Friday, April 24, 2015

"All over the country, we're learning to put an "I" in conservation."

Clay Schoenfeld wrote those words in his 1979 book titled "Down Wisconsin Sideroads."  I am extremely thankful for those generations who took initiative and put themselves in the middle of the conservation forefront.  You might be wondering what putting the "I" in conservation looks like. Well, I don't believe there is an easy answer to that.  One thing is for certain, you have to take personal action and see it through to the end.  For example, land management is a long process which should parallel the lifetime of land ownership.  However, not all of us own a piece of dirt so this isn't possible for everyone.  Just because you don't own land doesn't mean you can't have an impact on conservation. I personally do not own property but have recently joined a conservation committee related to deer management in my county.  It is a special feeling to be a part of a committee founded by and based on the principals of Aldo Leopold's land ethic.  Small committee's and even local grassroots movements can have major impacts on conservation.

 Schoenfeld begins a chapter by saying, "You don't have to be a world-famous ecologist writer to contribute to conservation.  I want to chronicle here the contributions of people who have made major dents in the sweep of environmental degradation: a forest ranger and his wife, a hermit, a small-town postman, a minor state bureaucrat, a housewife outdoorsperson, and a very young representative of a new generation." --I hope to be the latter

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