Their World, Their Future~


ARKive – Images of Life on Earth
Picture credit: Animal World


As  the world celebrates a New Year, my thoughts are as usual,  focused on animals.

Recently there has been a lot of reflection and or controversy about the ESA, the Endangered Species Act turning 40 and whether or  not it is, gasp, still necessary.

Merely writing these words sent shivers down my spine.

Since it was first  signed into law by President Nixon in 1973,  the ESA  has seen many successes,  as well as  a few  failures, but the numbers alone,  are not the most critical factor, when it comes to the value or worth of this Act/Law.

The single most important reason for its need,  is above all,  to provide a buffer zone between humans and their world and the animals and plants/flora, that would face certain peril,  or indeed even extinction,  if it ceased to exist.

The success stories of the ESA are by now quite familiar: the Bald Eagle, Grizzly Bear,  Peregrine Falcon, Gray Wolf, California Condor and a wide array of birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles.

Their track record of success at 99% is most impressive.

The point is, the ESA has made a difference when little else could have.

Now, with the suggestion by some, that the ESA needs an overhaul, if the protection of those on the brink of extinction were left up to as has been suggested,  to individual states, where do you suppose their priorities would lie?

In Florida to date, we have seen little evidence that Governor Scott would protect wildlife or wild land, at the risk of offending a potential donor, as he is currently running for re-election and that means not biting the hands of those who write those big campaign checks.

The Governor  is, I am sure,  being pressured by great hordes of developers to sell them extremely valuable land and let the concrete pouring begin.

I am not against development, but  am very much opposed to allowing it to be done  in wildlife sensitive areas where many animals right now are already in daily conflicts with humans and dying for merely trying to survive.

Human and wildlife encounters are becoming daily news here in Florida, with the recent tragic Black Bear stories, the ongoing Panthers human/conflicts, Brown Pelicans once again being maimed by those who do not wish to share their fish bounty, wild creatures all over our state being caught and sold out of the country  to the highest bidders, it  goes on and on.

When  the safety and protection of threatened animals is left to those with personal goals, or ulterior motives, animals will always lose.

So, the first priority for me in this brand new year, is to assure that the Endangered Species Act remains the single greatest safety net in this country for those with no voice.

As this new  year begins, how many of us are truly aware of that delicate web that holds the lives of so many animals and plants together?

If the ESA is allowed to be altered,  as is being proposed right now and the power to control it is  turned over to individual states, what will they do?

Will their first thoughts be of the welfare of those now  barely hanging on, or will they be pressured or enticed  into building new malls, shopping centers, casinos and condos, and the animals can all  be damned?

Please keep this in mind and respond,  if like me, you don’t believe that the lives of animals should be controlled by those who may not have their best interests in mind.

It is after all, their world, their future~


Some powerful sources of information about this vital issue:

Endangered Species Act Is As Important As Ever

Keep Endangered Species Act Strong

Grizzlies An Issue As Endangered Species Act Turns 40

The Endangered Species Act  Turns 40

At 40, US Endangered Species Act Faces Attacks 

The Endangered Species Act Celebrates Forty Years Of Wildlife Protection (VIDEO)

Defending The Endangered Species Act

 40 Species For 40 Years Of  The Endangered Species Act



24 thoughts on “Their World, Their Future~

  1. Happy New Year gatorwoman! (and to your readership)

    Way to kick-off 2014; bringing awareness to such a vital bit of protection for those without a voice (or a vote for that matter.)
    Thank you for the linky resources above – I intend on further educating myself on this issue.

    “…individual states…what will they do?…” – indeed… It’s not like members of a protected/threatened species can move to another state if the new policies prove to be detrimental…

    Keep up the good works!

  2. As always, a great post.

    I’m a bit more pessimistic than you are. I am against development. I believe that humanity has been nothing more and nothing less than a blight on this planet. I believe that our net effect has been very, very negative. We have poisoned vast swaths of it. We have caused the extinction of countless species of animals–not to mention the needless killing of billions of other animals. (I am echoing here the dedication to Nick Brandt’s great new book “Across the Ravaged Land.”)

    At every turn, humans put their individual desires–not just needs, but mere desires–ahead of everything else: ahead of all concerns for animals or even other humans. Here in the United States, we seem to have slipped back from our state of awareness of the early 1970s. When I was a young man, I thought that people agreed almost universally that we need to maintain the health of our planet. I was apparently mistaken then. And now it has become even worse. In particular, many members of the Republican party appear to be perfectly willing to sacrifice every good thing to greed.

    I’m sorry that I’m so grim today. I’m just calling it as I see it.

    • Your comments are understood and I for the most part, concur.
      Try to not let them get you down.
      You can make a difference, even if it is only in your little corner of the world~
      There are still those who are fighting for the health of the planet and all that inhabit it.
      They are just a little bit harder to find.

      • Yes: one must continue to fight the good fight, hopeless though it may be.

        I am a great fan of Camus’s “The Plague.” That tells us how we must act in the face of the gravest dangers.

    • Thank you Dear Adam.
      Hope you and Timothy are bright eyed and bushy tailed this morning.
      It is a crisp 59 degrees here in the woods of Central Florida.
      We are in for a soaker later today~

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  5. With all the doom and gloom we are constantly subjected to it was good to see a piece of legislation that actually appears to have worked and brought a number of species back from the brink. It prompted me to see if anything similar existed in Australia. It seems we have the Endangered Species Protection Act which, unfortunately, did not appear until 1992. However, the Australian act looks to have been similarly effective with the environment minister removing 25 species from the Threatened Species List, effective from 14 December 2013.

  6. Thanks so much for highlighting this issue… I just signed a petition about it yesterday (I wish I could remember the organization, I’ll keep looking). As always… I’m in stunned awe.

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