In one of the most ecologically diverse corridors in North America, where both black bears and jaguars coexist, an environmental nonprofit is studying wildlife movement in southern Arizona’s borderlands and has found a decrease in certain mammal species, prompting questions about what is going on.
Driving through the grasslands just north of the border, a sea of gold and white-hued grasses spread out for miles one morning in late April. Eamon Harrity, the wildlife project manager at Sky Island Alliance traveling to the organization’s motion-censored cameras, pointed out pronghorn antelope in the distance and a virtual Border Patrol surveillance tower amidst the natural landscape.
In southern Arizona’s borderlands exists a biodiverse area where mountains rise up out of the desert and where the desert sits next to oak woodlands and grasslands, among other habitats. The area is home to more than 7,000 species of plants and animals, which includes half of the birds in North America, according to the Sky Island Alliance.