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Nature in it's glory

Nature in it's glory

Nov 22, 2009

One step forward two steps back: The survival dance

For some reason  I was thinking about Bumblebees today.  I do not really recall what led my thinking in that direction but I realized that I had only seen one Bumblebee in the last five years or so. That was last year as I  was watching a Merlin catch it midair. Perhaps it was the Merlin in the warehouse the other day that triggered the memory of seeing it. Regardless, I used to see Bumblebees quite often when I lived in Winnipeg and in northern Ontario, and also as a child in Germany.   In fact I used to see a lot of things that I no longer see, like certain Butterflies for instance and some native plant species.  Perhaps its a side effect of birdwatching that leads me to notice these things, but when I went online today to check out my favorite sites, I stumbled across some interesting articles in regards to Butterflies, Bumblebees and Bees.  Here are the links:

It seems that due to the extensive use of pesticides and herbicides some of these creatures are in danger of extinction, or may in fact already be extinct, just as the Peregrine Falcon very nearly was.  The good news is that in Britain they have managed to bring one species of butterfly back from the brink.  This of course is really good news to me.  In fact its great.  It is a step forward in reversing some of the damage we have caused, and I have heard other such stories which are very encouraging.

Yet it is disturbing to know that because of our prejudice against certain species of plants and insects, or because we are defending against them as some would have it, we are thoughtlessly killing off the most beneficial species in the bargain. Bees and Bumblebees after all pollinate some of the plants that we grow to eat. I say thoughtlessly, because the fact is we know very little about the effects of these poisonous chemicals beyond the fact that they kill the "pest" we are struggling with. God only knows what the long term use of these poisons do to other wildlife and humans for that matter, and yet we produce more of them every single day.      

We do not however, have to make use of them. There are environmentally friendly herbicides and pesticide  and/or methods that can be used.  I used to dig up the thistles in my garden by hand and pour salt down into the hole where the root was to discourage their return, and it worked very well.  Of course it was work.  I did get pricked by  thistle thorns on occasion, and it would have been much easier to spray a herbicide around, but I preferred not to, especially when I was pregnant, my children were small and because I have no wish to breathe in the chemical fumes myself.  Using environmentally friendly products and methods might yet reverse the decline of Bumblebees, Bees and/or other species beneficial to humans and I encourage anyone and everyone to do so.  Follow these links for more info:

link... http://sustainableliving.about.com/

The other thing that really disturbs and puzzles me, is that there are those who, though educated, for what ever reason stubbornly refuse to see, or admit that humans are having an adverse affect on this world, and that we are endangering ourselves. People who refuse to take action or  undermine the efforts of others to do so.  The only conclusion that I can draw is that those who claim there is no danger, must either be in serious denial, are seriously optimistic about the earth's ability to recover, are misinformed, have their heads stuck firmly in the sand, or are worshiping at the temple of  mighty money.  These people take one step back, or hold the rest of us back, when we urgently need to move forward to help the wildlife and the earth to recover.  Seriously, the longer you let your house go the longer and harder it is to clean up, or at some point it is condemned.  The same holds true for our world.

All you have to do is open your eyes and really look around you to see the evidence for yourself.  You will see, water levels are either rising or drying up, you will notice unusual or extreme  weather changes, you will see that people are struggling to breathe.  You will notice just how dirty and polluted rivers and lakes have become. If you then open up your other senses, you will hear silence where you  might have heard the song of a specific bird as a child, a droning bumble bee, the croak of a frog or the call of a hawk. You should also notice that the water does not taste good and isn't clear,  that the river where you might once have  fished is no longer abundantly populated with the fish you used to catch. That the grass, trees and bushes at the local park , on street meridians or around your town are burned by pollution or chemicals which feel strange and gross on  the skin, giving off a smell that  burns and tingles at the back of your throat and clings to your nostrils, or are covered in the residue smog. By all means do some research.You will hear that glaciers all over the world are receding, and the polar ice caps are melting. You will hear, or discover that many species of wildlife and marine life are now extinct and that many others are due to follow.

It has not been that long since I was a child, it worries me that wildlife is disappearing at such rapid pace that I should take notice. Does it not worry you? Do you not wonder how this will affect you? Your children and grandchildren?


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