The U.S.-Mexico border wall goes up near the Rio Grande in southern Texas
in January 2009 in a picture taken during a photo expedition organized by the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP).
The wall will begin just outside San Diego and run, with interruptions, to Brownsville, Texas. One chunk of the wall is to cover nearly 350 miles—virtually the entire length of the California-Arizona border with Mexico—and could have "long lasting" effects on wildlife that depend on unfettered migration corridors for survival, according to the conservation nonprofit Defenders of Wildlife, which worked with the ILCP on the Rapid Assessment Visual Expedition (RAVE).
Though many picture the border as barren, it's anything but, said Krista Schlyer, RAVE team leader. The area includes Arizona's last free-flowing river, the San Pedro; some of the last undeveloped grasslands
in North America; and the most diverse bird habitat in the U.S., along the Rio Grande River.
"A big part of our role was to show that to people—we need to be aware of what's being sacrificed," Schlyer said.
Photograph courtesy Wendy Shattil and Bob Rozinski