Thursday, August 3, 2017

Proposed wall along US-Mexico border puts endangered species at risk

Proposed wall along US-Mexico border
The wall built by the US along its border with Mexico would put more than 100 endangered species at risk, according to a news release published on Wednesday by Rice University of Texas.

Scott Egan, an assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at Rice University, said the wall would change the balance of nature along the border area, putting wildlife at risk, including more than 100 endangered species.

Egan said there are two important phenomena to consider when building any type of barrier that interrupts animal or plant movement. First, a barrier like this would cause a population bottleneck, and second, a barrier to the natural exchange of genes would lead to inbreeding depression or the decreased fitness of the population.

In addition to the risks to plants and animals, Egan said evidence also reveals negative impacts on humans as well.

Furthermore, Egan is concerned by two other potential effects: cutting off natural migration routes and future range expansions driven by climate change.

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