Our Border Wildlife Study seeks to understand which species live and move across the border. The study focuses on mammals readily documented by passive infrared cameras. But birds, reptiles, invertebrates, cattle, and humans are also recorded across the 65-camera array. Three years into the study, we now have a detailed view of how the wildlife community is distributed across the 30-mile stretch of border spanning the Patagonia Mountains, San Rafael Valley, and Huachuca Mountains. As the cameras continue taking photographs 24/7, the number of species we document grows. We’re also seeing trends for when and where wildlife show up across the seasons. The results below cover our first three years and will be updated moving forward.
Our species tally includes all animals identified to the species level and animals identified to unique taxonomic groups such as genus or family. Small wildlife are often difficult to identify to species from photos alone, so we identify them to the extent possible. For example, we can identify woodrats (Neotoma spp.) to genus but not species level from photos. So, we classify all woodrat detections as Neotoma spp. and consider this one unique taxa in our tally, even though the number of woodrat species may be greater.