Indentifying and Protecting Wildlife Corridors

Posts tagged ‘Pathways’

Thank You!

Thank you everyone for your renewed memberships and donations to Pathways!

If you would still like to be a supporting member of Pathways or make a donation, you can via PayPal on our website:Contact Us/Donate | Pathways: Wildlife Corridors of New Mexico or by sending a check to:

P.O. Box 305
Placitas, NM 87043

What we do for wildlife:

1. We gather scientifically valid, research grade data on our local animals to help validate and document their existence. We focus on the larger animals; black bears, mule deer, mountain lions, elk, pronghorn, and bobcats, but we gather information and document the little guys too, as well as birds, insects, and reptiles.

2. We help people live with, rather than kill, their wild neighbors. We give talks, write articles, respond to emailed questions, host a website, and train volunteers in wildlife track and sign identification.

How you can help us, and our wild relatives:

1. Renew your membership/make a donation! It really does help us!

2. Send us your animal stories/sightings, this really helps them! You can send to me at or directly to: · Pathways

3. Drive slowly in Placitas! and watch out for your wild neighbors.

Thank You! from all of us at Pathways: Wildlife Corridors of NM

New Video Shows Wild Jaguar in Arizona

The Center for Biological Diversity released new video today of a wild jaguar currently living in the United States, named ‘Sombra’ by students of the Paolo Freire Freedom School in Tucson. Captured on remote sensor cameras in the Chiricahua Mountains of southern Arizona, the footage shows what appears to be the same jaguar photographed in the nearby Dos Cabezas Mountains in November 2016.

“This beautiful cat has now appeared in images taken seven months apart,” said Randy Serraglio, conservation advocate with the Center. “It seems that it’s established residence in excellent habitat more than 50 miles north of the border, which is great news for jaguar recovery.”

“Our kids benefit from an educational philosophy that connects them to their world in a concrete and hands-on way,” said Tadeo Pfister, a science teacher at Paulo Freire. “They love studying these big cats, and it’s thrilling to know that they’re helping to shape a future that includes jaguars.”

The footage, shot this summer, is the first publicly released video of this jaguar. Individual jaguars’ spot patterns are unique, and biologists have compared the photographic evidence to determine that this is the same cat that was photographed last year by a camera maintained by the Bureau of Land Management.

In response to the Center’s video release, Arizona Game and Fish Department officials confirmed that Sombra is a male, based on previously unreleased photographic evidence.

Jaguars continue to move into Arizona from a small, vulnerable population in northern Mexico. Seven jaguars have been confirmed by photographs in the United States in the past 20 years, including most recently:

The jaguar named “El Jefe” by Tucson middle school students was photographed by trail cameras more than 100 times in the Santa Rita Mountains near Tucson between 2012 and 2015. Video footage of El Jefe released in February 2016 went viral and was seen by millions of people around the globe.
A male jaguar, named “Yo’ko” by students at Hiaki High School on the Pascua Yaqui reservation, has been photographed repeatedly between December 2016 and May 2017 by trail cameras in the Huachuca Mountains in southern Arizona. Yo’ko appears to have established a territory on the Fort Huachuca military reservation.
“Sombra,” which is Spanish for “shadow,” is the third U.S. jaguar detected in the past three years, originally photographed in November 2016 in the Dos Cabezas Mountains just north of the Chiricahuas.

click the link below to read the rest of the story and see video options:

Source: New Video Shows Wild Jaguar in Arizona

California Bans Bobcat Trapping in 3-2 Vote

Read the article from KCET here: California Bans Bobcat Trapping in 3-2 Vote. Bobcats are one of our “focal species” here at Pathways, because, even though they are a smaller, “mezzo-predator”, and don’t range as far and wide as our other focal species, we have included them because of the hunting/trapping pressure being put on them for the fur business.  Being “common” is no protection for an animal, as most of the animals now extirpated were once “common”. Humans have literally become the balance of nature over the past century (especially), deciding which animals will live, in how many numbers, and which are not worth our trouble; but we are still confounded by “invasive species” and those we consider pests. We’re trying to control this ship yet, and we must try, but I don’t think anyone can or really ever has.  Nature is a beautiful thing when she is in balance, and everyone has a chance to be who they are.  But now, we’re drowning in human beings, nature is something “out there” or far away, and we don’t even know what animals are really here for. So yea for California, but lets think about what a bobcat is, all of the other plants and animals that make it possible for this mid-size cat to be in the hills, and at last, where do we fit in?

DNA used to better determine bear population

Read today’s Journal article here:

Hair, DNA used to better determine bear population | Albuquerque Journal News.

on an on-going Black Bear population survey taking place in the Sandia Mts. this summer.

Pathways is participating in this survey, setting and monitoring hair snares in two sections on the north end of Sandia Mt. Volunteers who have been trained in this protocol go out every 2 weeks to check the snares for bear fur, gather and record it, then move the snare to a new location.

Knowing more about the animals who live here will help human beings deepen their relationship with and respect for the other species who have grown with, evolved with,
and shaped this land.

Black Bear

Tracker Certification








Deer tracks

Deer tracks

This weekend Pathways will be helping with another wildlife track and sign course with professional tracker,

Casey McFarland.  Read some of the history of this course here:  History | Tracker Certification.

There is still room for a couple more people, so contact Casey directly; email: and take advantage of this great opportunity to see another side of animal, bird and insect life here in NM.

NewsDaily: APNewsBreak: Western governors show wildlife maps

Read an article here : NewsDaily: APNewsBreak: Western governors show wildlife maps. about the Western Governor’s Association rollout of the wildlife mapping that has been underway for the past 3 years.

Pathways has not contributed to this effort directly, it was too broad scale and general of project.  The really fine scale, on the ground, site specific type of research and monitoring that we’re interested in has not been funded on the state-wide scale that really needs to be done.  Even a broad state-wide survey of “crucial” wildlife corridors and linkages for our large mammal species like Rocky Mountain Elk, Mule Deer, Mountain Lions, and Black Bears, has not been funded, even though the laws are in place to do so, through RETA :New Mexico Renewable Energy Transmission Authority.  Funny how the “Authority” didn’t make it from the acronym into the title.

In thinking about how this is a benefit to wildlife, on the one hand, it may seem to be pandering to industry, giving ammunition to those who would destroy, disrupt, fragment, and exploit life to make money while providing some service or “product” to humanity.  On the other hand it may seem like a way to bring those very industries to a closer understanding of how they can “produce” without harming the very people they intend to “service”..  (because lets face it, industry has never cared about wildlife, unless forced to, or unless it makes good P.R.  And humans care about humans first, right?).  So are the maps a benefit to wildlife?  In my opinion, having data is good, having a data platform is good, having a data platform that the public can plug into is even better. Like · Pathways

Does massive amounts of data do any good?  I think it does when its connected to a massive brain, which can make massively intelligent decisions, with compassion for all the diversity of life.  Are we there yet?  I don’t think so.  Are we on our way?  We better be.

June 2013 edition of the “Green Fire Times”

Link here:

June 2013.

to read the June edition of the “Green Fire Times” online. The whole issue is dedicated to wildlife connectivity with the land in the state of NM, and the cover is pretty nice too!

Pathways – Who we are:

Wildlife Corridors of New Mexico

Who we are:
Since 2006, we are the grass roots collective who has the vision to see that all animals who need to move between New Mexico’s mountains may do so freely and without harm. This in turn will, through our mission to recognize and protect our state’s vital wildlife corridors, maintain and improve the health of our New Mexico Mountains.

Our philosophy is: We take care of the wildlife, the wildlife takes care of the land, and from this we all benefit.

What we do:
Through community outreach and collaboration with other conservation organizations, we fulfill our misson of recognizing and protecting the health of wildlife corridors. We provide maps, information, and on the ground research by working with State, local and Federal agencies, private land owners and others.

We belong:
To a community of individuals and organizations including: New Mexico Wildways: New Mexico Wilderness Alliance, Earth Works Institute, New Mexico Priority Wildlife Linkages,, Wildlands Network, Wildlife Habitat of NM, Trust for Public Land, Albuquerque Wildlife Federation,The Nature Conservancy, Las Placitas Association, Wild Horse Observers Association (WHOA), Wildlife Tracking Southwest, and others.

Long term Goals and Commitments:
We are committed to protecting the last unobstructed wildlife corridor on Sandia mountain by supporting the USFS decision to close the NE corner of the Sandia Ranger District to motorized use. This goal has been achieved! ( Spring of ‘09)
We are embarking on a two year wildlife mural project along Hwy. 165 through Placitas which will involve community members, businesses, school children, and seniors to create a lasting, visible reminder of the wildlife connections we value.
The mosaic sign, “Protect Our Wildlife Corridors”, and 2, nine foot wide by six and a half foot tall animal panels have been completed (’08). Two more panels of the same size are to be completed this year, with the first one to be installed May 30-31 ‘09.
This was achieved on time! There are now 3 panels installed, plus the sign, with another panel scheduled to be installed by May of 2010.

We are commited to starting up a Citizen Scientist wildlife track and sign monitoring program which will provide scientifically valid data to local, state and federal governments. We have begun this effort and currently have 14 volunteers gaining field time and training to become qualified monitors in the Placitas area. A goal is to have 2 team leaders qualified at level 3 track and sign by this fall ‘09. This has been achieved! We now have 2 teams of qualified volunteers who are ready to gather official data starting in Jan. of 2010.

To work with NMDOT and other agencies to construct a bridge over Las Huertas Cr. at I-25 to replace the existing culverts. This will allow safer passage of wildlife under the interstate along a vital wildlife corridor. This goal will of course be tied to the reconstruction of this section of I-25.

Achievements include:
Producing maps and information describing the wildlife corridors between Sandia, Jemez and Sangre de Christo Mts. This raises public awareness and interest in protecting these vital connections.
Completion of three (of 7) mosaic mural panels, “Protect Our Wildlife Corridors”.
Two qualified team leaders who are training volunteers in wildlife track and sign monitoring in the Placitas area. Data collection and documentation of wildlife corridor locations and uses. Organizing the Citizen Scientist wildlife monitoring program in this area.
Providing a meeting place and schedule of regular monthly meetings. The 4th Tuesday of every month, 6:30 pm, at the Placitas Senior Center. Location: #41 Camino de las Huertas, Placitas, NM 87043.
Input to the U.S.F.S., B.L.M. and Sandoval County informing various land use decision making processes. A goal is to meet with Sandoval County and NMSGF by June of ‘10 to discuss a wildlife corridor study in the Placitas area. The Placitas Area Plan was just passed by the Sandoval County Commission in April ‘09 and includes the desire of the County for such a study.
Outreach to other communities to encourage an interest in forming additional wildlife corridor protection groups. (Pathways-Jemez and Wildlife Habitat of NM). We have met with interested parties in the Jemez and Galisteo area many times over the past two years, and a goal of Pathways is to support and encourage the formation of wildlife corridor identification and protection groups statewide. The workshop on June 10th with the Wildlands Network helped to further that goal by forming a coalition: New Mexico Wildways. See members above in “We Belong”