Reuters: Border Fence Will Harm Butterflies

July 26th, 2007 12:25 PM

With the same sentiment that originally brought the spotted owl to fame, Reuters is now concerned that the proposed border fence between the U.S. and Mexico will harm butterflies and other creatures (see also Joe Steigerwald's prior post).

Upon further examination of its July 25 article, Reuters has concentrated on a realtively small forest area in Texas - described as being a "few miles" along the border - which is the habitat for ocelots (wild cats), birds, and over 300 species of butterflies.

According to the Reuters article,

"... conservationists are concerned that a planned border security fence to stem illegal immigration from Mexico could cut this delicate area up even more and possibly remove the corridor of vital riverbank habitat that remains.

"We know as habitats become fragments whether by roads, fences or walls animals become much less capable of roaming widely," said Dr. Joel Berger, a senior scientist with the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society.

"As these restrictions occur animals become isolated and with isolation the risks of local extinctions greatly increase," he said.

The predictable conclusion is that animal "habitats are being diced up by human activities."  

So apparently we should just go back to the drawing board on illegal immigration - as the cost of building a border fence is just too high. Or, maybe as a compromise, we could just leave a 5-mile tree-lined opening in the border fence, for the sake of conservation of course.

Reuters does not touch upon the obvious questions that come to mind, such as: How does the construction of a fence wipe out an entire forest ? Or - can the fence be built behind this very important forest ? Or - how does a fence prevent birds and butterflies from roaming freely ? These questions, however, do not serve the environmental alarmism of the Reuters columnist.