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Daily Archives: April 1, 2015

Results: Which wildlife issues top your list?

By Collin O’Mara

NWF CEO

 

Earlier this month, to celebrate National Wildlife Federation Membership Month, we asked supporters like you to vote for your top three wildlife issues.

Thousands of you responded, and we’re so grateful to be working side-by-side with such caring conservationists. Behind every great wildlife victory – from defending species from extinction to restoring waterways to protecting pristine habitat – is a caring supporter like you. Thank you.

Here are the results of the 2015 Membership Month Survey.

63%: Permanently protecting amazing wildlife habitat areas and wild lands especially in the 600 million acres of public lands in this country

52%: Stopping the destruction of crucial wildlife habitat from mining, agriculture and development

36%: Keeping our waters safe and healthy for wildlife like great blue heron, dolphin and orcas

33%: Helping endangered species like the red wolf, Hawaiian monk seal and manatee recover from the brink of extinction

32%: Combating runaway carbon pollution and other emissions that fuel climate change and harm wildlife

20%: Saving native grassland habitat and the milkweed that grows there for pollinators like monarch butterflies

19%: Restoring coastal water habitat for fragile wildlife like sea turtles, songbirds and horseshoe crabs

19%: Creating safe habitat havens so neighborhood wildlife from backyard birds to native bees can thrive in and around our cities and suburbs

15%: Restoring magnificent species like the American bison and bighorn sheep back to their native habitat

12%: Ensuring every child in our country has the opportunity to get outside and experience all of America’s wild places

These Are a Few of Our Favorite Comments

For this Membership Survey, you did more than vote. You shared your commitment to wildlife and the natural world through inspiring comments, like these:

“I want the wilderness, our waterways and the sea to remain clean & safe for all the birds, fish and wildlife.”

“My childhood memories of playing in the woods inspire me to speak out. All children should experience the joy of floating a leaf down a fresh water woodland stream and hearing tree frogs chirping the arrival of spring.”

“I care about everything that makes up nature and the wild; from the tiniest bug to the largest mammal, from the tiniest seedling to the largest tree.”

“To me it’s all important. I love being able to walk away from the noise and pollution of the city into a pristine wilderness whether desert, forest, mountain or beach.”

“Restore and protect our native ecosystems and wildlife! I am in the process of planting my whole yard with native plants. I spread the word when I can on the importance of planting native. Wildlife is dependent on it.”

“We need the beauty and the awe of wildlife and wild places in our lives to be the best human beings.”

It is clear that folks across the nation love supporting wildlife conservation. Thank you all for the thousands of responses; I commit to you that we will work hard every day to advocate for wildlife protection and speak for wildlife that can’t speak for themselves.

Again, thank you.

Learn more about wildlife and the natural world at our Protecting Wildlife Insiders Call on April 12th with NWF’s top scientist and celebrity naturalist.

Don’t let ticks take a bite out of your turkey hunting

 

By Bill Miller

From the OutdoorHub

 

I don’t remember it being this way in my carefree days of youth, but ticks have become a turkey hunting fact of life. As you read this, chances are good somewhere there’s a tick crawling up the leg of some unsuspecting turkey hunter sitting in the woods. In any pursuit that involves hiking through the woods or even the grasslands, there are ticks out there waiting to suck your blood. Losing a few corpuscles won’t harm you that much, but some ticks may leave you with a longer-lasting parting gift.

The list of tick-borne diseases just keeps growing. Take it from someone who spent five days in the hospital and two additional weeks of intravenous antibiotics following a tick bite incurred while turkey hunting—and they never did figure out what I had!

After that experience, I’ve become somewhat of a fanatic about avoiding tick bites. Here are some of the tips I’ve picked up in recent seasons.

While traditional DEET repellants may help deter ticks, products containing the chemical permethrin are a more secure choice and the treatment lasts longer.

Warning! Permethrin repellants are not meant for direct application to human skin! These should be applied only to clothing with a brief drying period before putting those garments on. Keep it to the outer layers. Heavy up on your socks, pants cuffs and shirt sleeves—the places where ticks are mostly likely to begin their crawl.

In addition to using both DEET and permethrin repellents, the surest system incorporates physical barriers to ticks—especially the right clothing. Turkey hunters in particular are wont to just sit down about anywhere, and that’s when ticks invade. Successful turkey hunting requires absolute stillness, so even when you see or feel ticks crawling on you, you can’t do anything about it. So the best thing to do is keep them from access to your skin in the first place.

Any fine-mesh bug suit works well, and they are made large enough to slip over any clothes you want to wear underneath. Look for a suit with a head net built right into the hood; the fewer openings, the less chances there are for bugs to find their way inside. Elastic cuffs are good, but when the bugs are especially bad, it’s a good idea to secure cuffs at the wrists and the ankles with duct tape. Don’t worry; there aren’t any fashion contests out in the turkey woods!

The next generation in tick deterring clothing is ElimiTick from Gamehide. They have developed a process that bonds repellent (a man-made version of the natural repellant found in chrysanthemum flowers) to fabric fibers. The active ingredient is so tightly bonded, repellency effectiveness is retained throughout the expected life of the garment—that’s through at least 70 washings. The repellent in ElimiTick is odorless and invisible. It is the first ever US EPA-registered insect-repellent clothing. Insect Shield repellent products have been rated category IV, which is the most favorable rating. It’s been deemed appropriate for use by infants and children of all ages.

Team up multiple repellents, a head net, an ElimiTick suit, and a roll of duck tape, and you’ve crafted a nearly impenetrable suit of armor against ticks. But don’t forget the vigilance. A nightly tick-check back in camp is a smart idea anyway—just to be sure. I even make these inspections during cold weather seasons if I’ve been in contact with game animals. Some ticks spend most of the winter riding around on a well-furred host. When you stop the blood flow in that game animal and grab hold for some grip and grin pictures, that’s just when that tick is looking for a new home—you!