Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Dr. Richard J. Kline

Second Advisor

Dr. Christopher Gabler

Third Advisor

Dr. John H. Young, Jr.


Movement is a key component of survival for many species, often causing wildlife to cross heavily trafficked highways, resulting in road mortalities. In Cameron County, Texas, ten wildlife exits (WE) were installed along State Highway 100 in conjunction with existing mitigation structures to provide species such as the U.S. endangered ocelot with a safe option to escape the right-of-way (ROW). The objectives of this study were to determine effectiveness and species usage, as well as to estimate the percentage of wildlife that crossed back into the habitat via a WE. Results of this study showed that all six target species used a WE to return to the habitat. Approximately 43% of bobcats observed, a surrogate species for the ocelot, used a WE to escape the ROW. Information on the effectiveness of these novel structures will be useful in the development of future WE to optimize placement and design.


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