Tag Archives: ecosystem

Birds & wildlife require native plants and their bugs

chickadeesIt’s a funny thing, but completely logical when you think about it. One strong environmental indicator that a polluted body of water is clearing up, is birds returning to spend time around it. Birds eat insects and fishies, which don’t thrive in heavily polluted waterways. So when those creatures return, birds are the next neighbors to move in.

Something similar happens in neighborhoods where native plants are present. I learned at Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve that an insect automagically knows the difference between a native plant and an imported one (called an exotic) that look identical to us. Insects are able to eat plants that are native to their ecosystem but they cannot eat the pretty plant that looks the same but is from a different part of the world.

The result of planting native plants or fostering their growth, is an explosion in the bird and wildlife populations of your neighborhood. This lovely New York Times Op-Ed piece explains in very accessible language exactly why this is true. Contributor Douglas W. Tallamy makes a nice case for why we should care enough about this phenomenon to stop planting for aesthetics alone and instead, consider the overall ecological benefits of the plants we choose to nurture and introduce to our own local ecosystem – which they will make or break.

On a side note and of especial interest to journalists, take a look at the photo inset featured in my screenshot. This is the first time I’ve seen an inset be a link to a photo gallery – access it by clicking anywhere in the inset area.

GMO apples will begin the end of real food. Tell Feds NO.

wicked witch says trust me GMO apple is safeSubmit your comment to the US federal government saying why you stand against the approval of GMO apples. The time to act is now! Here’s some scientific background on GMO apples are so bad, even McDonalds and Gerber doesn’t want them. After you post your comment, please share it with us. Here’s mine:

Private companies cannot be allowed to put in claims to own nature or our food supply. It’s time to radically head off manufacturers of GMOs from attempts to take over society by stopping them from selling their products, ever. The US government must act immediately to make the GMO process and the sale of GMO seeds, illegal.

GMO products and patented seeds, are responsible for the killing of bees, natural ecosystems, and ring the death knoll for small farms around the world.

Our food system relies on bees for pollination. Ecosystems rely on a diversity of plant and animal life to thrive, much in the same way that human bodies do. Small farms are being seized and eradicated by GMO distributors through a variety of nefarious and underhanded moves.

GMO producers are dishonest and extremely dangerous.

You cannot allow them to continue harming the earth, our food supply and the people of the United States. GMO incursion is bad for people and the natural world that God created, which it is the fundamental and inalienable right of US citizens and all people, to enjoy.

The myth is being sold by self-serving producers of mono-culture crops that our societies will be better, or safer, if we allow them to take over the growing process, beginning with seed alteration and patenting, but this is the reverse of true. Mono-cultures are exactly the opposite of good, and the results GMO companies bring into the world are disastrous over both the long and short terms.

The approval of GMO apple seeds will open the door to other varieties of patented seeds being brought into the food supply chain. In the short run, family farmers and small farms will be ruined. In the long term, GMO producers want to make sure that only their eco-system destroying apples can be planted and sold. They want to make natural seeds illegal and own the growing process from start to finish.

GMO crops which contain pesticides also produce pesticides resistant super-insects that cannot be controlled by normal strength pesticides. The GMO crops are directly responsible for the super-insects wiping out natural crops (grown by family/small farmers) in regions where the GMO crops that create them are grown. We can only imagine how bad the pesticide-based crops will reveal themselves to be for human health.

GMO companies seek to replace good, healthy food grown by loving hands which shares a beneficial, symbiotic exchange with nature … with chemically altered food that destroys nature, ecosystems, the natural pollination process (and bees), health, family farms and world society as we know it.

They cannot be allowed to continue to operate in society. There must be NO place for them at all. Please, cast a vote for the wellbeing of United States residents and the world at large, by banning GMO seeds from entering the world.

Facebook cofounder illegally destroys Redwood forest

Facebook cofounder intentionally damages Redwood forestFacebook cofounder Sean Parker decided he just had to have a fantasy wedding in the Redwood forest in California, one of the few old growth forest areas left in North America. And fantasy, to Parker and his wife, means f up nature as much as you can. Because nature is nowhere near as cool as what you can buy with $10 million dollars or so and maybe because it’s exciting to break the law. Parker was fined and paid up without complaint: apparently, that was just part of the cost of destroying natural treasures for totally selfish ends. Grist author Holly Richmond comments:

It’s hard to decide what’s most depressing about this. Is it that rich douchebags can buy their way out of anything? That you can fuck up the Earth if you can afford it? That Parker and Co. made no significant effort to limit erosion and redwood damage? That the wedding industrial complex makes people think they’re entitled to barfalicious displays of excess? Thinking about it makes me feel old and tired. I’m gonna go back inside my hobbit-hole. Which, incidentally, I didn’t pay $10 million for.

The Atlantic’s Alex Madrigal quotes the California Coastal Commission Report, which details how much damage was done to the area’s ecosystem.

The Parker Respondents did not install any erosion control measures or any BMPs when they commenced development within the campground. Structures, walls and elevated platforms have been constructed immediately adjacent to Post Creek with no setbacks employed. The Parker Respondents have recently installed temporary fencing in an attempt to reduce potential impacts to Post Creek, but most of the development occurred without any such erosion-control protections in place. Increased erosion resulting from hardscaping and vegetation removal along streams impairs riparian corridors, streams, and, ultimately, shallow marine waters by increased sedimentation. Increased sediment loads in streams and coastal waters can increase turbidity, thereby reducing light transmission necessary for photosynthetic processes, reducing the growth of aquatic plants. Additionally, structures have been built up to and around existing redwoods and vegetation within the campground (Exhibit 10). Beyond immediate physical damage to individual trees, failure to provide adequate development buffers from redwood trees can negatively impact the underground lignotubers by which redwoods clonally reproduce, thus impeding propagation. The unpermitted development has thus impacted the existing redwood forest habitat and has likely caused sedimentation of Post Creek.

You can see before and after photos in both articles and guess what. They’re all disturbing.