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My laboratory focus is on discovering practical solutions to modern quail and grassland bird problems and educating students to become leaders in the wildlife field.

Kelly Reyna, Ph.D.
Director and Associate Professor, National Laboratory for Gamebird Research

  • Faculty
Biological and Environmental Sciences

As a child, Kelly Reyna, Ph.D., spent a lot of time outdoors quail hunting with his father. When he joined the U.S. Navy, he never expected to serve nine tours on a submarine and never expected to miss being outdoors so much. The outdoors becomes sacred when 800 feet underwater. When he returned, his father informed him that there were no quail left to hunt; while gone, quail and other wildlife populations crashed drastically. He wanted to know who was going to help sustain this once prevalent game bird. No longer bound by the confines of a submarine, Reyna pursued an education in wildlife and biology to make a difference. He now runs The Quail Research Laboratory at A&M-Commerce, a nationally renowned program that uses modern science to develop sustainable solutions for quail and grassland birds. Reyna accomplishes this through wildlife research, conservation and education. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, hunting and exploring wild places with his friends, family and bird dogs.

A Conversation with Dr. Reyna

What draws you to your discipline?

I have always had a passion for wildlife and to make the world a better place. So, my occupation of trying to save quail populations and habitats allows me to be involved in wildlife and hopefully improving the earth for future generations.

What would you tell a student who's thinking about attending A&M-Commerce?

The great thing about A&M-Commerce is that it's student oriented; the focus is really on the students. You get a really good education.

What has been your favorite course to teach?

That would be Human Dimensions of Wildlife. It goes beyond science and you get to know how human decisions, biases and influences affect conservation in addition to data driven decisions.

Educational Background

Research Interests

  • Quail and Grassland Bird Sustainability
  • Developmental Physiology of Gamebirds
  • Agriculture and Wildlife Integration
  • Human Dimensions of Wildlife

Awards and Honors

  • RSCA Fearless Investigation Award, Texas A&M University-Commerce
  • Eminent Faculty Scholar Award, Texas A&M University-Commerce
  • Chuck Arize Junior Faculty Award, Texas A&M University-Commerce
  • Group Achievement Award, National Bobwhite Technical Committee
  • National Legacy Landscape for Bobwhite Conservation Award, National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative

Professional Organizations

  • The Wildlife Society
  • IUCN: Galliformes Working Group
  • National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative
  • Quail Forever

Featured Courses

  • BSC 335 Wildlife Management I
  • BSC 336 Wildlife Management II
  • BSC 316 Becoming a Wildlife Professional
  • BSC 415/515 Upland Game Bird Ecology and Management
  • BSC 440/540 Human Dimensions of Wildlife

Current Projects

  • Gamebird Development in Heat Stressed Environments
  • Texas Valley Quail Translocation Project
  • Predator Avoidance Behavior of Quail
  • Texas Quail Restoration Initiative
  • Quail Tracking Improvements

Selected Publications

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