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No Border Wall: Protect Our Borderlands from President Trump

This wide shot shows a narrow dirt pathway curving off to the right in the lower right corner of the frame. The rest of the frame is taken up by towering mesquite trees, with tendrils of greenish-gray Spanish moss hanging off nearly every branch.
Spanish moss hangs from tall mesquite trees at Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, which would be walled off from the public if the wall were built according to plan. Photo: Katy Schaffer

The borderlands are one of the most biologically diverse regions in the continent, containing critically important habitat for many iconic North American species, including jaguar and black bear. Despite the importance of this region to wildlife conservation and connectivity, however, the border policies of the current administration seek to undermine decades of work by federal and state agencies on both sides of the border that have protected this special area.

Across the border, there are already over 650 miles of fencing and barriers. While not effective in stopping drug smuggling and human trafficking, the existing border fencing has been effective in preventing wildlife movement and migration – putting the future of wide-ranging animals like jaguar, Sonoran pronghorn and desert bighorn sheep in jeopardy. These particular species depend on a permeable U.S.-Mexico border for their survival.

Congress should focus on building partnerships with our neighboring countries to protect wildlife and create a better future for all people across North America, not on building walls.