A female bobcat who lives along the border between the U.S. and Mexico has figured out where she can pass and where she can’t.
This bobcat lives near the fence that already stretches intermittently across 650 miles from California to Texas, and was mandated under President George W. Bush. She was collared for tracking by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service(USFWS), and roams an estimated 730 acres along both sides of the fence.
But, if elected, Republican candidate Donald Trump proposes to expand this barrier to keep illegal immigrants out of the U.S. “A nation without borders is not a nation. There must be a wall across the southern border,” Trump writes. He claims he will force Mexico to pay for the wall.
If this expansion of the barrier were to happen, the environmental effects would be devastating: This particular bobcat’s very survival could be compromised — along with the lives of thousands of other wild animals, including endangered species, who call the contentious area home.
“It is important to ensure that animals have the ability to travel across wild landscapes,” David Steen, assistant research professor at Auburn University Museum of Natural History, told The Dodo. “Movement is important to maintain gene flow among populations and it can also help species recolonize areas where they’ve gone locally extinct.”