One of the principle goals of the GEWMA is to provide a site where university-based research of wildlife populations and habitat may be conducted under controlled conditions. Through such studies biologists hope to gain a better understanding of the interrelationships between native wildlife species, domestic livestock, management practices, and habitat resources. This will enable biologists to make recommendations for a sound multiple-use management program tailored to the Post Oak Savannah region of Texas. As of 2010, 35 approved research projects have been conducted on the GEWMA involving such topics as:
- White-tailed deer aging techniques
- Factors affecting white-tailed deer fawn survival
- Comparisons of feeding habits between white-tailed deer and cattle
- Site-specific competition between feral hogs and white-tailed deer
- Effects of selective clearing on wildlife habitat
- Controlled burning to improve woodland habitat for wildlife
- Diet and genetics in inland populations of American alligators
Current projects are investigations into the impacts of different habitat management techniques on the flora and fauna of our upland Savannah Restoration Site and the area’s bog communities.
In addition to formal research projects conducted by universities, GEWMA provides a site for TPWD biologists to demonstrate and fine-tune management practices for east Texas. Landowners, property managers, university groups, and other interested individuals can see the results of management practices such as prescribed burning, brush treatments, native grass restoration, and other management practices with their own eyes.
The GEWMA’s Small Acreage Demonstration Area (SADA) provides East Texas landowners with a look at how important management practices can be applied at a smaller scale. This 30-acre demonstration area is managed using equipment available to most landowners such as a small tractor, mower, disk, ATVs and ATV sprayers, handtools, and manual labor. All management practices are from the Comprehensive Wildlife Management Planning Guidelines for the Post Oak Savannah available from TPWD and conducted at a level that would qualify for the 1-d-1w Wildlife Management Open Spaces Tax Valuation.