To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society. -Theodore Roosevelt

Texas A&M University - Kingsville


Land ownership patterns in Texas help TAMUK wildlife students understand the critical role of landowners in wildlife conservation.  

TAMUK’s Wildlife Program

Texas A&M University-Kingsville’s (TAMUK) wildlife program has 150 undergraduate and 60 graduate students who learn about range and wildlife management in the southwestern United States. These students work with the program’s 17 scientists to study wildlife ecology and management, focusing on applied studies that address challenges confronting wildlife biologists. TAMUK has nationally recognized research programs in big game, upland gamebirds, wild cats, waterfowl and wetland birds, and habitat restoration. A unique aspect of TAMUK’s wildlife program is the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute (CKWRI), a privately funded entity that supports wildlife research at the university. The CKWRI ensures faculty and students have the finest research facilities, including GIS, molecular ecology, necropsy, and forage analysis labs, as well as facilities to work with captive ungulates and birds. TAMUK’s vigorous wildlife research programs provide undergraduate and graduate students innumerable opportunities for hands-on experience in a wide variety of research activities. Professional development is further promoted by the TAMUK Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society, which has been recognized as the nation’s ‘Outstanding Student Chapter’ from The Wildlife Society three times. Finally, land ownership patterns in Texas help TAMUK wildlife students understand the critical role of landowners in wildlife conservation.  Graduates take this ethic with them when they are hired by state and federal agencies, non-governmental organizations, and landowners throughout the country.  

TAMUK’s Boone and Crockett Fellowship Program

The Boone and Crockett Fellowship in Ungulate Research at Texas A&M University-Kingsville started in January 2016.  The fellowship is funded by B&C regular members from Texas and supports a graduate student studying big game in Texas.  The B&C Fellow draws on expertise of six faculty studying large mammal ecology and management, as well as range scientists, quantitative ecologists, and GIS specialists. Dr. David Hewitt, a Colorado native, leads the fellowship program.  David earned degrees in wildlife biology at Colorado State University, Washington State University, and Virginia Tech before coming to TAMUK more than 20 years ago.  He is the Stuart Stedman Chair for White-tailed Deer Research and leads TAMUK’s Deer Research Program.  His research interests include nutritional ecology, population ecology, and big game management.


Boone and Crockett Fellow Profile

Levi Heffelfinger 

Levi grew up with an early influence in wildlife science in southern Arizona. From a young age, he accompanied his dad on wildlife surveys and captures. Being an avid hunter, his appreciation for the outdoors has driven his love for wildlife research. Levi earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona and his Master’s degree from University of Nevada, Reno, where he worked with mule deer movement and demographics in the Mojave Desert. Levi’s doctoral work focuses on the influence of fragmented landscapes (energy and agricultural development) on mule deer movement and population performance. In the future, he hopes to work at the interface of management and research of large game animals.


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"The wildlife and its habitat cannot speak. So we must and we will."

-Theodore Roosevelt