Category: Project Spotlight



The Borderlands Research Institute is conducting extensive research on a private ranch in Brewster County, Texas, where nearly 150 trincheras have been strategically implemented. This study assesses soil accumulation at trinchera sites over two years during the monsoon season.
February 25, 2024outofnowhere


Given the importance of Big Bend National Park for biodiversity and habitat protection in the Trans-Pecos ecoregion, the distribution of species in the park has been well-studied. However, it is also important to monitor changes in the distribution of species over time and to gauge what factors within the park ... Read More
October 26, 2022Shawna Graves


Desert bighorn sheep and mule deer have experienced widespread declines in distribution and abundance in the Texas Trans-Pecos. While translocation efforts have been successful in reviving these species, the ongoing expansion of aoudad populations across the region have raised concern for native species survival. Similarities in physiology and native range ... Read More
February 22, 2022Stacey Dewald


As desert bighorn sheep restoration continues in Texas, desert bighorn sheep are now potentially threatened by aoudad distribution and population increase. This study evaluated the use of artificial water sources, documenting seasonal and temporal usage by aoudad and desert bighorn in a coexisting area.
July 28, 2021Julie Rumbelow
Cattle on p dog town Marathon Grassland Preserve


The black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) plays an important role in maintaining ecological integrity in western grasslands. A 2010 Texas Parks and Wildlife Department inventory of prairie dog populations revealed that their range has decreased in the southern and western boundaries of their historical range within the Trans-Pecos region.
May 27, 2021Stacey Dewald
3 quail eyeworms


Populations of quails in Texas have declined over the past few decades due primarily to habitat loss. However, the role that parasites may play in such declines has been largely dismissed. To help address this, we collected scaled quail (Callipepla squamata), Gambel’s quail (Callipepla gambellii), and Montezuma quail (Cyrtonyx montezumae) ... Read More
November 9, 2020Stacey Dewald
20190429_135406 scaled quail captured during project_cropped


The Trans-Pecos region of Texas has four species of quail: the scaled quail, Gambel’s quail, Montezuma (Mearns) quail, and northern bobwhite. Currently, little research regarding parasites has been conducted in the Trans-Pecos; however, it is thought that parasites could be influencing range, health, reproduction, and survival of scaled quail, Gambel’s ... Read More
July 6, 2020Stacey Dewald


For many years BRI has partnered with TPWD to study translocated desert bighorn sheep populations throughout the Trans-Pecos. With this project we are looking into the differences among resident, hard-, and soft-released populations...
January 8, 2020Julie Rumbelow


With partners from Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, and the Dixon Water Foundation, BRI has been studying two grassland-obligate bird species, Baird’s sparrow and grasshopper sparrow...
November 4, 2019Julie Rumbelow


To understand why mule deer numbers struggled, researchers with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Cemex and Borderlands Research Institute conducted a restoration project in the BGWMA and a neighboring ranch...
October 4, 2019Patricia Harveson