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Scholarship Recipient

Levi Heffelfinger

Levi Heffelfinger

Levi Heffelfinger

Texas A&M University-Kingsville

Year Received: 2018

Ph.D. Student in Wildlife Science

The Influence of Agriculture on Mule Deer Demographics and Movement

Levi was raised in Tucson, AZ where he found a passion for hunting, fishing, and everything
outdoors. After receiving a B.S. at the University of Arizona, he went on to the University of Nevada,
Reno to begin a M.S. There, he worked on a population of mule deer on the Mojave National Preserve
where he evaluated how environmental factors influenced fawn survival and female resource selection.
He is currently working on his Ph.D. at the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute in Kingsville, TX.

Levi’s current research is focused on learning how the influence of agriculture affects mule deer
population parameters in the Texas Panhandle. Mule deer numbers have increased in the Panhandle
region over the past several decades. However, the amount of native rangeland converted to cropland
has also continued to increase in the region. This research will focus on placing GPS radio collars on
adult bucks, does, and fawns among three study sites across the Panhandle. The research seeks to
understand when they use cropland, how often, and how the use of agriculture affects survival, size, and
antler growth within these populations of mule deer. This will prove beneficial to the management and
conservation of the species moving forward.

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