Yellowstone Buffalo: Don’t Worry, If You Visit, You’ll See Plenty of ’em

baby bison

It wasn’t enough to see bison, we wanted to see them doing something. They delivered. Over six days in the park my husband David and I got to see bison nursing calves, herds blocking the road, bulls ramming each other, using their horns and mouth to strip bark off trees and tons of grazing or napping

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Will Asking People To Text for Dolphins Work Post-Haiti?

Last night dolphins near Taijii, Japan, were oblivious to the break The Cove won an Oscar. The film’s hero, former Flipper trainer Ric O’Barry, has been trying to show Taijii’s dolphin slaughter to the world for years, even if it meant walking around with a TV on his chest. So, it’s no surprise he’d use the stage for the dolphins. O’Barry unfurled a banner saying “TEXT DOLPHIN TO 44144”.

What was the reaction? Twitter immediately ricocheted the message around thousands of time–and it’s still bouncing. This USAToday blogger says the sign–and its inherent naughtiness–got him to look up the film. But over at the Huffington Post, they ran a story explaining “What Happens if You Follow Ric Barry’s Sign?” The answer: you’re signed up for text message updates, up to 30 a month. Call me old-fashioned, but I subscribe to his blog, so that’s about 30 more than I need.

The Haiti earthquake taught the public that the easiest way you can donate money to a cause is by texting a charity. I doubt that causes can ask you to just text them anymore without people worrying how much it will cost. The various charities send you back a confirmation before your cellphone carrier sends off your money, Charity Navigator explains. If you haven’t done it, you won’t know that.

O’Barry wants you to write a letter to Obama. Taiji was, predictably, annoyed at the win. Controversy is swirling, the LA Times says. But what else does controversy

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Q & A With Endangered Species Artists

Lots of environmental causes give gifts when you make a donation. But how many eco totes do you really need? A couple of clever Chicago artists, Jenny Kendler, and Molly Schafer, have devised a new way to help the environment: the Endangered Species Print Project. They create a limited edition art print of a criticially endangered species. You buy it for $50. They give all the money to an organization that protects the species you’ll see on your wall.  The organizations they’re helping are so tiny (like the populations they serve) that they don’t have the slick fund-raising apparatus that supplies thank you gifts. So Kendler and Schafer effectively stepped in and offered the groups both publicity and donations–plus charming portraits of their animals. Here’s how they describe it:

The Endangered Species Print Project offers limited-edition art prints of critically endangered species. The number of prints available corresponds with the remaining animal or plant populations. For example, only 45 Amur Leopards remain in the wild, so for this edition, only 45 prints will ever be made. A different organization, whose mission is to the ensure the survival of the species depicted, is chosen for each print. 100% of the sales of ESPP prints are donated to these conservation organizations. You can check out the ESPP site at, and don’t forget to peep our blog, which is full of amazing endangered species facts and news. ESPP is an art project and labor of love is run by myself,

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Idaho Wolf Activist Cleverly Undermining Wolf Hunting Quota

A Wolf SmilesCourtesy of SigmaEye

Wolf advocate Lynne Stone tried to find a way to get Idaho Fish and Game to count the wolves they shoot for killing livestock towards the hunting total. She knew where officials shot down the alpha female of the Basin Butte pack in November. So she bought a hunting tag ($11) and claimed it has her own, the Times-News of Magic Valley says, hoping it would count towards the region’s total.

One more wolf claimed for the hunting total means one less wolf cold be legally shot. Not so fast, Fish and Game said. They confiscated the wolf and gave Stone a warning. Because hunters enjoy a great deal of legal protection, they had to sell her another tag. (She had asked permission beforehand to use the tag like that and only got unclear answers.)

Stone heads the Boulder White Clouds Council, which wants permanent protection for the area, so she obviously isn’t going to go hunting for real. Stone is so well known in the area and the frequent subject of harassment from anti-wolf activists. Isn’t it derogatory to call them anti-wolf? No, amazingly, that’s what they call themselves. And they vow to eradicate the “Canadian gray wolf” like it was some illegal immigrant taking jobs away from American wolves.

Idaho hunters are about two-thirds of the way to bagging this year’s quota of 220 wolves. The Sawtooth region where this wolf lived has a hunting quota of 55, with 30 already dead and

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The Cove: By Seeing the Movie, You’re Participating in the Effort

The Cove is a movie about dolphin slaughter in Japan, but the filmmakers have the sense to know that an hour of dolphins being harpooned, flailing and bleeding to death would be unwatchable. Instead they tell the fascinating, adventure story of trying to get footage of a slaughter of dolphins that Taiji, Japan tries desperately to keep secret.

Spoiler alert: they get the footage. And here’s where the audience feels like they’re participating. The point of the effort is to get the word (and video) out on how horrific and unnecessary the process of killing 23,000 dolphins a year is. It’s an act of faith by the filmmakers that once the world knows this will have to stop. And just by witnessing The Cove, you fee like you’re part of their journey.

They also list things you can do to help. You can write President Obama and the Japanese. You can donate. You can carefully choose your seafood–for your own health and for the fish’s sake.

One of the actions they suggest is that you pledge not to go see dolphins in captivity. (The sale of show dolphins supports dolphin slaughter.)

Here are some places you can go see dolphins in the wild instead.

To see more animals go to