Thursday, October 1, 2009
Home construction encroachment into wildlife habitats displaces animals and puts people and pets in danger.
Transcript of personal comment from this episode of The Web-DVM:
My personal comment tonight has to do with the abduction of Jessica Simpson's dog by a coyote, an occurrence that is becoming increasingly common in California. In addition to California, we are seeing attacks by wild predators to pets and small children in residential neighborhoods all over the country. Here in my home state of Florida, we regularly hear of attacks from bobcats, wild boars, alligators, and black bears.
Of course when this occurs to a beloved pet or child, our first natural reaction is severe anger and even violence toward the animal that perpetrated an attack. However, when one really thinks about it, is neither rational nor reasonable to blame wild animals for what they instinctively do: seek out prey in order to feed themselves and their young.
As we humans continue to expand into their natural habitats as we extend our settlements building ever further into their hunting territories, we risk paying the consequences.
To continue to build into the natural habitats of our wildlife, however, we do more than just place our pets and children in danger, we displace thousands of wild animals who are often killed as they encroach into what was once their hunting grounds.
To indiscriminately build residential neighborhoods in old forests and/or ever closer to wildlife preserves, places the future human inhabitants and their pets in danger, but also tragically displaces thousands of wildlife species, many of which are not even predators that are dangerous to man or pet.
So we should not aim our vitriol toward the coyotes, bobcats, black bears, or wild boars when these incidents occur. We should instead advocate for common sense home building that provides the housing needs of a growing population, while remaining sensitive to avoiding wildlife rich woods and forests.
Why anyone is building new homes right now is beyond me anyway. With a foreclosure market that has rendered our homes virtually worthless, what is the economical sense in BUlLDING MORE HOMES? Yet it is happening right here in my local jurisdiction with prominent developers currently making a pitch to our town council to build more houses in an area rich in wildlife preserves - a beautiful treasure which brought many of us here in the first place and want to keep it that way!
A little common sense for our safety and regard for our nation's wildlife treasures can go a long way. Stay involved and informed with your local government, and make your voice heard when they choose to build irresponsibly close to or within wildlife areas.