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My essay on finding opportunity and humility in this winter’s irruption of Snowy Owls is today’s feature in Aeon Magazine. My colleague Kent McFarland photographed this owl on Killington Mountain here in Vermont.

  1. Dudley Carlson says:

    Sobering, and beautifully written. Thanks for stretching the view from the owl to its wider surroundings. I’d love to send this piece to Monsanto, ConAgra, and their kin. We all need to be thinking about the small things we do that compromise healthy habitat, and the small ways we can preserve and strengthen it. Plant butterfly weed; maintain wildlife corridors and fallow field corners; avoid using rodent-killing poisons. Read Bryan. Thank you for thoughtful writing, for good use of your craft, and for teaching all of us.

  2. Wonderful Essay Bryan. It would be great to move with a Ivory Gull or a Ross’s. It’s hard to believe how the climate change would affect all of the vegetation also.

    • Many thanks. Yes, I had seen that Ross’s Gull in Quebec in November and the Ivory Gull on Lake Champlain a few years ago. I’d much prefer to see them near the Arctic Circle!

  3. Mark Council says:

    Bryan, I’ve always admired your take on things and the seeming ease with which you write so eloquently about the world that moves you. This article absolutely blows me away. You, my friend, are an educator supreme. To experience nature through your heart and mind and eyes is a real gift, and I know I’m not alone in saying so.
    With untold numbers of planets out there, there must be one where all creatures live in harmony with one another, and no one ignorantly claims the top slot the way we do on this imperiled planet. If such a planet exists, and we should ever be allowed to be guests there, I’d send the Leopolds the Muirs and the Emerson’s and the Pfeiffers of this world as emissaries.
    Thank you for sharing your gifts with the world. I know mine is brighter for it-

    • Mark, you are much too kind. It’s an honor to share this world – all its faults and beauty – with you. I’m thoroughly enjoying your photography, which is of course another form of expressing life on Earth. Keep shooting!

  4. Emily Marie says:

    Compelling essay, Bryan. Thank you. After attending a lecture on the borders of the Arctic and then reading an article in the NYT, I’m wondering more and more about the newly open water trade routes in the Arctic and the effect these are having on not only the Snowy Owls but other arctic wildlife as well. And what that will look like in the future. I don’t have a question per se; just mind musings jiggled about some more after reading your writing.

    • Bryan says:

      Thanks, Emily. Yes, indeed, as the Arctic thaws we’ll no doubt see changes in patterns of of wildlife behavior. It’s so tough to study life up there, particularly life that moves so far. Consider Ivory Gulls — lots of worry, lots of odd movement. Oh, how I’d love to move with them.

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