Posted in The Best of Flandrum Hill, tagged 2010, 2011, change, earth, Natural Phenomena, nature, new year, Nova Scotia, soul, weather on December 31, 2010 |
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The object of a new year is not that we should have a new year, but that we should have a new soul.
~ G.K. Chesterton
In the blink of an eye, another year has come and gone. The Earth is changing. Could we be too? Here in Cow Bay, we had our share of the extreme weather that made headline news across Canada in 2010. Numerous storm surges caused flooding along the coast while high winds brought down tall trees.
Still, there was much to be thankful for.
A mild winter and very early spring made hearts light. The warm summer that followed brought gorgeous blooms and amazing tree growth. When fall’s leaves finally turned, many welcomed the cool, fresh air on the tails of a wicked September heat wave. This winter has been very mild with little snowfall to date. Surely cold and snow are lurking just beyond the corner of the new year.
Though we may not have any control over the weather, we do have control over our response to it. As weather patterns continue to change in the year ahead, I wonder how we will respond both individually and collectively. Will we become smarter planners like the ants, or more likely to sing in the sun while it’s shining like the grasshoppers? Perhaps a little of both.
Natural phenomena and the effect of Nature on the spirit were frequent topics among my posts in 2010. I especially enjoyed writing about Nature’s potential to teach, comfort and inspire:
A few posts even made it to the front page of WordPress in 2010.
Deforestation, aggressive coyotes and our vulnerable coastline will continue to be concerns in the year ahead. However, regardless of what Nature has in store for us in 2011, we will always have much to be thankful for, including one another. Happy new year and happy trails to all in 2011!
All are but parts of one stupendous whole, whose body Nature is, and God the soul.
~ Alexander Pope
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Posted in Biodiversity, tagged 2010, Biodiversity, ecosystems, Gardening, native species, nature, Nova Scotia, Trees, wild animals, wild plants on January 13, 2010 |
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In an effort to increase awareness and encourage positive change, 2010 has been designated the International Year of Biodiversity by the United Nations.
What is biodiversity?
Basically, it’s the variety of life on earth: plant and animal species and the ecosystems that sustain them.
How does this variety affect our daily lives?
From the foods we eat to climate change, biodiversity affects us all.
Why should we be concerned?
Loss of biodiversity on the planet is happening at a rapid rate.
- Forests are being changed into croplands with devastating effects to climate.
- Species of plants and animals are being harvested at unsustainable rates.
- Changes to the timing of flowering and migration routes are affecting relationships between species within ecosystems.
- Introduced invasive species (plants, animals and micro-organisms) are threatening native species by competing for food and habitat.
- Pollution is creating dead zones in the ocean which can no longer sustain life.
What can be done at the local level?
Doing something about biodiversity can be as simple as encouraging the growth of native trees in your yard as opposed to growing exotic species that require extra maintenance to ensure their survival. It’s always amazed me how people move from the city to the country wanting to be close to nature, and then work so hard to tame the wild spaces in order to make them look ‘civilized.’
In the year ahead, I’ll be writing more on the subject of biodiversity, but for now it’s enough to simply introduce the subject.
We cannot win this battle to save species and environments without forging an emotional bond between ourselves and nature as well – for we will not fight to save what we do not love.
~ Stephen Jay Gould
For more information about 2010 as the International Year of Biodiversity, see the Convention on Biological Diversity.
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