Man oh man, check out this photo from our backyard:
That’s from a bear who’s been frequenting our neighborhood of late (if the rather large, nightly deposits of bear scat in various spots around the ‘hood are any indication, he’s been a regular visitor). Through the opening he made in our fence, you can see a heavy hanging plum tree (in our neighbor’s yard), the fruit of which I suspect he’d been enjoying. We actually heard him wreaking havoc on the fence (it was about 11pm at night, right outside our bedroom window more or less). It sounded like a drunken linebacker who’d lost his way and found our fence to be an obstacle to be removed from his path. Wild.
Actually literally wild. Here in Boulder, and in countless other parts of the country, many of our neighborhoods butt up against open space (ours does for example) which results in inevitable contact and encounters between animals and people. We are lucky enough to live in a town where wildlife co-habitate with us. As a matter of fact, in my opinion, we humans are living in THEIR neighborhood. Lord knows we cause them innumerable challenges, as they travel through our landscaped yards using ancient routes to water; roam through our developments at night, as they have for centuries, making their rounds as they search for food, etc. I have heard numerous stories from folks about ‘close encounter’ wildlife sightings (I myself have seen a mountain lion in a tree right down the street from our house, in broad daylight in that case!). It’s awe inspiring to think of.
There’s a real debate in this country right now, between those who would like to pave and/or develop every available square inch of land no matter what that does to the wildlife population and those who (like me) think it vital to our collective souls to ensure that we will always have open space and places where wildlife can exist. I think that’s why this year’s midterm election is so important. Can you guess which political party cares about protecting the environment and which cares little or nothing about that? I’m sure you can. If not, you should do some research, decide what’s important to you, and then VOTE. Make your voice heard.
It’s the patriotic thing to do.
By the way, don’t forget to check out this week’s broadcast/podcast in Zack’s previous blog entry.