Meatloaf is a local, economical and substantial meal, and let’s say your particular meatloaf is legendary and prized by the locals. The local politicians also like the meatloaf and invite perspective business executives to enjoy this local dish; however, these executives are unimpressed by just meatloaf and in a hurry to go somewhere else for another deal. So, impatience mounts while they are seated at the table awaiting the hostess to serve, and when the hostess leaves the table for a moment, they begin to serve themselves. One businessman cuts off an end of the meatloaf and another slices a portion from the middle, and then others gouge out portions with their forks, until the meatloaf is a crumbling mess. When the hostess returns to the table, she sees the mess and throws up her hands in disbelief!
Fragmentation of the Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge is like this once-prized meatloaf. As private interests move into our area of Port Isabel/Laguna Vista/South Padre Island, the refuge area (of the loaf) is sliced off a piece at a time, or from one end or the other or gouged out of the middle for so-called sake of economic advancement. Thus, instead of a continuous or contiguous LANWR, we have smaller separate tracks/slices of refuge and more edge.
The increased edges will cause the refuge to become less effective and like the meatloaf will become unattractive and unpalatable for all but the most desperately hungry.
This analogy could also be used all up and down our coast and along our destructive border wall where other refuges, parks, birding trails and nature parks are being decimated by this same senseless destruction.
Will big-money interests with the willing knowledge of our politicians wreck our refuges and our natural resources through fragmentation, one slice and gouge at a time?
Diane Teter, Edinburg