2017-04-22 / Outdoors

Wolf Tracks

Outdoor Columnist
Dave Wolf

Now that fishing season has kicked into gear, it is the spring gobbler opener on April 29 that becomes the talk of the town, fields, and woodlands. There appear to be plenty of toms out there, strutting and fanning their tails in hopes of impressing the girls.

There’s another significant Saturday sandwiched between the trout and spring gobbler openers – Earth Day, which arrives on April 22.

You’ve seen the changes in our environment, almost all of which are for the worst. Wildlife habitat, including wetlands, has disappeared. We’ve fragmented the complex, interconnected ecosystems with housing developments, roads and other land disturbances.

The first “Earth Day” was held on April 22, 1970, centered in the United States. The entire world now observes it in a show of support for environmental protection. There are now 193 countries coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network.


A gobbler struts his stuff as the opening of the April 29 spring gobbler season draws closer. Today (April 22) is Earth Day, a time to dedicate oneself to environmental stewardship so future generations can enjoy the same outdoor pursuits we have available today. 
Karen Wolf photo A gobbler struts his stuff as the opening of the April 29 spring gobbler season draws closer. Today (April 22) is Earth Day, a time to dedicate oneself to environmental stewardship so future generations can enjoy the same outdoor pursuits we have available today. Karen Wolf photo Numerous communities and many schools all over the United States celebrate Earth Week and/or Earth Day. This year, a high-profile March for Science will occur on Earth Day.

Last year, the landmark Paris Climate Change Agreement was signed on Earth Day by the United States, China, and 120 other countries. Will we keep our promise? Only time will tell.

Public opinion polls consistently show that Americans support environmental regulations. A majority say they’re even willing to pay more for goods and services if they are more environmentally friendly.

We, the people, have been given this earth, and that carries a responsibility of taking care of it. Everyone can do something, even if it is just picking up litter along our highways and outdoor trails.

Political activism is another option. Government regulations may be all that stand between a citizenry that depends on clean air, clean water and an inhabitable earth, and those who would plunder our planet for profit.

Many of us sit on the couch and root for our favorite sports team or plug into the entertainment of the moment. However, when it comes to conserving our natural resources, sitting on the bench will not cut it.

We all need to be part of the team. It will take many people working together to get the job done. You won’t get a standing ovation. No one will hand you a trophy on which your name is inscribed. However, you will have accomplished something of worth.

The next time you see a trout rise from the depths of a clean water stream, a turkey strutting in a field, or ducks circling and then stretching their webbed feet for a landing, think of what future generations could be missing of we do not remain vigilant today.

(Dave Wolf may be reached by email at wolfang418@msn.com.)

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