UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not. —The Lorax, by Dr. Seuss
Happy Earth Day, to this one and only, beautiful but non-disposable blue sphere of ours! This year’s theme is climate change: the faces of climate change and its impact on the planet.
Click here for a quick read on the Top 10 Ways to Make Every Day Earth Day — from using less water, to cutting back on printing, to curbing the bottled-water addiction. Incredibly easy tips for the average human! And if you’re up for a more intense viewing on the subject of climate change, here’s a TEDtalks clip featuring Allan Savory: “How to green the world’s deserts and reverse climate change.” It’s long, but completely fascinating.
The Faces of Climate Change: Earth Day 2013, Courtesy of the Earth Day Network
National Park Week 2013, Courtesy of the National Park Service
National Park Week is April 20-28, 2013 — So walk, meander, run, bike, or trail-ride your way to your nearest one! Admission to every national park is FREE Monday through Friday.
Love your national parks, national wildlife refuges, and national forests — numbering more than 2,000 — and continue to support them by your mere presence (especially now). And above all else, bask in the beauty of these wondrous spaces!
A Great blue heron rests in the Everglades of the Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
Heading into the dappled cypress swamp along the boardwalk in the Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
The cypress swamp in winter of the Big Cypress National Preserve
The remaining entrance fee-free dates for 2013 are:
- August 25 (National Park Service Birthday, or Pre-FeyGirl Birthday)
- September 28 (National Public Lands Day)
- November 9-11 (Veterans Day weekend)
There’s so much color in the depths of South Florida, but this little one’s not native to the area. It’s native to a region where I was raised (roundabout, anyways). When I think of COLOR, my brain always returns to the petite endangered Gouldian Finch — also known as the Rainbow Finch, appropriately.
This spectacularly-colored little bird is native to Australia, where their numbers have decreased dramatically throughout the 20th century due to habitat loss. They remain an endangered species in their natural habitat, with less than 2,500 remaining. While attempts at their reintroduction have proved unsuccessful, thankfully these lovely finches are the subject of a conservation program in Australia. There are currently plans to recover and conserve their natural habitats, with management guidelines in place to educate landholders about land management, promoting the recovery program, and Gouldian Finch conservation. They’re also popular birds in captivity and among breeders, which keeps their general populations higher.
Gouldian (Rainbow) Finch posing at his sanctuary in Butterfly World
In 1992, the species was classified as endangered in the wild. That same year, Catwoman stuffed a poor Gouldian into her mouth in Batman Returns — some say, to raise awareness for their plight.
Here’s to wishing all the best for this beautiful and bright little bird!
Everglades Poster Celebrating Marjory Stoneman Douglas
The first-ever EVERGLADES DAY is this Sunday, April 7…. Fantastic! Many thanks to all of those who worked so hard to make this a legislative priority, highlighting and escalating issues surrounding the Everglades, as well as renewing the area’s restoration efforts. What a perfect time to visit and explore the ‘glades — and love this beautifully vital, rare, but endangered and always-threatened ecosystem. Check out the link below for events from Miami to Naples to West Palm Beach!
From the Everglades Foundation:
The first official Everglades Day will be celebrated on April 7, 2013. In addition to recognizing what an important resource this ecosystem is, not only to the state of Florida, but to America, the day will also honor Everglades activist Marjory Stoneman Douglas, as it is designated to be held on her birthday.
The Florida Legislature voted in favor of an Everglades Day on March 7, 2012. From a National Parks Conservation Association press release: “The state’s support for an official Everglades Day will ensure that the Everglades ecosystem remains a top priority for elected officials and all Floridians while honoring Douglas’s legacy for protecting the River of Grass. . . Each time we turn dirt on an Everglades restoration project, we are protecting our drinking water supply, creating jobs and fulfilling a promise to protect our national parks, wildlife, and family memories….”
Some of the sights from one of the event locations, Grassy Waters:
Love and respect this place. Please.
Everglades Vista Along the Hog Hammock Trail
From Audubon Florida:
The Sugar Industry has launched an effort to further weaken Everglades cleanup efforts, load more of the expenses on the taxpayers, and have the Legislature attempt to nullify an important part of Florida’s Constitution. Your voice is needed right now to protect the Everglades — send a letter using the form below.
The House State Affairs Committee will act TOMORROW, Thursday, March 7 on a yet-unnumbered bill the Sugar industry has drafted. This bad bill attempts to insulate Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) farmers from having to do anything more to pay for or clean up their own pollution by codifying in law a dubious claim that Best management Practices (BMPs) are effectively reducing phosphorus pollution.
If the bill passes, the Everglades loses and you lose. Take action right now by sending a letter using the form below….
Click the Audubon Florida link here, to access more info and sign your name against “Sugar’s poison pill.” Help protect this already severely threatened, valuable ecosystem — the only one of its kind on the planet!
Great Egret in Grassy Waters — historically a key component of the Everglades watershed
Cypress Swamp of the Big Cypress National Preserve, Everglades