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I Don’t Understand

©Jane Chesebrough

©Jane Chesebrough

I love going to the National Parks yet, everwhere I go, I find garbage, even at more remote trails at higher altitudes. This garbage was at a roadside pull-off right outside the dumpster. Is this a sign of the blatant disregard for the sanctity of the National Parks or ignorance of how to open the bear-proof containers?  I have become calmer over the years but  sometimes hesitate to go to parks on weekends because I get so irate over the refuse blowing about only feet away from numerous, well-placed garbage recepticles. It is harder to take a photo in the wilderness without garbage cluttering up the picture.

This is not good for the animals or for us. Animals will lose their fear of humans and come closer and interact. While this may give us a false sense of being able to “commune” with the animals, the results are disasterous.The parks have an ad that says “a fed bear is a dead bear” because once they get a taste for food, they will come amongst humans. These animals will keep coming back until the parks people capture them and release them in a more remote location.Sometimes this works, sometimes the animals keep coming back., even chasing the people.or  worse, attacking. Then the animal has to be destroyed. And the problem does not stop with bear-people contact.

Shortly before my arrival in the park 2 weeks ago, a  local woman from town was walking her pet on a well-used trail above the town. A pack of wolves attacked her dog and ate it. She was powerless to do anything about it. The park closed the trail  to hikers and printed posters that  gave guidelines to keep pets on leash and what behavours to use if you come in contact with a wolf. 

As an amateur photographer I try to be respectful though I can see the stress in the animal even as I shoot a photo from the car from some distance. I am starting to by-pass the line-ups beside the road where animals are gathered just to lighten the load of human-animal encounters. I am happy that I got  a few photos of the fox beside a parking lot. I also feel sorry for this fox.There was one young lad who came less than a bus-length away to snap a photo. The fox ran away as the boy stepped closer.  How long before some child goes up to it to feed the “cute doggie”? Will the fox charge? Or bite? And then get destroyed?
 I am very disturbed at the continuing disregard for the sacredness  of the land and it’s inhabitants as the parks allow more access to the public and commercial development.I will try to do my part and  pick up garbage when I go on my walks such as I did with the garbage in these photos and will limit my photos of the animals in my effort to be a good steward of the wilderness that we try to preserve and protect. I am actually honoured to pay the fees to help educate people , provide pull-off areas and upkeep trails into the front and back-country so as to minimise the impact on the land.

12 responses

  1. Northern Narratives

    I agree.

    April 17, 2012 at 2:38 pm

  2. I agree too!

    April 17, 2012 at 7:38 pm

  3. I like to visit this mudflats that in the upstream portion of a reservoir, and sadly I often see bottles in the water or caught up amongst the driftwood. I assume its from boaters, but who knows. They are all beyond my reach, so I can’t pick them up.

    I am under the impression that feeding foxes is common in Great Britain.

    April 18, 2012 at 8:25 am

  4. I agree and this is very well written. It’s sad that some people just don’t care.

    April 18, 2012 at 9:27 am

    • guess ineed to focus on the ones that do care…and it will catch on.

      April 19, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    • guess I need to focus on the ones that do care…and it will catch on.

      April 19, 2012 at 1:26 pm

  5. I agree too. Here in Finland it is absolutely forbidden to throw garbage to the Nature. Fortunately, people obey it very well.

    April 20, 2012 at 2:40 am

    • I remember when I grew up in Ontario we had anti-littering laws and that curbed the habit well. I think we should go back to that in every province, though the problem is in enforcing it.Jane

      …don’t let yesterday use up too much of today.” Cherokee proverb https://janechese.wordpress.com

      April 20, 2012 at 11:53 am

  6. Great post, so well-written, Jane. I agree and try to do my part in picking up. Thank you for sharing!

    April 22, 2012 at 7:06 pm

  7. thanks for picking up-think it does make a difference.

    April 22, 2012 at 10:21 pm

  8. I don’t understand either. It is too bad.

    April 28, 2012 at 4:52 am

    • we have choice to be a part of the problem or part of the solution. 🙂

      April 29, 2012 at 10:46 pm

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