Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuge; Socorro, NM
About 75 miles north of Desert Haven Animal Refuge lies a very different kind of animal sanctuary. Near Socorro, New Mexico, the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge provides a haven for sandhill cranes, snow geese, ducks, bobcats, mountain lions, coyotes, and many more species of birds who winter here. Created by Frankin D. Roosevelt's Civilian Corps in the 1930's, the Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuge combines farmland-
- to provide the proper habitat and food supply that was lost by the draining of the Rio Grande River for irrigation and consequent elimination of seasonal flooding. A man-made system of irrigation canals and gates, such as seen here,
mimics the floodplain that sustains native and migratory wildlife.
The wingspan of these graceful cranes is over seven feet.
In contrast, I measured my own "wing span" in the Visitor Center at only five feet.
We were fortunate to get quite close to a flock of snow geese with a few cranes among them. Look at the sequence of four shots as the flock took off for the skies and flew overhead.
There is no campground at Bosque del Apache but the Refuge does employ workampers, supplying campsites as compensation for the volunteers.