Texas A&M University-Kingsville

Student Wildlife Society Bring Awards Home From State Meeting

KINGSVILLE - April 13, 2010

Contact: Julie Navejar
julie.navejar@tamuk.edu or 361.593.2590

The Texas A&M University-Kingsville student chapter of The Wildlife Society received second place in the Chapter of the Year competition. Accepting the award in the center is Marcus Blum. Presenting the award at the right, is Dr. Bart Ballard, outgoing president and associate professor in the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute.
The Texas A&M University-Kingsville student chapter of The Wildlife
Society received second place in the Chapter of the Year
competition. Accepting the award in the center is Marcus Blum.
Presenting the award at the right, is Dr. Bart Ballard, outgoing
president and associate professor in the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife
Research Institute.

Students and faculty from Texas A&M University-Kingsville attended the 46th Annual Texas Chapter of The Wildlife Society Conference recently in Galveston and came home with a suitcase full of awards including a second place finish for Student Chapter of the Year. The Kingsville chapter has won this award six times.

The top individual award of the conference also came back to Kingsville as Matthew J. Schnupp, a recent graduate from West Virginia, earned the prestigious Clarence Cottam Award, the highest honor given to a graduate student. The only other winner of this award from A&M-Kingsville in recent years was Dr. Fidel Hernandez, currently associate professor at the university. He received the award in 1999.

Schnupp, who earned his master’s degree in range and wildlife management, made his winning presentation on A Computerized, Distance-Sampling System for Use during Aerial Surveys of Wildlife Populations. The award is named for Dr. Clarence Cottam, the first director of the Rob and Bessie Welder Wildlife Foundation.

Carlos Gonzalez, a range and wildlife management major from Mexico, presented the Best Undergraduate Poster with his work entitled Does Increasing White-Tailed Deer Density and Supplemental Feeding Reduce Vegetation Biomass? Felix Ayala-Alvarez, a doctoral student from Mexico, won the Graduate Student Poster competition. His presentation was about Long Term Effects of Roller Chopping and Fire on Invasion of Exotic Grasses on Mixed Brush Plant Communities.

In the Photo and Art Contest, recent doctoral graduate John Young of Cedar Creek was second in the art category and William Colson, a master’s student from Dickinson, was third in humor.

Joey Sand of Oregon received the Sam Beasom Scholarship and Amy Hanna of Victoria received the National Wild Turkey Federation Scholarship.

The university’s Plant Identification Team placed second in overall competition. Members of the team are Ashleigh Green, a senior from Troop; Dustyn Jansky, a junior from Sweet Home; Jorge Molina, a sophomore from Mexico; and Travis Muckleroy, a junior from Jourdanton. All are range and wildlife science majors with Green double majoring in computer science. The team’s coach is Chase R. Currie, a master’s candidate in range and wildlife management from Tilden.

On the faculty side, Dr. David Hewitt, professor for the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute (CKWRI), received the Educator of the Year award and brought home first place in the electronic publication category.

Texas A&M-Kingsville had almost 40 percent of the 120 papers presented. Dr. Bart Ballard, associate professor with the CKWRI, has presided over the Texas Chapter of The Wildlife Society for the past year. The annual meeting brought an end to his term.


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