Currently viewing the category: "Threats"

 

Due to gross similarities in size, food preference, and appearance, it is often asserted that bison and domestic cattle are ecological analogs. However, a review of their evolutionary history demonstrates that they have significant differences in evolutionary pressures that manifest themselves in strikingly different modes of resource exploitation.

Compared to domestic cattle, bison wander […]

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Cattle grazing in the Mojave Desert, California. Photo by George Wuerthner

Livestock advocates often state that cattle and sheep have merely “replaced” the native herbivores. And since plants are “adapted” to herbivory from native grazers, then “obviously” livestock grazing is compatible with ecosystem preservation. Some even go so far to claim that […]

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The Lake Plateau, part of the 900,000-acre plus Absaroka Beartooth Wilderness. Photo by George Wuerthner

Years ago, I moved to Livingston, Montana. Livingston strategically lies at the northwest corner of the Custer Gallatin National Forest’s Absaroka Beartooth Wilderness (known as AB Wilderness). One of the factors that attracted me to Livingston was the AB Wilderness. […]

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The recent article “Low Flows On Deschutes” highlights why irrigation is a significant threat to our river’s ecological integrity. https://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/environment/sudden-drops-in-deschutes-river-worries-biologists/article_c0f8df66-e3df-11ea-8d00-53d8f511683c.html

The majority of water removed from the Deschutes is used to grow irrigated pasture and hay for livestock not crops consumed directly by humans.  Photo by George Wuerthner

 

According to […]

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Old-growth grand fir on the Ochoco National Forest could be logged if the proposed removal of the 21-inch rule is adopted. Photo by George Wuerthner

 

The Forest Service has begun a 30 day comment period on its proposal to eliminate the 21-inch rule or what is known as […]

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Far more ignitions start by roads than in the backcountry. Ironically thinning forests will create more roads, hence more ignitions. Photo by George Wuerthner

Like zombies rising from the dead, legislators continue to push the flawed notion that logging can preclude large wildfires and protect communities.

The “Emergency Wildfire and […]

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Paradise Valley, Montana. Photo by George Wuerthner

 

Paradise Valley, Montana, is aptly named. The Yellowstone River flows north to Livingston, Montana, framed by the Absaroka Mountains on the east and the Gallatin Range on the West. It’s one of the most stunning landscapes in the entire West.

Due to its location […]

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Relict “historic” cottonwood along Missouri River. Photo by George Wuerthner

One hundred forty-nine miles of the Missouri River in Montana is a designated Wild and Scenic River. It is also within the 375,000 acres Missouri River Breaks National Monument, which includes the Lewis and Clark and Nez Perce National Historic Trails. […]

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Cattle grazing Mojave National Preserve, CA. Photo by George Wuerthner

The 1964 Wilderness Act requires federal agencies to protect and manage designated wilderness areas “to preserve its natural conditions.” Given that all domestic livestock are exotic alien animals and hardly contribute to “natural conditions,” one might assume that livestock production would be […]

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Ed. note: An earlier draft version of this post was inadvertently posted before final review. Please replace all prior copies with this final draft. 

 

Last summer, in a remote corner of the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming, in the one spot with just a little cell reception, I sat in my car listening by phone to […]

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey