Texas Bighorn Society Research Fellowship with the Borderlands Research
Texas Bighorn Society & the Borderlands Research Institute Bighorn Research Fellowship
In January of 2011 the Texas Bighorn Society Board of Directors voted to fund a research fellowship position through the Borderlands Research Institute of Sul Ross State University to conduct research on the newly released herd of bighorns at Big Bend Ranch State Park. A commitment of $20,000.00 per year for two years was made to this project. A search for the best qualified recipient of this commitment was led by Louis Harveson of the Borderlands Research Institute and ultimately Mr. Thomas Janke, a recent graduate of Texas A&M University at Kingsville, and who is currently working on his Masters at Sul Ross was chosen.
An oversight committee panel for the project including the director of the Borderlands Research Institute, the TPWD Bighorn Sheep Program Leader, the TPWD District 1 Leader, the TPWD Black Gap, Elephant Mountain, Sierra Diablo WMA Manager, and two panelists from the Texas Bighorn Society, one of which will serve as Chairman of the Panel was appointed to provide direction for the research. Initial focus of this research will include telemetry work, habitat usage and movement research, the evaluation of travel corridors and habitats, development of GIS models/maps of habitat suitability, etc. Research updates and conclusions will be published in the TBS BIGHORN magazine and elsewhere, providing valuable insights into this latest expansion of our Texas bighorn herd!
The overriding goal of the project is to develop extensive data on this bighorn herd that will help plan future transplant efforts and to insure the success, both of this transplant and ones conducted on down the road. Moving wildlife to new habitats is always a risky and expensive proposition, and we hope to help mitigate that risk with this fellowship. Updates will posted here periodically, so check back often and see what is happing with our Texas bighorns in the Big Bend!
Current TBS Fellow
Name: Thomas Janke
Hometown: Granger, TX
2008, HS Diploma, Granger High School
2011, B.S. of Wildlife Management, Texas A&M Kingsville
2011-current, M.S. of Wildlife Management, Sul Ross University