The Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge is the 8th largest refuge in the lower 48 states, encompassing 229,674 acres in central New Mexico.

It is unique because four biomes–the Colorado Plateau Shrub Steppe, the Chihuahuan Desert, the Short Grass Prairie, and the Montane Coniferous Woodland–intersect on the Refuge. In addition, the Rio Grande flows through the center of Sevilleta, providing a riparian oasis that plays a vital role in the mixed ecosystems. The area presents an ideal setting for research including investigating how climate variability and climate change act together to affect plant and animal communities at biotic transition zones.

The purpose of the refuge is “to preserve and enhance the integrity and character of the ecosystems of the . . . property by creating a wildlife refuge managed as nearly as possible in its natural state, employing only those management tools and techniques that are consistent with the maintenance of a natural ecological process . . . the land and the flora and fauna supported by it to be managed to permit the natural ecological successions and processes typical of the area to prevail . . . consistent with the regulations and policies of the national wildlife refuge system. . . portions of the property will be made available . . . for scientific research.”