wildlife | pg.3

Is Going Green Just a Feel-Good Choice?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | November 18th, 2010 | 5 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: automobiles, bats, bird deaths, birds, Canada geese, canoe, carbon emissions, cars, chemicals, climate change, CO2, eco-friendly, energy, environment, environmental toxins, environmentalist, fossil fuels, green, green building, greenwashing, Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, kayak, kayaking, landfills, LEED, LEED buildings, LEED certification, nature enthusiasts, nature photography, nature photos, photography, plastic, power grid, recreation, recycler, recycling, sandhill cranes, save the environment, skyscrapers, songbirds, toxins, transportation, travel, turbines, water sports, weather, wildlife, wind farms, wind power

Sandhill cranes

Buying a kayak qualifies as a “big purchase” for my family, and my husband and I recently took that huge step. Although we’ve had a canoe for a long time, this is our first acquisition of this type of silent-sports, aquatic craft.

Collared, Banded and Tagged: Are We Overtracking Wildlife?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | October 26th, 2010 | 5 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: bird banding, Eco Travel, elk, endangered-species, environment, Finding Beauty in a Broken World, Natural Habitat, nature, radio collaring, radio telemetry, research, tagging, Terry Tempest Williams, tracking, travel, whooping cranes, wild animals, wildlife, Wisconsin, wolves, Yellowstone National Park

Ever since they were reintroduced to Wisconsin in 1995, I’ve wanted to see an elk in my home state. Last month, my dream was realized when I spotted three of them during a trip to the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest in Wisconsin’s Northwoods. One evening, while driving slowly up and down the forest roads at dusk, my husband and I saw three elk crossing the pavement ahead of us.

Are Animals Taking the Blame for Our Bad Behavior?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | September 27th, 2010 | 6 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: animals, Bryce Canyon National Park, buffalo, camping, Coyote, Eco Travel, environment, Glacier National Park, grizzly bears, hiking, hoodoos, Idaho, Katmai National Park, Montana, national parks, nature, Paiutes, wildlife, Wyoming, Yellowstone National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

There are many Native American stories regarding the stunning red, orange and white hoodoos in Utah’s Bryce Canyon National Park. The Paiute Indians call the park Unka-timpe-wa-wince-pockich — which means “red rocks standing like men in a bowl-shaped canyon.” According to one of their myths, a long time ago a group of people moved into the area and made Coyote angry with their bad behavior. Coyote put a curse on the people, turning them to stone. The canyon’s hoodoos are these Legend People.

How Far Should We Go to Rescue At-Risk Species?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | July 16th, 2010 | 8 Comments
topic: Green Living | tags: assisted migration, Australia, biodiversity, botanic gardens, butterfly, citizen activists, citizen science, climate change, dune thistle, ecology, endangered, environment, environmental activists, extinct, extinction, fauna, flora, Florida torreya, global-warming, habitat destruction, natural habitats, plants, Queensland, species extinction, Torreya Guardians, wildflower, wildlife

Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge

The white lemuroid possum may soon hold a brand-new world title: First species to go extinct due to climate change.

In December 2009, scientists reported that the possum is missing from its only home in the mountain forests of northern Queensland, Australia. It hasn’t been seen there in three years. A slight temperature rise (of only 1 or 2 degrees) is likely the reason: The possum typically dies in as few as four or five hours at 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

Does a Wildlife Photo Have to Be “Wild”?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | April 20th, 2010 | 8 Comments
topic: Eco Travel | tags: AlaskaPhotographics.com, Backpacker, bald eagle, BBC's Planet Earth, Defenders of Wildlife, digital photogaphy, Disney, game farm animals, Getty Images, Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom, National Wildlife Federation, nature prints, PBS Nature, photography, snow leopard, wildlife, wolf

If you’re a nature enthusiast, chances are that somewhere in your home you display at least one image of a wild animal in its natural habitat: a framed photo hanging on your wall of a black wolf peeking through the leaves, a calendar on your desk with 12 glossy shots of snow leopards in rocky places or several conservation magazines — whose covers depict eagles or hummingbirds in flight — stacked on your coffee table.

Should We Stop Designating Lands As “National Parks”?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | February 15th, 2010 | 16 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: Bryce Canyon National Park, Grand Canyon, helicopter tours, Ken Burns, national parks, snowmobiles, wildlife, Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park

National parks need to be killed.

It’s a shocking idea I came across recently. Ken Burns’s newest PBS series aside, they’re doing more harm than good to our places of natural grandeur and dwindling native eco-systems.

If I Call for Your Attention, Will It Pick Up?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | December 18th, 2009 | 6 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: aluminum cans, David de Rothschild, garbage, Great Pacific Garbage Patch, landfill, litter, marine litter, nature, plastic bags, plastic bottles, plastic containers, Plastiki, recycling, trash, waste, wilderness, wildlife

About 80 percent of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch comes from trash on land. ©John H. Gaukel.

It usually starts with one plastic water bottle or one beer can, casually tossed aside, just visible in the underbrush off the side of the trail where I’m walking. My thoughts are soon torn away from nature and “What a beautiful place this is,” to “What an eyesore; what the heck was that person thinking?” And then, all of a sudden, what just a moment ago looked to me like a pristine wilderness transforms into a one-item garbage dump. All I can focus on is that one rusty can or bent bottle.

Face to Face with Polar Bears in Manitoba

Wendy Worrall Redal by Wendy Worrall Redal | November 27th, 2009 | 1 Comment
topic: Eco Travel | tags: arctic, Churchill, excursions, Manitoba, Natural Habitat, natural world, nature, northern lights, polar bear expedition, polar-bears, wild, wild animals, wilderness, wildlife

Looking-in-windowcropped

Credit: Wendy Worrall Redal

I can still feel the Arctic air, sharp and clean. I can see the late-afternoon sunset, a glowing band of gold, then scarlet, then deep rose, lingering on the horizon. I can hear the yip of the sled dogs, avid to dash across the snow. But what remains most vivid in my memories of the past week is the image of my daughter’s face, nose to nose with an enormous polar bear.

What Makes a Nature Photograph “Real”?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | October 16th, 2009 | 9 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: aurora borealis, digital photos, Eco Travel, eco-travelers, images, Matthew B. Brady, nature photography, northern lights, photo illustration, photography, polar-bears, Time magazine, wilderness, wildlife, wolf

Bearfeature

“After” photo: ship is gone; more highlights (see the “Before” photo below). ©Candice Gaukel Andrews

It looked perfect through the lens. I had the shot all lined up: blue mountain in the background, a rocky trail winding through the middle, and wildflowers in the foreground that made up two-thirds of the composition. I rotated the polarizing filter just enough so that I had a bright blue sky. Click.

Can Eco-Tours Help the Future of Spirit Bears?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | October 12th, 2009 | No Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: bears, British Columbia, Canada, conservation, Eco Travel, nature, nature travel, nature trips, protecting wildlife, rainforests, solitude, wild animals, wilderness, wildlife

polarbearfeature

Only about 400 Spirit Bears remain. ©Candice Gaukel Andrews

It almost sounds mythical.

But there’s truly a place on the far western edge of our continent where a rare animal — a white black bear — can still hunt, fish, gather berries and raise cubs unbothered by humans. There are no roads here, no cut trails, few settlements and even fewer trappings of civilization. It’s a good place to be a bear.