Houston Urban Wildlife Project

September 14, 2023
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What is it?

The Houston Urban Wildlife Project (HUWP) is a program that was born around 2000 when collaborating on a project with colleagues from Rice University regarding the effect of bayou channelization upon urban avian diversity.  What has taken place since is a diverse array of urban wildlife projects, primarily research.  Coordinated by Daniel Brooks, Ph.D. the bulk of these studies focuses upon: invasive and aquatic birds, as well as Free-tailed bats (Tadarida mexicanus) and carnivores (see below).

Why is this important?

There are many species of animals that we share our neighborhoods with.  Not only is documentation of urban wildlife interesting, but their interactions with urban environments, as well as other species within those environments, is compelling.  Publishing articles about urban wildlife here in the Bayou city divulges the manner in which certain species are able to adapt and thrive despite their strange new habitat (considering deep time).  Simply put – urban wildlife research promotes keeping biodiversity and ecosystem function intact, while fomenting positive associations between people and wildlife.

Citizen science   One of the best ways to get involved is through Citizen Science– research projects that rely on…

Nutria and Beaver niche partitioning at an urban pond Carnivore Projects Range expansion and ecology of Ringtail Albinsm in Raccoons …

Invasive Bird Projects The Texas Invasive Bird Project (TIBP) has been ongoing since 2008, resulting in many studies of invasive…

Finding Wildlife In The Burbs

Where to find wildlife in the ‘burbs Wildlife is all around us.  Every once in a while when driving at…

HUWP Image Gallery

The Houston Urban Wildlife Project (HUWP) is a program that was born around 2000 when collaborating on a project with…


2004 – Tickled pink by a Flamingo’s visit 2008 – Ikester – what a mess of things you made! 2012…

Other Projects

Other Urban Wildlife Projects in the Bayou City Hidden Life of Houston CBC Citizen Science Garden

Authored By Dan Brooks

As the HMNS Curator of Vertebrate Zoology, Dr. Dan is known as ‘the guy with the most backbone’ in the museum! He curates four permanent exhibits at the museum, where he was worked as a full-time staff member since 1999. He has described 10 new species to date, and is very active in local (hmns.org/houstonwildlife) and international (Southeast Asia and Latin America) wildlife research, especially with gamebirds. Afflicted with the inability to ‘shake the nature bug’, when he’s not at work in the museum, one of his favorite things to do is scouting and exploring the great outdoors with his family.

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