Yard Birds

The National Audubon Society reports the average population of common birds in North America has fallen by 68 percent since 1967; some individual species’ numbers are down by as much as 80 percent. ~ Margaret A. Haapoja Our yard is something of a mess. The lawn is mowed less often than most and full of […]

Right-of-Way (Collisions Versus Collusions)

“One of the sad facts of the modern world is that humans are a nightmare for non-human animals. This is manifested in many ways, but one of the most devastating is how voraciously we gobble up wildlife habitat to suit our own needs.” ~ Melissa Breyer It was dark and my headlights had just picked […]

Bumbling Along with Nature

“Scientist Sánchez-Bayo said he had recently witnessed an insect crash himself. A recent family holiday involved a 400-mile (700km) drive across rural Australia, but he had not once had to clean the windscreen, he said. ‘Years ago you had to do this constantly.’” ~ Damian Carrington One of the scary effects of human actions on […]

Fresh Meat

The destiny of the other items (in the freezer) was indistinct. They were for the consumption of the various occupants of the house, the whole food chain — bird, amphibian, beast and beetle, reptile, arachnid, man. A sign over the kitchen sink read, “EAT MORE POSSUM” in black on Chinese red. ~ John McPhee I […]

Balancing Nature

“’We started from this narrative in which the city is the villain, an evil landscape that chews up the environment and leaves nothing behind,’ he says.” “That’s certainly true, but the other reality is we’re not going to stop urbanizing the planet, so how do we turn cities into something good, something positive, for wildlife?” […]

Integration

“We are stealing nature from our children. Now, when I say this, I don’t mean that we are destroying nature that they will have wanted us to preserve, although that is unfortunately also the case. What I mean here is that we’ve started to define nature in a way that’s so purist and so strict […]

Huntin’ Ain’t a Bad Way to Grow Up

“Well now,” he continued, “a gentleman starts down at his boots and works up to his hat. A gentleman is, first of all, polite. A gentleman never talks down to nobody, or even to anybody that says ‘anybody’ instead of ‘nobody’. A gentleman ain’t greedy. A gentleman don’t holler at anybody else’s dogs. A gentleman […]

Shoo Fly!

  “With each generation, the amount of environmental degradation increases, but each generation takes that amount as the norm.” ~ Peter H. Kahn and Batya Friedman When we think about losing biodiversity, we tend to think of the last northern white rhinos protected by armed guards, of polar bears on dwindling ice floes. Extinction is […]

Plastic, Plastic Everywhere, and Not Just Straws, I Think

As we walked into town for breakfast, up ahead I saw him rise from his spot on the planter in the shade to pick up an empty plastic water bottle that had blown down the street. He tossed it into the trash can and reclaimed his spot. As we passed, he avoided eye contact, but […]

Roadside Distraction

“I knew when I had looked for a long time,” she writes, “that I had hardly begun to see.” ~ Nan Shepherd, quoted in Landmarks, Robert Macfarlane, 2015 When I drive, I try to be conscious of my surroundings — other traffic, buildings or pedestrians and the surrounding scenery. But in traffic, my attention stays […]