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Strangers in Town

How the arrival of beavers divided the small California city of Martinez

Heidi Perryman did not set out to change the fortunes of California’s beavers. When, back in 2007, the first pair began building in Alhambra Creek, she was simply delighted by the novelty. “They were adorable,” she told me, before revising her opinion.…
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by: Ben Goldfarb – July 13, 2018

Cross-Country Cougar

Heart of a Lion: A Lone Cat’s Walk Across America
By William Stolzenburg
Bloomsbury, 2016, 256 pages

The last decade has brought some thrilling news for North America’s large carnivores. Grizzly bears are venturing from their Northern Rockies refugia and reclaiming prairies; wolfpacks are howling across the Northwest; coyotes have squeezed into niches from Cape Cod to Chicago. Yet dispersal remains perilous. In March 2016, OR-4, a lupine patriarch whose progeny have spread throughout Oregon, was gunned down from a helicopter after killing livestock. A month later, North Dakota’s…
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by: Ben Goldfarb – Autumn 2016

End of the Road

The US Forest Service is beginning to decommission some of its roads, opening the way for a wildlife comeback

On a crisp afternoon last October, beneath a canopy of larch, lodgepole, and red cedar, Pete Leusch led me up a trail in the heart of the Yaak Valley, the densely forested corner of northwest Montana that remains one of the wildest…
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by: Ben Goldfarb – September 11, 2014

Home on the Range

On the Alberta Prairie, Ranchers Are Finding Ways to Coexist with the Grizzlies in their Midst

photo Chris Yauck PhotographyAlberta ranchers Tony Bruder and Dick Hardy In 1993, Jeff Bectell saw a grizzly bear – two, in fact – on his land for the first time in his life. It wouldn’t be the last. Bectell runs cattle in southwest Alberta, just a couple of miles from the US border. Beyond his window the crown of Chief Mountain, flat and square as a giant molar, reveals where Alberta ends…
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by: Ben Goldfarb – Spring 2014

On the Yukon River, a Troubling Salmon Decline

Overfishing, industrial bycatch, and climate change combine to reduce salmon numbers

Eagle, Alaska, is perched on a bend in the Yukon River, just eight miles west of the US-Canada border. What Eagle lacks in population – it claimed just 86 residents in the 2010 Census – it makes up in international fisheries importance.…
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by: Ben Goldfarb – September 23, 2013

The Catch 22 of New England Fisheries’ Catch Share Scheme

Declining fish stocks and industry consolidation threaten to price out small-scale fishermen

Given that commercial fishing is the most dangerous occupation in the United States, and very far from the most lucrative, it takes a special tenacity to stick with the profession. Doug Maxfield is one such fanatic. Born in Essex, MA, a town…
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by: Ben Goldfarb – April 1, 2013


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