Native vegetation plays an important role in habitat, as it offers variability of food sources, shelter, accessibility and visibility specific to species at particular times in their lifecycle. In restoring habitat hubs and retaining integrity within them, managing for native vegetation will provide the most valuable food sources.

For wildlife, corridors provide necessary travel routes to water sources, especially with a minimum of “1,100-foot width… to provide linkages with interior forest conditions of at least 500 feet wide, with an additional 300 feet of transition to edge on either side of the interior forest” (Benedict 2006, 129).

Of 144 bird species, 81 have a negative habitat pattern with the city.  This is equivalent to 56% of types of birds go around the city instead of within it.  The urban influence on their environment is evident due to sound and light pollution.  It is also due to the overwhelming fragmentation that occurs, and the edges created, which prevent many species from having access to resources.

The ArcGIS StoryMap “Place-based geo-referencing” shows where fragmentation is occurring in Santa Fe.  In the sensitive and unpredictable future ahead, having resilience through redundancy and variability will help protect, feed and shelter wildlife.

“If a tree has died and it is within 30 feet of a sidewalk, then topping the tree at 15-feet high would provide a short snag that could then be used by woodpeckers and secondary cavity nesters without significant risk to people or property”

Dr. Brenda McComb (2016), author and professor of habitat management at Oregon State University.

Place-based biogeographic referencing by the United States Geological Society allows for a more accurate understanding of which species habitats are experiencing fragmentation.  This in turn could be used to improve conditions where species have been sighted or are expected.