Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Sorry but no photos today. Blogger is experiencing technical problems and is refusing to upload pictures.

Some animal species are very successful provided that they remain within one type of habitat and/or have access to one particular type of food, but are not adaptable. A good example is the giant panda. Unfortunately, animals like these seem incapable of dealing with changes in habitat or climate and so they hover at the edge of extinction.

At the other end of the spectrum are animals that seem to have no difficulty adjusting to different environments and conditions. To me the best example in the USA is the coyote. In spite of having been ruthlessly persecuted for over a century, this resourceful creature seems to be prospering from coast to coast and border to border.

I started thinking about this when I returned from Phoenix and got back to watching the birds in our yards. Monday last week I was watching White-winged Doves, Northern Mockingbirds, House Sparrows and House Finches living happily in the Arizona desert and feeding on saguaro cactus blossoms. This Monday I was watching the same species looking equally happy as they visited the feeders in our suburban yard in sub-tropical southeast Texas. It is really incredible just how well these and some other bird species have adapted to different habitats.

Like many other people, I am extremely concerned about the effects of man-made pollution and climate change on our environment. My grandson is three. I fear that by the time he reaches middle age, a great many of the animals that we love to watch today will have become extinct, or will exist only in zoos. However, I am fairly confident that coyotes will still be thriving and that at least some of our bird species will be doing just fine, too.  

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