Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Loose Feathers #5

  • One person has announced a plan to try to confirm the imperial woodpecker story that came to light last week.
  • Nuthatch suggests that we kick the catalogue habit, gives reasons why, and provides a list of mail-order companies along with their contact information.
  • Grizzly bears in the vicinity of Yellowstone National Park may be removed from the list of threatened species. Biologists working for the government consider the species to have recovered, and the numbers seem to bear that out. Some objections have been raised; the most significant appears to be that the change will remove protections from the land required for the bears' survival. My only concern is that decisions like this be made by the wildlife professionals and not on the basis of political pressure.
  • In other bear news, New Jersey is permitting another six-day bear hunt this year as part of a five-year management plan.
  • Fairfax County, Virginia, is implementing an ordinance that would ban people from feeding waterfowl; the measure is particularly aimed at Canada geese. This seems to me to be a sensible approach to goose control. Part of the reason that geese are so numerous is that humans have created ideal habitats for them. Banning feeding is one step towards making the area a little less hospitable.
  • Ozone levels in the Shenandoah Valley National Park are being reduced thanks to federal regulations on power plant and industrial emissions. Ozone had reached unhealthy levels in years prior to the reduction in pollution, a situation that could create problems for hikers and others engaging in physically stressful activities in the national park. (Via Capital Weather)
  • Tangled Bank #41 is up at Flags and Lollipops.