Mieke Titulaer, PhD
Research Scientist
Borderlands Research Institute
Sul Ross State University
PO Box C-21
Alpine, TX 79832
Office phone: (432) 837-8828

Research Specialties

Grassland Bird Habitat Relationships
Big Game Ecology
Management and Conservation
Upland Gamebird Ecology
Wintering Grassland Birds
Habitat Management


Dr. Mieke Titulaer is a research scientist with the Borderlands Research Institute. She has a broad interest in behavioral ecology and bird conservation. Her main research focus is on conservation of grassland songbirds that overwinter in the Chihuahuan Desert. Her research interests include grassland bird-habitat relationships and the influence of habitat alterations and disturbances such as invasive exotic grasses, shrub encroachment and grazing management on grassland bird populations.

In 2015 Mieke received her Ph.D. in Natural Resource Management from Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua in Mexico. For her dissertation, she studied the winter diet of grassland sparrows in the Chihuahuan Desert of northern Mexico. She investigated seed selection in the field, and looked at possible effects of invasive exotic grasses on wintering grassland sparrows in captive bird experiments.

She graduated in 2005 with a BS in Psychology from Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands, and in 2008 with a BS in Animal Management from the University of Applied Sciences Van Hall-Larenstein in the Netherlands. She received an MS in Animal Sciences from Wageningen University, the Netherlands, in 2010. For her master’s thesis she performed research on personality and cognition in the great tit (Parus major) at the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW). After receiving her MS she performed research at NIOO-KNAW on the effects of artificial light on reproduction and survival of songbirds.

Research Specialties

Plant Community and Rangeland Ecology
Ecology and Managment of Large Mammals
Outreach and Extension

Selected Publications

Titulaer, M. A. Melgoza-Castillo, A. Macias-Duarte and A. O. Panjabi. 2017. Seed size, bill volume and handling time influence preference for native and non-native grass seeds in three declining sparrows. Wilson Journal of Ornithology. Accepted.

Titulaer, M., A. Melgoza-Castillo, A. O. Panjabi, A. Sánchez-Flores, J. H. Martínez-Guerrero, A. Macías-Duarte, and J. A. Fernández-Fernández. 2017. Molecular analysis of stomach contents reveals important grass seeds in the winter diet of two declining grassland bird species. PLOS ONE, 12: e0189695. DOI: 10.17605/OSF.IO/AYJNS.

Titulaer, M., K. Spoelstra, C. Y. M. J. G. Lange and M. E. Visser. 2012. Activity patterns during food provisioning are affected by artificial light in free living great tits (Parus major). PLOS ONE, 7: e37377. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0037377.

Titulaer, M., K. van Oers and M. Naguib. 2012. Personality affects learning performance in difficult tasks in a sex-dependent way. Animal Behaviour, 83: 723-730.