Field Notes

Acabamos de Tener Nuestro Primer Avistamiento de Serpientes en el Estudio de Vida Silvestre Fronteriza

September 16, 2021

El 11 de julio, casi 16 meses después del inicio de nuestro Estudio de Vida Silvestre Fronteriza, nuestras cámaras trampa detectaron la primera serpiente del estudio: ¡una Culebra chirrionera de Sonora (Masticophis bilineatus)!  Pie de foto: Una serpiente Chirrionera de Sonora deslizándose por un tronco caído (ve el lado izquierdo del tronco). La Culebra chirrionera de Sonora es una especie común que se ve en la región de las Islas del…
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Watch Six Weeks of Wildlife at the Border during Monsoon

August 26, 2021

I remember how loud the crunchy sound of extremely dry grass underfoot was in the San Rafael Valley near the U.S.-Mexico border earlier this year. For months, we had watched the decline in vegetation across the region during the exceptional drought of the last few years. With fewer and fewer wildlife detections on our Border…
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Monsoons, Meso-carnivores, and Bears, Oh My! Two Months of Camera Data from the Coronado National Memorial

August 11, 2021

​A little over two months ago, Sky Island Alliance staff and intrepid volunteers extended our Border Wildlife Study east into the Coronado National Memorial in the Huachuca Mountains with Block 17. When we placed these cameras, the region was dry as a bone. With all the drought-deciduous oaks leaves dropping their leaves and the grass…
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We just had Our First Border Wildlife Study Snake Sighting

August 10, 2021

On July 11, almost 16 months after the start of our Border Wildlife Study, our trail cameras detected the first snake of the study — a Sonoran whipsnake (Masticophis bilineatus)! Photo caption: A Sonoran whipsnake slithering down a fallen log (see left side of log). The Sonoran whipsnake is a common species seen in the…
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Photo Gallery: Wildlife and Weather in the Sky Island Region

July 13, 2021

Humans aren’t the only ones who enjoy a mountain sunset or a cool, misty afternoon. Through our array of Border Wildlife Study cameras, we’ve been lucky enough to detect various wildlife species hunting, playing, foraging, and migrating beneath a backdrop of incredible weather conditions. We’ve even captured breathtaking moments where nature itself used wind, rain,…
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Notes from the Field: Our First Look at the Wildlife in Coronado National Memorial

July 7, 2021

Last month, we placed five new wildlife cameras in Coronado National Memorial. These camera additions extend our Border Wildlife Study eastward into the zone where the border wall was extended by the Trump administration in 2020. The cameras are placed within oak woodland habitat on the southern steep slopes of the Huachuca Mountains—about 1.5 miles…
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Notes from the Field: The Great Porcupine Search

June 10, 2021

Photo Caption: A North American porcupine detected on one of our Border Wildlife Study cameras. Thank you to our wonderful volunteer, Alicia Stout, for this engaging blog post she wrote on her recent wildlife adventures with SIA staff in the field! If you have similar stories of volunteering with us, please send a write-up to…
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Border Wildlife Study: People on Our Trail Cameras

May 24, 2021

Photo caption: A white-tailed deer rests near an oak tree (left) while an orange construction vehicle drives quickly along a the border road during active wall construction in the Huachuca Mountains in January 2021. Border Wildlife Study cameras document so much more than just wild animals on the move at the border. They document weather,…
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Border Wildlife Study: Vegetation and Drought in the Borderlands

May 21, 2021

For the last year, the Border Wildlife Study cameras have documented an amazing array of wildlife species across the San Rafael Valley and the Patagonia and Huachuca Mountains that flank it on the west and east. One of the interesting questions of our study is: How does the wildlife community vary across the different habitats…
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Estudio de la vida silvestre fronteriza: un año de conteo de especies

May 12, 2021

La región de las Islas del Cielo alberga una impresionante diversidad de especies de vida silvestre en este paisaje accidentado donde se entremezclan especies templadas y tropicales. Para documentar la verdadera diversidad de un lugar, se debe emplear una amplia gama de métodos, de los cuales cada uno está diseñado para detectar una especie o…
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