Archive for September 11th, 2014

Nature: Chihuahuan Desert

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

Chihuahuan Desert

Chihuahuan Desert

This is Passport to Texas

The Chihuahuan Desert Region is the third largest desert region of the Western Hemisphere and the second largest in North America. But many Texans know little about it.

13—I don’t know why they don’t know a lot more about the Chihuahuan Desert [region]. My guess is, when they think of West Texas, they think of Marfa and the art community; they think of McDonald Observatory, they think of Big Bend National Park and the State Park…

…Not realizing those places lie within this unique desert ecosystem. Cynthia Griffin is Executive Director of the Chihuahuan Desert Research Institute, or CDRI, in Fort Davis.

18—The Chihuahuan Desert [region] encompasses about 220-thousand square miles. Most of it is in North Central Mexico. But it also comes into West Texas basically west of the Pecos River. It’s in South Central New Mexico, and it’s in a small part of Southeastern Arizona.

Griffin says the range of elevations in the Chihuahuan Desert Region make it unique.

23—And it goes anywhere from a thousand feet above sea level up to ten thousand feet. And that large diversity in elevation accounts for the flora and the fauna, and it also accounts for the temperatures. Unlike the other deserts, we have a lot of coolness and we have more rain than they do because of that elevation range.

We’ll have more on the desert tomorrow. Until then read about the Chihuahuan Desert Region in the Aug/Sept
issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.