measured by their acceptance and use in the wildlife industry. Dissemination of results will be by publication in scientific journals, and presentations at conferences, Extension meetings and local organizations

Présentation : USDA

Page publiée le 9 octobre 2015, mise à jour le 22 novembre 2017