The most southern tip of Texas, the lower Rio Grande Valley, is considered one of the fastest growing regions in the nation and includes 1.3 million residents on this side of the U.S.-Mexico border.
Known as the last great habitat in coastal south Texas, the South Texas Refuge Complex supports a diversity of wildlife unlike anywhere else in the United States.
Through a diversity of educational, business, and cultural programs, refuges create and protect habitat in schools yards, city pocket parks, and vacant lots, as well as create urban wildlife corridors that connect to refuge lands.
Refuges support and facilitate community efforts to identify, recognize, and care for nature in their communities and, by extension, a nearby national wildlife refuge.
Reptiles include Texas tortoise, American alligator, indigo snake, western diamondback rattlesnake and coral snake. The South Padre Island Unit provides nesting habitat for sea turtles - Kemp’s ridley, loggerhead, hawksbill and Atlantic green.
Refuges enhance education in one of the nation’s poorest school districts and create employment opportunities.