Heartbreaking Butterfly Center Video Shows Bobcat At Risk From Border Wall
The National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas is not only a sanctuary to some 200 species of butterflies, it’s also a home for the area’s other unique wildlife.
With border wall construction imminent, the center posted a two-minute video featuring a bobcat living in the facility’s southern 70 acres that will be cut off by the barrier once it’s built.
[facebook https://www.facebook.com/natbutterflies/videos/250932149165313/ expand=1]
“Little does this bobcat know,” the center states in the video, “its ability to hunt, find shelter, find a mate and raise its young is about to be drastically affected by a concrete and steel wall it will never be able to get past.”
What’s more, the center noted, the floodlights that will be installed along the wall will “light up the entire area like a war zone all night long.”
The underlying message of the clip is the U.S.-Mexico barrier’s negative impact to native species and the surrounding environment.
The Trump administration waived 28 environmental laws including the Endangered Species Act in order to build 33 more miles of wall in the Rio Grande Valley, including a 5.5-mile concrete and steel barrier through the butterfly refuge. The project was funded by last year’s congressional appropriations.
The National Butterfly Center Director Marianna Wright told the Guardian that the wall’s construction would harm the butterflies as well as other species like the Texas tortoise, Texas indigo snake and Texas horned lizard that also find refuge on the center’s land.
The butterfly sanctuary has filed an emergency restraining order on Monday to halt the construction, the Texas Observer reported. The center is also urging supporters to call their senators and representatives to stop any further border wall funding.
A 2017 study by the Center for Biological Diversity looking at the potential impact of the wall on 93 threatened or endangered species found that it could drive jaguars and ocelots to extinction in the U.S. https://t.co/OOKL6hjw3x
— Center for Bio Div (@CenterForBioDiv) February 12, 2019
Meanwhile, the center wrote in a Facebook post on Thursday that trees were being taken down in their section of the Lower Rio Grande Valley Wildlife Conservation Corridor, “a remnant of native habitat set aside for species protection.”
The post also included a Facebook live video from writer and conservation photographer Krista Schlyer, who went to the site to observe the construction work. Schlyer said in a later video that authorities escorted her away from the construction site.
“They really don’t want me to see what’s going on back there,” she said.
Construction of #borderwall began this morning on the La Parida tract of the Lower Rio Grande Refuge. The forest is being torn down – all access blocked by law enforcement. I guess @realDonaldTrump is afraid for people to see what he is doing @nytimes @washingtonpost @SenSchumer
— krista schlyer (@kristaschlyer) February 14, 2019