“How may life endure in the Land, if the Forestals fail and perish, as they must, and naught remains to ward its most vulnerable treasures. We were formed to stand as guardians in the Creator’s stead. Must it transpire that beauty and truth shall pass utterly when we are gone?”
Caerroil Wildwood to Linden Avery. From Fatal Revenant by Stephen Donaldson
The Fragile Beauty of The Earth
Today’s newspapers show you a world that is driven by money and economics.
Everything is valued in sterling, euros, dollars or the rises and falls of the FTSE and the world stock markets.
It is a shallow way to value our Earth.
Rather, what is important are the rare and beautiful animals and plants which inhabit this green and delicate planet.
Wild animals can only do so much to take care of themselves.
They are completely dependent on humanity’s conscience.
Forests, grasslands and moor habitats are becoming fragmented.
Wild animals are displaced, lose shelter and food resources.
Starvation is a serious cause of animal population declines.
Some animals have been shot and eradicated.
The last bear in Britain died in the 1200’s.
The last wolf in Britain was shot in the 1700’s.
Animals require our protection.
How do we know which animals are the ones to focus on?
The main way of assessing the extinction risk for a species is by counting the population and monitoring it over time.
We call this estimating population abundance.
Plotting out how many animals reside in a wild location and figuring out what might cause their numbers to grow or decline is completely fascinating.
And when we identify a species that may be at risk of declining – we can then take this knowledge to our society to help them figure out what to do to help those animals.
On these pages are shown some of the wildlife studies I have been fortunate to contribute to. In many wild and remote locations , with world-class conservation biologists.
The Naankuse Wildlife Sanctuary in Namibia – a country where society chooses to hunt antelopes for food and trophies, to a sustainable level.
United States Geological Survey, in Montana, conducting a whole population count of grizzly bears.
United States Fish and Wildlife Service, in Montana, monitoring the effects of bringing new bears to a small population previously in decline.
Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks, monitoring the entire 750+ gray wolf population of Montana USA.
Sorby Natural History Society in Derbyshire, monitoring and mapping the presence of mountain hares in the Peak District that were reintroduced 130 years ago.
The experiences have been scientifically interesting, amazing ventures, sometimes hazardous, if not very slightly inconveniently dangerous.
So rest awhile with a cup of Yorkshire tea and gaze around this website that portrays the Fragile Beauty of the Earth.
Oh – there’s some stuff about fell running here too.
All comments welcome – just email me.
Kind regards, Carl Bedson