Linking biological conservation to healthy rural communities: a case history of the Janos – Casas Grandes Biosphere Reserve

TitleLinking biological conservation to healthy rural communities: a case history of the Janos – Casas Grandes Biosphere Reserve
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsFredrickson E.L., Ceballos G., List R., Barajas N., Sayre N.F., Roacho E.J.O., Sierra C.R., Ponce G.E., Davidson A.D., Melgoza A., Jaquez C., Bezanilla E.G.A.
Conference NameEcological Society of America
Date Published08/2009
Conference LocationAlbuquerque, NM
ARIS Log Number237911
Keywordsabstract, biological conservation, Casa Grandes Biosphere Reserve, ESA, Janos
Abstract

During the late 1930’s, Aldo Leopold witnessed a striking contrast along the narrow boundary between the United States and Mexico. He later described Mexican ecosystems as a “lovely picture of ecological health” and those same ecosystems north of the U.S. - Mexico border as “so badly damaged that only tourists and those ecologically blind, can look upon them without a feeling of sadness, and regret.” On this the hundredth centennial of Leopold’s arrival in the Southwest, the difference has waned but has not completely vanished. Within Mexico’s Janos – Casas Grande region lays the largest black-tailed prairie dog complex within North America, reminiscent of past ecosystems just north of the border. Now a Biosphere Reserve, collaborative efforts between Mexican and U. S. scientists are reconstructing the area’s ecological history and identifying key ecosystem properties maintaining grasslands and essential ecosystem services.