March 29, 2014
Image credit: Google Images
What began in Sydney, Australia in 2007, has now expanded and grown to become a Global Cultural Event and celebration, with countless Countries, Nations, People, Organizations and Businesses involved, each in their own way, showing their love and respect for our Planet, for our Mother Earth.
Tonight at 8:30 PM once again, the entire Planet will have the chance to show its respect and love for this place that we all call home, Mother Earth.
Each corner of the Planet will observe this hour of lights out, at their own local time.
By collectively turning off our power, we can all demonstrate that we do care for this place that gives us all that we need to live, survive and thrive as a species.
She gives her all to us, can we say the same?
So, won’t you please join with the millions of concerned others just like you and turn off your lights, for at least one hour tonight, beginning at 8:30 PM?
The fact that this event continues to grow exponentially every year and is now reaching even the most remote of areas of the Globe, says that we do care and that we do want to make the world a better place.
May God continue to Bless us all and may we all continue to Honor Mother Earth on this and every night.
Places to learn more:
Earth Hour: Millions to switch off lights around the world
Earth Hour: Time and date
Earth Hour – Wikipedia
March 28, 2014
The Constitution of the United States Of America: Public Domain
A WP friend sent me some links yesterday that he thought I might find interesting.
He knows that I am passionate about animals and their safekeeping on this Planet and wondered if this might be something I would want to do a story about it, or at least to be made aware of.
He recalled my recent story about the activist bomber the FBI were hunting for and thought I might want to know about this.
Well, as it turns out, he was right, it was quite illuminating.
After looking at all of the stories, I was wondering if I had been living under rock or what?
I was not aware of what follows here.
These Ag-Gag Laws or Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, or AETA, were implemented by President Bush in 2006, to protect private property, mostly agricultural companies, from harm, or damage, by acts of domestic terrorism by hard-core animal activists.
I think that is correct, but do please read the act and decide for yourself about my definition of it.
Anyway, it seems that the interpretation of this law is presenting many of the biggest problems.
People just can’t seem to understand what an animal enterprise actually is?
Therein lies the rub for all concerned.
So, when no one is sure just who is right, or on the right side of the law, what always happens in this country?
Why of course, Lawyers are hired, cases are tied up in the courts forever and in the end, as was in this case, it may get tossed out anyway.
In my humble opinion, “What a colossal waste of time and money this all is!”
But, back to my friend and his query in his email, “Are our Civil Liberties being taken away by these Ag-Gag laws?
Let’s talk about that.
This case was dismissed last year and was the first one to be brought to trial, against a women who had used her cell phone to record some pretty heinous treatment or torture of animals.
You see, Big Businesses all over our Globe, do not want the general public to know about all their dirty little secrets.
Do you know what the FOIA, or Freedom of Information Act means, or is?
Read more on this here: What is the FOIA
When those who enforce the law in this country hear the press, or an activist using this word, they get chills because they know that sooner or later, the truth must come out, and if they are dancing on the edge of the truth in any way, they could be in big trouble.
People like this woman, who is not an eco-terrorist running around setting buildings on fire, or exploding bombs, are in a way like me, we just want to put this evil out there, make it public knowledge, so that you and all those who read Blogs like this, will get ” as mad as hell “ and scream bloody murder until they stop.
So then, when people like this brave young woman from Utah, or like me, and so many others who are only interested in stopping the illicit or tortuous acts, by these monsters, why does it have to end up in our Federal Courts?
Because this is America and this is how we work.
The following may come as no surprise to anyone on either side:
The wide range of groups who oppose this bill include: The American Civil liberties Union or ACLU, United Farm Workers, PETA, Mercy for Animals, as well as the following: Broad group signs on to Oppose Ag-Gag Laws
Those who want to keep it intact are of course, the slaughter industry of poultry and livestock, etc. or all who those engage in the highly profitable business of killing animals for consumption.
Some places to learn more:
Why Did the FBI Label Ryan Shapiro’s Dissertation on Animal Rights a Threat to National Security?
Animal Rights and the Erosion of the First Amendment: AETA, Ag-Gag and Why You Should Care
Nation’s first ‘ag gag’ prosecution dismissed in Utah
First “Ag-Gag” Prosecution: Utah Woman Filmed a Slaughterhouse from the Public Street
We’re Suing Idaho to Overturn #AgGag Law Against Filming Animal Cruelty
March 25, 2014
Picture credit: Walkingfox
You know the old saying, “when God closes one door, he opens another?”
After the fighting, the endless wasted phone calls, the many days of ugliness and pain, connected to our Forest and the constant logging trucks full of pine trees going up our road, I was exhausted, defeated and depressed.
It had all been for nothing, they had won, the trees had lost. (today again, as I write this, six more trucks filled to the top.)
I did not think I could or would ever feel like writing again!
But, the day before yesterday, out of the “blue” showed up, not one, but a pair of beautiful Bluebirds and I had not seen one of them since many years ago in Yellowstone.
And if that was not enough of a blessing, quite unbelievably, they chose one of our nest boxes and are now making it their home.
Then yesterday morning, a blessing to end all blessings in my bird admiration, obsession lifetime, and the reason to give thanks yet once again to God, for giving me/us eyes.
For these eyes would see a bird that I have never seen in my life, but have lusted after forever, a painted bunting was in the feeder right in front of my kitchen window.
I had longed to see it in person, after years of staring at pictures of it in my countless Peterson Bird books and had always thought that when God made this stunning bird he said:
“hmm, let me think, I will make a bird and then paint a rainbow on it.”
The result I believe, is the painted bunting.
If you, like me since forever, have never seen one, don’t worry, your day will come.
But, back to yesterday.
I tried not breathe too loud, for fear of scaring him away and stood for what seemed like an eternity.
He kept eating, I stood perfectly still.
Finally, he filled himself up and left to go sit in the tree in front of my window, (it is on the left in this picture) where he stayed for over an hour, just watching, looking.
A reader of my gator-woman.com site had many years ago, sent me a gorgeous picture of hers in her yard in Orlando, which is about 35 miles Southeast of us.
Of course, I thanked her profusely for the generous gift, to show to others, but deep in my gut, I was so jealous.
That was years ago, and she had told me that they come to her yard every year.
So, I waited impatiently and wondered, what did they have in Orlando, that we did not here on the edge of the Ocala Forest?
So, yesterday, the waiting, the jealousy, the pining away, all ended.
He came back several times yesterday to eat, but I was sure it was to be a one time gift, or a one day stop-over.
But, unbelievably, here he is again today.
I did have several questions though, while watching him again this morning, eating furiously, mostly the peanuts, until he was full and then flying off once again.
But, of course, I am not content to just revel in his rainbow glory, I am now wondering where his mate could be?
(The books had said that they do not breed until late April and only winter with us before moving north to do so. It also said that the male often goes ahead alone to stake out an area)
Now, this is the greed or gluttony part!
Is he here looking for a possible home for them?
Can you only imagine, if his wife shows up in a few days and they decide to move into one of the other of our four nest boxes, in spite of what the books say?
There would be no containing my joy.
Looking back at what I have written here today, a movie we watched recently comes to mind: ” Seven” and the deadly sins. (with Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman.)
As you can clearly see, I am or have been guilty of several of them, when it comes to this bird!
A final PS:
My children used to say that they knew one day, they would get a call about me being killed while driving my car looking up at a bird! Not such a bad way to go really~
Places to learn more:
The Great Florida Birding Trail: Painted Buntings
Want to hear it, go here: Painted Bunting Sounds
March 23, 2014
Picture credits: Elephant: Ian Sewell, Basketball: Reisio, Rhino: Ikiwaner
“It would have been great to have shown you any of the player’s pictures, or the NBA Care’s Logo, or anything related to this story here, however, the NBA strictly forbids it!”
The American culture of sports figures and their ability to influence in this country is legendary, but when it becomes a mantra for saving the lives of animals being slaughtered, it reaches a new level of altruism altogether.
The hysteria for college basketball raging through America right now is at its peak, with March Madness and all that that implies!
So, what better time for a story about some of the stars of the sport and their efforts to put a bright spotlight on a criminal, barbaric act against animals.
These six NBA stars: “Pau Gasol of the Los Angeles Lakers, Tyson Chandler of the New York Knicks, Al Horford of the Atlanta Hawks, Serge Ibaka and Thabo Sefolosha of the Oklahoma City Thunder, and Joakim Noah of the Chicago Bulls “ have joined forces with ” NBA Cares “ and ” Wild Aid “ and are trying to put an end to the Global gluttonous appetite for Ivory, with their new PSA called NO Hype.
Throughout Africa, this heinous, horrendous, murdering business has left the country littered with the rotting elephant and rhino corpses left behind in the poacher’s plunderous hunts for animal body parts, namely Ivory.
This Public Service project may or may not work, but it does clearly succeed at one thing, a whole new group of people everywhere, will now be much more aware of the problem than before.
And it is a proven fact that when the public is alerted to, or has repeated exposure to a crime and those who perpetuate them, they can help to bring them to justice and end the criminal acts.
These men, these groups, are collectively doing what few others could right now, they are using their public persona and star power to promote the idea that these heinous acts and those who do them can and must be stopped, before the animals affected by illegal poaching are wiped off of the earth, forever.
These six men, NBA Cares and Wild Aid, are all about giving back and that’s NO HYPE!
A few places to learn more:
NBA Athletes Launch Campaign Against Ivory and Rhino Horn Poaching
Pau Gasol part of NBA Cares Campaign against Ivory and Rhino horn poaching
‘No Hype’ NBA Cares, Nick Brandt and WildAid 30s
Paul Gasol and Wild Aid Media
NBA Athletes Speak Out to Save Africa’s Endangered Wildlife
March 21, 2014
One of our spectacular Longleaf Pine Trees and the obviously ignored weight limit sign on our road
As most of you know, passion comes easily when it concerns watching over Florida’s Wild things for me and patience does not visit me very often.
Well, for the past week to ten days, my patience has been pushed to the limit and beyond!
And today, it finally snapped.
We have watched, with gritted teeth every single day, as logging trucks go past our house filled to the top with fairly young-looking pine trees, 5-9 trips every day, for close to ten days now.
Yes, we were both counting them all.
So, what was it that broke the sullen silence on our part, you may ask?
It was when truck number two went down our road this morning.
All of the other days, it had always, only, been a red one, but today, the red one and a new blue went down our road to collect more trees.
That was it, I could not take it any more and started calling.
It began with our local Sheriff, which turned out to be a very nice call, they politely referred me to someone in the State Forest Department.
From there, it was on to the top of the list at the Florida Forest Service.
Mr. A. was most polite, extremely knowledgeable and quite patient, this last part was key to the success of this call.
He listened, so rare these days, and answered my many questions about the ”what, when, who and why.”
And finally, the dreaded, ”but why not?”
I kept hearing words that turned my stomach like , “they will grow back really fast” and ” it’s good for everything” when they are cut.
I know that this man meant well and that he is an expert on the subject. So then why did I feel so bad?
Because in the end, no one can, or will stop this.
The polite, carefully structured, carefully worded call, left me with such an empty feeling.
Like I had failed, again.
Something that, since beginning this Blog one year ago, has become a familiar experience, one I do not like much!
As he clearly said several times, any owners of land near us, can cut as many trees down as they like, even the Longleaf Pine because, he said, “it was NOT an Endangered Plant.”
When he claimed that they could even cut this tree down, my heart sank.
There was no hope, if this was true, although I could not understand how it could be so.
It is also unnerving that these trucks filled to the top with trees, are absolutely over the posted weight limit for our road and NO ONE apparently is concerned at all.
Even he admitted, that they were most likely over weight!
Can you even imagine meeting one of these trucks head-on, on any of the countless sharp curves on our road?
Think there would be any survivors in the car?
A brief history is in order for your better understanding.
At one time, this magnificent tree covered most of the entire South-Eastern United States, there were millions of them, like the nearly eradicated Bison in the West, both with pretty much the same ending.
Too often, Humans rule and take what and when they wish, with frequently little concern for the future of a species, or plant.
Several places referred to new plans for re-introducing this tree in other Southern States, but wouldn’t it be better to not take all of them in the first place and then have to do this?
The worst part of all of this, is the number of animals whose very existence depends on this very particular tree, like the now nearly extinct red cockaded woodpecker and others.
Here are my own words, on my website about this magnificent Tree: Gatorwoman/longleafpine
A few places to learn more:
The Longleaf Pine
The Longleaf Pine or Pinus palustris
Longleaf Pine For Sale
March 18, 2014
Gary Dorr – Nez Perce and Nebraska rancher Ben Gotschall.
Photo credit: Mary Anne Andrei / Bold Nebraska
This posting today may seem a bit off topic, but wait, it really is not.
It will also be posted to both of my Blogs, as it concerns both people and animals!
When was the last time that Cowboys and Indians found an Issue that they could agree upon in this Country?
Can’t seem to recall, can you?
Well an Issue that is critical to both sides right now, saving their land and water, has these unlikely partners joining forces for a very important Weeklong Event called the: Reject and Protect Campaign.
This page says it all: Call to Action
The group is called the Cowboy and Indian Alliance from Nebraska and they have organized what will be a week of events from April 22-27, that will culminate in Washington, D.C.
And if you are now asking what the connection is to this Blog about Wildlife, oh, it is only life, simply put, ALL LIFE, in these affected areas, is depending on what happens with the dreaded Keystone Pipeline.
If this continually failing, leaking, rupturing, disastrous mess called the Keystone Pipeline is allowed to run through this country unimpeded, it will, when it fails, as is has repeatedly done throughout its history, kill every living thing in its path, Human, plant and animal alike, they will all succumb to the deadly toxins that this pipeline will carry across our country.
This is a monumental, devastating decision that is about to be made and the wrong one spells death for millions.
We must never forget what lies directly under this pipeline on its journey, the Ogallala Aquifer and the life-giving water it brings to millions of those in the affected states.
Once water is contaminated, it’s all over.
How long can you politicians, masquerading as Humans, making these life altering decisions, drink sand?
Oh, I forgot, the people in Washington, D.C. making these critical decisions, will never have to worry about having clean water, to drink, they can always buy it in bottles, as they are quite well compensated for their few days annually of so-called work!
But for the millions of Indigenous People and other just average Americans, who are now living in the states where this pipeline will run, this may, or may not be an option.
Many of them, especially on Reservations, are already living at or below the poverty level and will not have the extra money to run to the store and buy bottled water, when theirs becomes poisoned with dirty tar sands crude oil.
Can we now talk about the Wildlife that will be affected by all of this?
The beautiful Sandhills of Central Nebraska, a place I have been to many times, are home to my beloved Sandhill Cranes by the millions, as well as countless other threatened Wild animals.
In just this area, there are: 243 Bird Species, 10 Butterfly Species and 37 Mammal Species.The numbers that will die if this pipeline is put in, will be in the millions, think BP and the Gulf!
Now these Wild animals and the many poor Native people and others, who will be devastated by their decision, are not at the top of any politicians list in Washington, I can promise you.
Why you ask?
Because, Wildlife do not vote, or write big campaign checks, so whether they live or die is not a high priority to Politicians.
And Native Americans will never support any candidate or politician, who poisons the very lifeblood of their people, the Ogallala Aquifer.
If you are able, perhaps you might join them in April in their desperate efforts to stop this Environmental train-wreck, known as the Keystone Pipeline.
Here are a few places to learn more:
Keystone XL pipeline may threaten Aquifer
3 Nebraska Senators sign letter urging rejection of Keystone
Keystone XL opponents express concerns
March 15, 2014
Comfry Jacobs protesting against the Wild Bison slaughter in Yellowstone.
Picture credit and kindly lent by: Deby Dixon photography
Just when it seemed that nothing could stop the endless Global human brutality against animals, a tiny miracle has just happened.
The slaughter of Yellowstone Bison has been stopped, for now.
Are you listening God, you surely must be?
Can one person really make a difference, well this man did.
His name is Comfrey Jacobs, and he absolutely refused to sit by and watch this horror continue and do nothing.
He stopped them in their tracks, or on the road, by chaining himself to a barrel blocking the road.
Do you know how cold it is in Yellowstone right now?
It is unbearable, I have been there in nearly every month of the year and as the locals always say, “ there are two season here, August and Winter, “ they are not kidding.
The campaign to slaughter these Wild Free Bison, is of course a result of intense, ongoing, pressure from the Montana Cattle Ranchers, who loath them and continue every year to claim that the Bison ” could infect their cows.”
These Wild Free Bison do not know where the state lines are, you stupid cattle ranchers, get over it!
Yellowstone has been their Ancestral home for millions of years, have long have you been there?
In the past few hundred years, the US Government and hired thugs, have killed millions of their Ancestors and these few remaining in Yellowstone, are all that is left, must they die for these yet another politically influenced project?
Of course, the man at the center of this is now awaiting his day in court, but guess what?
A trial will only bring more new support to help stop this insanity.
If I were closer, I would be at his trial every single day, for one thing, to say thank you.
“Dear Comfry, you speak for me, for the Bison and for so many people around the world, who feel exactly like you.”
But you are the one who did it, thank God for you.
If you any of you are close enough, perhaps you may go and show support for his selfless actions.
The single fly in this ointment, and of course you knew that there would have to be at least one, this man will be tried by a judge, there will be no jury.
Sometimes, I feel so defeated, like I am talking to the wind, or to just the few of you, who come here to this little, insignificant Blog and like me, want to keep animals everywhere safe.
And yes, sometimes, I feel like we are not really making a difference, or that nothing will ever change, but then this happens and my batteries are completely charged up all over again.
Look out world, here we come!
So you say you want to know more:
Yellowstone Announces End to Slaughter
Protester Attempts to Stop Bison Slaughter in Yellowstone
Man Risks Arrest Blocking Road
March 13, 2014
On our news this morning was the story of a very dangerous suspect, being sought by the FBI in Hawaii, for some bombings in California.
Well, you know that they had my undivided attention, as soon as I heard the words animal activists and bombings used in the same sentence.
After very little searching, a huge amount of data was found about this man and his story, but as it turned out, I had the wrong idea about this altogether.
You see, this man is not going after animal activists, he IS one and the bombings that he is being accused of, or is alleged to have done, were done on the properties of those he believed to be harming animals.
And these alleged crimes were committed by him they say, in 2003, or over 10 years ago.
He has been on the FBI’s list of ” Most Wanted Domestic Terrorists.” since 2009.
I have since read at least six different stories looking for more and here is I what I have found.
This man is a middle class, well-bred, fairly well educated person, who does not like what is being done to animals by several large Corporations.
They are experimenting on them and basically torturing them.
He, like many of those who read this Blog, probably tried many different ways to stop this and like we often have, probably got absolutely nowhere.
But, what he chose to do next, is where I personally part ways with him, as I do not believe in violence.
But, do I understand and agree with his passion?
You bet I do!
I have heard all of you say so many times over the past year here, that you appreciate my passion for this subject.
I am willing to do any and every thing that I can, to stop animals from being hurt, harmed, tortured, euthanized or killed.
However, I will not ever use a weapon because I find them brutal and often think that somewhere in my family, there must have been some Quakers or Amish, as I intensely dislike guns, and all weapons.
Now for what may come as a shocking revelation to all of you and the FBI if they are reading this, “ I hope that he is not ever found.”
Sometimes, in history, it has seemed that the only way to stop a wrong behavior by out of control, uncaring, evil, doing insidious things, is to hurt them back.
This very brave young man has, for all intents and purposes, thrown his life away, for if he is ever caught, it will be life in prison for his actions, which by the way, if you read any of the stories below, it seems that no one was hurt and the damage to the buildings in question, was quite minor.
But, I would/will always do my resisting and objecting to any cause, animal or otherwise, in a nonviolent way.
You must think of Gandhi and how he fought the British and eventually got them out of India.
Non violent, non co-operation, it did work in the end!
If we are to ever stop this evil behavior, I personally think that we must begin in the hearts of all people, not just these monsters in laboratories secretly carrying out their insidious deeds on innocent animals.
We must teach the whole world, yes, the whole, entire world, that animals are just like us, only we do not speak their language.
The FBI is/has been hunting this man for 10 years and has a huge reward of $250,000 out for him.
He is, if you can believe this, after all of the things that happen in this country every single day, the FBI’s “Most Wanted Terrorist.”
Is it possible that we in this Country, may perhaps have our priorities just a wee bit out-of-order?
We are on a daily basis, being poisoned by things that Monsanto and various other huge companies produce and sell to us.
Is it likely that any of them will ever be charged with the deaths that they are most certainly causing?
Yet this man, who wants to stop animals from being endlessly tortured and killed for corporate profits, did what he thought might bring attention to, or shine a light on, a despicable group of people, is being hunted like a mass murderer.
What a world.
What is that old saying?
“There, but for the Grace of God?”
To learn more:
There are countless news stories, but this first one caught my eye~
Vegan with a 9mm Handgun
Hawaii Terror Suspect
Berkeley-Born “Most Wanted” Terrorist
March 9, 2014
A Baby Burrowing Owl
Picture credit: Adamantios
It’s spring in Florida and the babies are just bustin’ out all over.
There are celebrations everywhere here, with so many places to go and join in on the excitement and have fun in the beautiful Florida sunshine!
Florida is without a doubt, home to some of the most beautiful and also most Endangered Birds in America, like the Burrowing Owl.
If you have seen the movie Hoot, it is about our Endangered Florida Burrowing Owl and was all filmed right here, well all except for the Montana scenes~
The Florida scenery is gorgeous and the film is inspiring, hopefully you and your children will love it and find it as wonderful as I did.
And if you are a Jimmy Buffett fan, the music and the man are both in the movie, yet another reason to love it~
If like me, you treasure wildlife and animals, especially Birds, Audubon of Florida has all of the people, places, events and opportunities to get involved, on their website and their Blog.
Education is at the very heart of Florida Audubon and this outstanding web site has been blessed with a plethora of it.
Please do begin your Audubon Adventure here: Audubon of Florida
You will always find many listings of upcoming things to do on their Events page: Events and Programs
Here is one example: A Baby Owl Shower is happening on May 10 (how can this not be fun)
Go here to find information about Florida birds that are at risk: Florida’s Imperiled Birds
The Audubon Blog keeps you up to date on all things Audubon, and you might even sign up: The News Blog
There is even a place to keep track of particular Bills affecting Florida birds and Wildlife here: Legislative Bill Tracker
This web site is undeniably, one of the most impressive and truly useful places to go to learn all about Florida’s wonderful World of Wildlife~
March 3, 2014
Picture credit: CITES Secretariat
” On 20 December 2013, at its 68th session, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) decided to proclaim March 3, the day of the adoption of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), as World Wildlife Day, to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild fauna and flora.” — Wikipedia
Today, above all else, there is reason for hope in the WAR against those who are in the business of wildlife trafficking.
Their name is POACHER and they kill animals for their body parts and are bringing the populations of wildlife all over the world, to their knees with their lust and greed.
It has taken the loss of countless wild animals lives and many tragic scenes to get to this point, but it is a beginning.
Awareness is the key in all of this.
Thanks to the United Nations and other Global Wildlife groups, this day is now a reality, let the changing begin.
The more that we talk, write, call, fight for and expose these evil doers, the more responses that come to stop them.
If people do not know all of the facts, they cannot make the necessary changes.
But, now I believe that the tide is beginning to turn against those who do evil to animals.
Right now, many animals are facing certain extinction, as a direct result of these relentless monsters, who have demonstrated that they will not stop until they are either killed, or put in jail.
But this in and of itself, is not enough, what needs to change are the minds and hearts of people all over the world.
As Humans we must come to terms with the fact that we are capable of a very dark side, that we are guilty of allowing ourselves, or others to continue to commit these horrific, heinous acts.
We cannot just turn or look away, when we see or know that these things are happening.
We must get involved, we must force a change to this Global bad behavior.
Stopping mass animal murders begins in childhood, with parents, teachers and spiritual leaders, instilling a love and respect for animals on a daily basis.
Because, if our children are allowed to grow up without being exposed to the value of showing kindness towards animals and their environment, all could be lost.
When we teach them to love all creatures and respect their surroundings, we set the tone for a lifetime of good will.
It is up to each of us to be the guardians of our children’s well-rounded and complete education, which should of course, include the animals in the world around them.
What will you teach your child today about how we should all treat animals?
A good start would be to explain what World Wildlife Day means and why it was necessary to create it in the first place.
Here are several wonderful, hopeful and informative websites to celebrate this day:
World Wildlife Day
First-Ever World Wildlife Day
World Wildlife Day at Facebook
World Wildlife Day – Flicker