FALFURRIAS, Texas - It's a disturbing new trend in border towns: ranchers are uncovering more remains of immigrants who are dying on the journey north.

In Brooks County, the sheriff's office recently found the fresh bodies of three immigrants who had just crossed the border.

Immigrants cross through rural ranches to avoid detection by Border Patrol. The ranches are remote, the terrain is unforgiving and sometimes, the thick brush becomes a graveyard.

"As the weather heats up, there's going to be more people who are here illegally," rancher Linda Vickers says.

She's one of the landowners in a group called the Texas Border Volunteers.

"We're like a big neighborhood watch but on 50,000 acres," Vickers says.

She says when they spot immigrants, the volunteers immediately call Border Patrol.

"They've found some that are in bad shape, need water, and they're ready to give up," Vickers says.

The ones who gave up long ago, their skeletal remains are scattered among the sand dunes. The Brooks County Sheriff's Office found several bones last month.

And in a four-day period, deputies found the fresh bodies of three immigrants, all with full lives ahead of them.

"I think between 25 and 30. I think that's pretty young to be dying out here," Chief Deputy Benny Martinez says. "The weather has been pretty hot. I think we've been right around over 90, 95. Humidity is 95, too."

The discoveries are unsettling. He says immigrant activity had slowed down.

"Of all the resources they applied down the river, it had minimized it," Chie f Deputy Martinez says.

Now, he's preparing for a surge in people crossing the border this summer.

"The heat is coming on and it's ruthless," Vickers says. "With the humidity and the heat it's just ruthless and will dehydrate you quick."

She says the deaths could be prevented.

"Instead of helping them here, why not go to the source?" Vickers says. "Go to their countries and educate them that there that - number one, it's wrong to come here illegally. And number two, that it's dangerous."

The medical examiner in Laredo picks up the remains of immigrants in Brooks County and all over South Texas, and will work to identify these most recent remains.