Sunday, September 25, 2011


Seeing and Studying the Unknown

Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac, with Essays on Conservation from Round River (1970; rpt. New York: Ballantine Books, 1984), p. 220:
Wildlife research started as a professional priestcraft. The more difficult and laborious research problems must doubtless remain in professional hands, but there are plenty of problems suitable for all grades of amateurs....Thus Margaret Morse Nice, an amateur ornithologist, studied song sparrows in her back yard. She has become a world-authority on bird behavior, and has out-thought and outworked many a professional student of social organization in birds. Charles L. Broley, a banker, banded eagles for fun. He discovered a hitherto unknown fact: that some eagles nest in the South in winter, and then go vacationing to the north woods. Norman and Stuart Criddle, wheat ranchers on the Manitoba prairies, studied the fauna and flora of their farm, and became recognized authorities on everything from local botany to wildlife cycles. Elliott S. Barker, a cowman in the New Mexico mountains, has written one of the two best books on that elusive cat: the mountain lion. Do not let anyone tell you that these people made work out of play. They simply realized that the most fun lies in seeing and studying the unknown.

<< Home
Newer›  ‹Older

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?