Border walls are bad for wildlife

Exposing the Big Game

November 1, 2016

In 1996, Botswana erected an 83-mile fence along its border with Namibia. The goal was to protect domestic cattle from the highly contagious foot-and-mouth disease. Within a year, though, the barrier had snared five giraffes, one elephant, several antelopes and numerous other wild animals.

In the 20 years since, border barriers have proliferated to unprecedented levels — and become one of presidential candidate Donald Trump’s favorite talking points. But while attention has focused on the human consequences of a more bordered world, the effect on wildlife is also dramatic.

Trump has proposed sealing off the U.S.-Mexico frontier with a “great” expansion of the current wall, which spans about 650 miles of the…

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7 thoughts on “Border walls are bad for wildlife

  1. Absolutely! The predators, especially, need room and corridors to move long distances for food and mates.

    I doubt if the well-being of the wild ones will get much consideration in the plans for the wall.

  2. The lone jaguar is in dire danger of being shot or trapped by some yahoo rancher/hunter down there, which has happened to the Mexican wolf and other wolves who are migrating. Down in southern NM, the word is out among the ranchers, who wantonly slaughter any “predators” they see. It is interesting though, that some of these ranchers down there are actually not too crazy about Trump’s wet-dream wall. Perhaps, if this wall is started, it will have to be “dismantled” as it is built!

  3. The idea of transnational wildlife corridors has been toyed with for a number of years now. They can be usefull in some parts of the world.

    • Yes, here in the Western U.S. there have been plans to establish “wildlife corridors” for animals to migrate, travel to other areas. Unfortunately, the Livestock Industry has been a vehement opponent of such ideas. This certainly would give wildlife a better chance. In Yellowstone National Park, grizzly bears, wolves, wolverines and other wild animals try to migrate outward, but the park is largely surrounded by livestock grazing, which is deadly to wildlife.

  4. The livestock industry is against it, and helped along by weak government agencies. A wall is a terrible, ugly idea. We’ve destroyed enough wildlife for our own ideas, I think. Plus it does not give the impression of a free country. We should move to modern times – I’ve heard drones being mentioned. If the system is flawed, fix it. Most people travel through the checkpoints anyway, and no one should be going through any other way. I’m glad that I have seen what that is like.

    • I say this as a person with immigrants on both sides of my family who got the boot from their home countries and didn’t come voluntarily – Scotland on one side and Syrian Christian on the other.

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