The Southwest is in one of the most rapidly urbanizing areas in the country. Albuquerque is the largest city in New Mexico, and the city’s motto, “change your perspective”, is in reference to its varied natural areas, beautiful landscapes, and cultural heritage. The greater metropolitan area of Albuquerque has a human population of over one million. The combination of a rapidly expanding urban matrix and the juxtaposition among natural areas, culturally sensitive areas and pueblos and villages has created a unique need and desire to conserve wildlands within and around the Albuquerque greater-metropolitan area. Hence, Albuquerque is a perfect case study of the opportunities and challenges associated with urban wildlife conservation in the Southwest. The tour will be entirely in the field with presenters at various stops. The tour will include: 1) a visit to the Rio Grande Nature Center, an urban park located on the Rio Grande flyway; 2) a tour of Petroglyph National Monument, one of the largest petroglyph sites in North America, which is surrounded by urban development; 3) participation in a small restoration project with Albuquerque Open Space while learning about the acquisition of lands by the city and future plans for open space and community involvement; and 4) a unique opportunity to visit the Pueblo Santa Ana, to learn about the Pueblo’s restoration projects, landscape scale wildlife corridor program, reintroduction work, and a variety of other wildlife projects currently being implemented on the Pueblo.
Organizers: Gizelle Hurtado, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM
Supported by: TWS Urban Wildlife Working Group