[NAFEX] Fruit>squirrels>cats> bird predation

Michael Nave jmichaelnave at yahoo.com
Sun Feb 18 16:16:50 EST 2007

Donna, I can't disagree with anything you said. The
big problem I see in the US though is that despite
repeated assurances from politicians of all stripes
that they care about the environment, they know
nothing about the environment and in reality don't
care. Their opinions are formed by the money of big
agriculture. Which means that these things are not
taught in government run schools. 

In the schools everyone knows that the most important
thing this time of year is the Grammy awards, not the
cycle of nature. After all, Britney may be pregnant
again and Beyonce may have a new boyfriend. That's
what's really important. Loss of genetic diversity,
pesticide poisoning, extensive urban and ag
monocultures, reckless GM breeding and uncontrolled
irradiation of food are not topics for discussion or

I have a one acre lot in a neighborhood of one acre
lots. On my property I have voles, snakes, tree frogs,
toads, earthworms, slugs, snails, praying mantis,
interesting spiders, jerusalem crickets, possums, and
skunks. The properties on either side of me have no
voles, no snakes, no frogs, no toads, no spiders,
usually no insects of any kind, etc but they do have
beautifully manicured two inch lawns (which I do not

--- Hans Brinkmann <hans-brinkmann at t-online.de> wrote:

> Hallo Donna,
> because I expected many positive answers to your
> excellent comment, I am 
> a little bit disappointed.
> Each of your sentence is right, true and very
> positive!
> I think we all have our responsibility for all the
> things we do (and 
> failing to do) and especially fruit-growers
> have many chances to take this responsibility, to
> improve situations and 
> to do simultaneously education for children,
> neighbors and other people. They are able to put the
> focus to small - 
> usual not visible - things, tastes, relations
> between and pleasures.
> ciao
> Hans
> Donna &/or Kieran schrieb:
> > Cats may take their toll, but the humans are doing
> more than their fair 
> > share.   What's really reduced the quail
> population in Tennessee is fescue, 
> > they say that it's so thick that baby quail can't
> move around in it.  The 
> > other thing, that really gets me, is the damned
> weedeaters.  People move out 
> > in the country and try to make their entire yard
> look like a carpet, 
> > including cutting all grass and weeds right up to
> the road.  They have nice 
> > smooth expanses which would be convenient for
> watching wildlife, if only 
> > there were any wildlife left to watch.  Sure, deer
> and rabbits eat grass, 
> > but quail need bugs and weed/grass SEEDS, which
> aren't produced when 
> > everything is kept 2" high.
> >     Another thing that gets me is the horse
> population.  Used to be that 
> > horse lovers would have one horse.  Now they have
> 4 of them, in the same 
> > space.   The horses not only eat everything down
> to the ground, but they are 
> > dependent on lots of hay and grain.  I hardly ever
> see anyone actually ride 
> > one of the creatures.
> >     If you stop and think about it, most NAFEXers
> increase species 
> > diversity.  Certainly compared to the average
> American lawn, we create more 
> > green stuff at different heights, creating both
> cover and food.  At our 
> > place, the soil was so terrible in the cleared
> area that few species of 
> > weeds would grow.  Now the soil is better over an
> acre or so, and we have 
> > provided a great deal of food to the voles, flying
> squirrels( they like 
> > tomatoes), chicken snakes (they like eggs) hawks
> and owls (they like 
> > chickens), cardinals (they like chicken feed, and
> peas pecked fresh from the 
> > pods) and a multitude of birds that like
> blueberries.  A bit of controlled 
> > predation is not a bad thing, especially as so
> many wild predators are gone. 
> > The real enemy for birds is loss of  food and
> habitat.  I remember someone 
> > years ago commenting that after bug zappers became
> a fad, they heard and saw 
> > far fewer birds.    Donna 
> >
> > _______________________________________________

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