The ecosystem of the Rio Grande Valley (our wildlife and natural habitat) is much more rich and diverse than many people who have never been to the Rio Grande Valley realize. Most of it has been cleared over the decades for agriculture and urban development, and sadly only a very small percentage of the native South Texas habitat remains. But this small percentage- preserved in our local parks and wildlife refuges- is an important source of income for the Rio Grande Valley. This kind of nature-focused tourism is called ecotourism, and it brings many visitors from around the country and even the world to the Rio Grande Valley. Part of the reason our ecosystem is so diverse is that we are right along the migratory path for many species. One example is the well-known monarch butterfly.
The Rio Grande Valley has been in the national and even international news lately because of the controversy surrounding the possible construction of more segments of the U.S. Mexico border wall, which would cut through and negatively impact some of these natural habitats. No matter what one’s political opinions are, it benefits our entire community when more people are aware of and appreciate our rich natural diversity. If you would like to learn more about our local wildlife and the native South Texas habitat, the library is a great place to start.
Check out our following titles:
- Creatures on the Edge: Wildlife Along the Lower Rio Grande
- Treasures of South Texas: Valley Land Fund Wildlife Photo Contest
- From Water to Wildlife in the Lower Rio Grande Valley
- Focus on the Wild: Saving South Texas Wildlife
- The Lens and the Land: Photographing South Texas Wildlife
- Nature Exposed: Discovering South Texas Wildlife
- Spirit of the Chaparral: the Magnificence of South Texas Wildlife
- Hidden Jewels: South Texas Wildlife
- Visions of South Texas: Beyond the Ranch Gate
- The Mesquite Tree
- Valley Ark: Life Along the Rio