Ecology

Another Exposé of USDA Wildlife Services

I received an email recently, asking if I'd heard any updates on the Jamie Olson situation, the one I posted about in November. As you may recall, Jamie Olson is the USDA Wildlife Services trapper who posted about his wildlife "work" -- with graphic images depicting his treatment of wolves and other predators, including pictures of his dogs mauling trapped animals. The petition to fire Jamie Olson, started by Project Coyote, is still [...]

2013-03-17T14:05:45+00:00March 17th, 2013|Ecology, Hunting, Issues, Uncategorized|29 Comments

Support a New Wildlife Conservation Stamp

WildlifeConservationStamp.org is a collaborative effort to promote a new wildlife stamp and funding stream for our National Wildlife Refuges. We are birders, photographers, conservationists, wildlife rehabilitators, scientists, teachers and artists ... joined by a common passion and concern for our nation’s wildlife and wild habitats. We propose the Wildlife Conservation Stamp to provide a consistent source of income for our Refuges, separate but parallel to the current Federal Duck Stamp program. The Wildlife Conservation Stamp would raise fees [...]

2013-02-13T19:19:33+00:00February 13th, 2013|Ecology, Issues, Parks, Uncategorized, Wildlife Solutions|4 Comments

Wet Eagles and Power Gulls

This is who we came to see in Beautiful British Columbia: And this is what drew our eyes upward ... to the gossamer-draped mountains: All morning, the gulls traversed the valley in regiments. First one troop would cross, then another, then a third, their numbers interspersed with sudden flushes of Starlings from the trees (the black dots you see in this frame). In the distance, we watched the gulls drop down [...]

2013-01-10T12:25:18+00:00January 10th, 2013|Ecology, Issues, Uncategorized|6 Comments

Livestock Production, Wildlife & Food Choices

Edited 11/9/12: I received some additional links which expand the discussion here, concerning the findings of the FAO report I link to below. I've noted a few corrections in the actual text. But, you can read a good summary of the points in this New York Times piece, Measuring Livestock's Long Shadow. In this article Robert Goodland, a retired environmental advisor with the World Bank, talks about how livestock's contribution to greenhouse gases is [...]

2018-04-25T18:15:25+00:00November 4th, 2012|Domestic Animals, Ecology, Issues|4 Comments

Studies in Godwit

Every so often, I get a request for 'derivative works' permission -- usually from a wildlife artist who wants to use a photo as the foundation for a painting or print. I particularly love it when the work is used to benefit an animal cause ... like this painting of a Brown Pelican I photographed in San Francisco. Artist Dan Kent created an ink and watercolor version as part of a wildlife benefit during the [...]

2012-10-04T23:38:53+00:00October 4th, 2012|Birds, Ecology, Pollution, Uncategorized, Wildlife Rescue|5 Comments

The Deafening Sound of Man

My title here derives from a quote in this article about Dr. Bernie Krause: "A great silence is spreading over the natural world even as the sound of man is becoming deafening. Little by little the vast orchestra of life, the chorus of the natural world, is in the process of being quietened. There has been a massive decrease in the density and diversity of key vocal creatures, both large and small. The sense of [...]

2012-09-10T11:19:20+00:00September 10th, 2012|Ecology, Issues, Pollution, Uncategorized|2 Comments

The Sac Bee on USDA Wildlife Services

I knew about some of the lethal practices used by Wildlife Services, but I had no idea about the extent of usage and implementation. This three-part series from the Sacramento Bee is a really tough read (as in painful), but I think it's information worth knowing: The Killing Agency (Part 1) and Part Two by Tom Knudsen. (Thanks to Dawn Watch for the link.)

2012-04-30T14:20:58+00:00April 30th, 2012|Ecology, Hunting, Issues, Uncategorized|3 Comments

Having a Heart for Horses

In commemoration of the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday: "Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way. " ~ Martin Luther King, Jr. I've posted only once about horse issues in this blog -- citing an article in the New York Times [...]

2012-01-16T14:53:00+00:00January 16th, 2012|Ecology, Issues, Mammals, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Part 3: Our Economic Potential As Birders & Wildlife Watchers

This is Part 3 (of 3) in a series on non-hunting revenue streams for our National Wildlife Refuge system. In Part 1 I talk about the issues surrounding the current funding system. In Part 2, I interview Marlin Greene who’s been producing an alternative refuge stamp since 2006, to draw attention to this subject. Edited to add: The idea of a national Wildlife Conservation Stamp is gaining traction and support. It would be an alternative [...]

2011-11-14T12:35:29+00:00November 14th, 2011|Ecology, Hunting, Issues, Uncategorized|3 Comments

Part 2: The Non Hunters’ Stamp

In the first part of this three-part series, I posted about the funding issues that shape land-use decisions on National Wildlife Refuges.You can read that post here: Part 1: Non-Hunters and National Wildlife Refuges.In Part 3 I discuss how birders, photographers and wildlife watchers can capitalize on their economic power. Here, I interview photographer Marlin Greene on his concept of the refuge stamp and what "refuge" means to him. Part 2: The No [...]

2011-11-06T22:35:19+00:00November 6th, 2011|Ecology, Hunting, Issues, Uncategorized|10 Comments

Part 1: Wildlife Watchers and National Wildlife Refuges

This is a three part series about National Wildlife Refuge funding and how the current system affects land-use privileges for non-hunters and non-consumptive users. In Part 2 I interview photographer Marlin Greene who has created a No Hunting Stamp to promote awareness about hunting on National Wildlife Refuges. And in Part 3 I discuss how birders, photographers and wildlife watchers can capitalize on their economic power. ------------------------------------- Here's the issue. This blurb is taken from [...]

2011-11-04T02:09:35+00:00November 4th, 2011|Ecology, Hunting, Issues, Uncategorized|32 Comments

Local Salmon & the Salmon ISA Virus

I came upon Alexandra Morton through a link on a Facebook page -- the Orca Network's page. Morton is a biologist who, according to her brief bio statement, is "a registered professional biologist who was living in a remote archipelago studying whales when the fish farmers came to my town." Today, she posted a revealing and disheartening piece on the spread of the ISA virus found in local salmon populations. The ISA or [...]

2011-10-29T13:23:32+00:00October 29th, 2011|Ecology, Issues, Uncategorized|4 Comments

Derelict Nets & Entangled Birds

Note: All gulls pictured in this post, and other trapped birds were freed from the netting. Follow Up on 10/21/11: I phoned today and learned that an official went out to this net, confirmed what we saw in terms of bird entanglement, and holes in the net have apparently been fixed as a temporary measure, although I'm anxious to check up on the gulls myself. I was told the Westport seafood company responsible for these [...]

2011-10-19T13:48:29+00:00October 19th, 2011|Ecology, Hunting, Issues, Pollution, Uncategorized, Wildlife Rescue|7 Comments

Low Tide Driving

I was surprised to see this Mercedes SUV navigating over sensitive tidelands habitat in the Des Moines area of Washington. I looked it up and found that it is, in fact, legal for residents of this area. As a transplanted Californian, I was told a few times to stay off the tidelands, low or high tide, didn't matter. I was new to tidal law in Puget Sound, and I didn't realize that property to the low [...]

2011-02-26T21:25:23+00:00February 26th, 2011|Ecology, Issues, Uncategorized|2 Comments

Graphic Video: Heavily Oiled Birds

I truncated this post to give you the option to view or not view the graphic images in this video. Although I hope everyone sees and is moved to action by these nightmarish depictions of oiled birds, I understand how a sensitive soul might be affected by the suffering here. There’s a reason I’m up at 2am, unable to sleep, posting words that can’t possibly encompass the grief I feel. […]

2010-06-04T02:31:40+00:00June 4th, 2010|Ecology, Issues, Pollution, Uncategorized|1 Comment

Ahimsa at the Tidepools

I swear, if I have to ask one more kid to stop throwing rocks at animals . . . It was an imperfect plan to begin with: super-low tide on a Sunday at the gorgeous but hardly-secret Fitzgerald Marine Reserve. I've been waiting for a daylight minus (-) tide for a few months. I'd even marked this one on my calendar when I saw it in the marine forecast. Fitzgerald is a marine sanctuary known [...]

2009-11-16T15:22:47+00:00November 16th, 2009|Ecology, Issues, Parks, Uncategorized|2 Comments

The Unheralded Hulet Hornbeck

Until this week, I didn't know how much gratitude I owed Mr. Hulet Hornbeck. The sign below marks the head of a commemorative trail at Carquinez Strait Regional Shoreline -- a park in the vast and lovely East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD). When Hornbeck began his tenure as Chief of Land Acquisition for EBRPD in 1965, just 13 parks comprised the park district, a sum of 13,000 acres. By the time he retired in [...]

2009-11-14T20:21:31+00:00November 14th, 2009|Ecology, Issues, Uncategorized|0 Comments