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We hope that you enjoy our site, interspersed with the beautiful and awe-inspiring work of various wildlife artists, and engage with us for a rich and diverse dialogue on environmental stewardship. Please share with us your ideas, conservation success stories, and conservation heroes, so we can highlight them here for all to share and enjoy.
“A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, the stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.” ― Aldo Leopold
Guest Contributor: Reed Watson
The following article was written by Reed Watson, Executive Director of PERC, and is being republished from PERC’s blog the Percololator.
A recently published article on predator conservation is generating significant attention in wildlife policy circles and in the mainstreammedia. The study, authored by Guillaume Chapron and Adrian Treves, points to changes in population growth rates of grey wolves during alternating periods of government-authorized culling to challenge the notion that legally killing threatened carnivores discourages illegal poaching.
Examining wolf populations in Wisconsin and Michigan during times when the species bounced on and off the endangered species list, the authors estimate population growth rates fell from 16 to 12 percent when culling was allowed.
Whether or not the data actually support that conclusion,commentators have conflated population culls by state wildlife agencies with hunting by individual citizens, inaccurately citing the article for evidence that hunting is bad for conservation. Worse, the current debate largely ignores the important connection between economic incentives and wildlife conservation. Read more here . . .
By Brent Fewell
I never weary of great stories like this one, capitalism at work to improve the human condition and sustain our oceans. The Bloomberg Philanthropies Vibrant Oceans Initiative is the largest philanthropic commitment to internationally reform fisheries management. This Partnership between Encourage Capital, RARE, and Oceana will help Brazil, Chile and the Philippines sustainably manage their fisheries, enhance food security and strengthen local communities.
This past week, the National Academy of Sciences, released a study titled Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects, which constitutes the most robust, independent review of the peer-reviewed research on the use of genetically engineered (GE) crops conducted to date. Andrew Pollack of the New York Times reported on the news here, Genetically Engineered Crops are Safe, Analysis Finds. The NAS report largely reinforces the safety of GE crops to human health and animals that consume such crops, but I suspect the report will not put to final rest the highly charged issue. Here's the NAS executive summary: Since the 1980s, biologists have used genetic engineering of crop plants to express novel traits. For various reasons, only two traits—insect resistance and read more
Pa. can keep the Chesapeake Bay clean without hurting farmers - here's how By Ron Kreider By PennLive Op-Ed May 25, 2016 I grew up in Lancaster County and generations of my family have called Kreider Farms Dairy our home since 1736. I'm fortunate to be part of a community that cares so much about our agricultural heritage and works to be good environmental stewards of our land. Every farmer I know wants to tackle the real environmental threat of livestock waste runoff. It's a serious threat to Pennsylvania's environment, waterways and the Chesapeake Bay. That's why it's disappointing to hear the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection wants to transform local conservation districts and have them 'police' farmers who are working to deal with this problem. Not read more
Seems to be a malt theme running through some of these positive developments. Recently, we reported here regarding the Saltwater Brewery in Florida that recently created a wildlife-friendly six-pack holder that would reduce the number of wildlife deaths caused each year from plastic holders. This week, the Flying Dog Brewery in Frederick, Maryland, announced that it will unveil a new eco-brew in September, proceeds from which will help to support the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay. This isn't the first eco-brew by Flying Dog, but it reinforces the increasing popularity of eco-brewing with beer loving patrons. Here's the scoop from Al Todd, Executive Director for Alliance for the Bay, who teamed with Flying Dog on this latest brew. For those read more
The devastating impacts of plastics on aquatic wildlife and birds cannot be understated. We've covered the controversy here at Conservefewell a number of times here and here. Nearly 30 years ago, I recall visiting a landfill just outside of Blue Hill, Maine, where I found several seagulls hopelessly entwined in plastic six-pack holders, wasting away unable to eat or fly. Over the years, evidence of the impacts of plastics on sea life has continued to mount. This is not a knock on plastics, as plastics have improved the lives of humans immensely; rather, it is a great story about human innovation and compassion. Kudos to the Saltwater Brewery and this brilliant read more
The following article was written by Reed Watson, Executive Director of PERC, and is being republished from PERC's blog the Percololator. A recently published article on predator conservation is generating significant attention in wildlife policy circles and in the mainstream media. The study, authored by Guillaume Chapron and Adrian Treves, points to changes in population growth rates of grey wolves during alternating periods of government-authorized culling to challenge the notion that legally killing threatened carnivores discourages illegal poaching. Examining wolf populations in Wisconsin and Michigan during times when the species bounced on and off the endangered species list, the authors estimate population growth rates fell from 16 to 12 percent when culling was allowed. Whether or not the data actually support that conclusion, commentators read more
Tracy Mehan has an excellent review of Tom Turner's new book, David Brower: The Making of the Environmental Movement, in ELI's upcoming Environmental Forum. David Brower, considered by many to be the most influential protagonist of modern environmentalism, was also the founder of many environmental groups, including the John Muir Institute for Environmental Studies, Friends of the Earth, League of Conservation Voters, and Earth Island Institute. Brower also served as the first Executive Director of the Sierra Club from 1952-1969. According to Mehan, The contemporary environmental movement reflects both the strengths and weaknesses of its founding father. The young David Brower grew up in a strict Presbyterian, teetotaling household. A Berkeley native, to young David the Sierra Nevada and Yosemite were his home, read more
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