Farming – Return to the Past?

In former times, farmers used to rotate their crops, so that a field would have different crops grown in it each year over three of four years until the cycle started again. Often, in mixed farms, one year’s ‘crop’ would be the livestock allowed to feed on the field, resting the soil and replenishing it with their manure. The rationale for this was that different plants used different nutrients and attracted different pests and diseases. By moving the crops around, farmers could avoid depleting the soil of key nutrients and prevent the build-up of parasites. Then modern farming vastly reduced … Continue reading Farming – Return to the Past?

Living with Carnivores

On the eastern coast of England, a limestone outcrop called Humphrey Head juts out into the sea. This is the place where, allegedly, the last wolf in England was killed during the 14th Century. Since that time, the English have had no fear of sharing their living environment with large carnivores. Citizens of large continents don’t enjoy the same peace of mind. In greater Chicago alone, around 2,000 coyotes exist alongside humans. And as suburban areas of cities expand, people may find themselves coming face to face more often with animals they would usually expect to see in national parks. … Continue reading Living with Carnivores

More Hope for Whales

Tasmania, Australia, is the frequent site of a sad phenomenon, the cause of which still remains largely unknown. Stranded whales are often found on its beaches, and while conservationists return them to the ocean whenever they can, little was known about their fate. Now scientists at Australia’s national science agency, the CSIRO, have established through tagging that whales returned to the sea not only survived but also reunited with their pods. Good news for volunteers who try to rescue the 2000 or more whales stranded around the world every year. Continue reading More Hope for Whales