“It’s natural to have an emotional reaction and root for the moose, but it’s also a great example of the dangers of anthropomorphizing wildlife. The Huffington Post language describes “sly wolves” attacking a “brave mother” who puts up a "heroic" fight against wolves trying to “kill her baby.” How could you watch this video after reading that description and not view the wolves negatively?
But it’s this exact kind of anthropomorphizing that was a big part of historical (and current!) anti-predator campaigns that led to the near-eradication of wolves in the lower 48 states (not to mention cougars, raptors, bears, etc.). We need to view such scenes through a scientific, ecological point of view, not from a subjective, emotional, anthropomorphic one.
Judging by the comments here on HuffPost (I can’t even bear to look at the YouTube comments) it’s clear that we as a society are just as guilty of this now as we were 100 years ago.”
“So, yes, I maaaaaybe I almost accidentally killed Conan.
The idea behind this was to have Conan ride this domestic water buffalo (which is a working animal, and routinely ridden) to give me an entre to talk about how these animals are so important to the cultures of Southeast Asia, which depend on them as a mode of transportation, beasts of burden, for agriculture (plowing fields), for milk, meat and leather.
But when you work with animals - even domesticated species and animals that are trained for certain behaviors -- there's always an element of unpredictability. Thankfully, both Conan and the buffalo were ok. And now you all can laugh at this blooper!
“I am not laughing, I thought the whole idea of bringing animals onto television sets is foolish, cruel and dangerous. We can educate people without putting them or the animals at risk. A water buffalo, even a domesticated one is a dangerous animal that weights between 1500 to 2500 lbs. I am a fan of NWF and am saddened that this show took place with their name attached to it. I work at an exotic cat sanctuary where we care for abused, neglected and abandoned animals from people who thought they would make good pets. Seeing people handling wild animals on TV shows gives the perception that they are safe and perhaps cool to own. I would hardly call this a blooper.”
Dec 24, 2013 at 00:05:39
“So glad to see Elfquest mentioned here. Nightfall and Redlance are the most obvious example, but the Pini's whole universe is set up to skew along much less rigidly defined gender roles than the real one. It's pretty awesome. (And I'd be a bad fan not to point out that there's a new Elfquest story kicking off from Dark Horse Comics in Jan at http://bit.ly/HBJZek.)”
“Huffington Post is an incredibly diverse website. There's certainly a lot of hard hitting news here, but there's a lot more too. And I will confess to a bigger strategy with these light-hearted kinds of stories. Stories and even more-so images like these help people create an emotional connection to wildlife (just read the other comments here). If I can do that, it makes my job of getting people interested in protecting wildlife much easier.”
“This isn't supposed to be a serious post. My posts are themed around "animal oddities" and you have to agree that this owl ending up so perfectly posed next to the fake ones is a pretty odd occurrence, even more-so because it stayed there long enough to be photographed.”
The Pill on Apr 25, 2012 at 17:16:14
“It just seemed like something my Grandma would post on her facebook wall, not the hard hitting, cutting edge, uber-relevant news story that typifies the content of the Huffington Post...”
“While your point is well taken that just because an animal with genes from a western population shows up in the East doesn't mean that it walked there on its own, in this case biologists were tracking this particular animal as it moved from SD across the upper Midwest and into the Northeast.”
“Sarah, it's possible (and more likely) that you saw a bobcat, which are still found in CT. While I'm sure the South Dakota cougar isn't the only one to migrate east from an established western population, it's still probably an extremely rare occurance. Here's more info on bobcats in CT: http://www.ct.gov/dep/cwp/view.asp?a=2723&q=325974&depNav_GID=1655”
“Just because other countries did shocking things too doesn't mean what the Russians did was any less shocking.”
coreten on Jun 16, 2011 at 14:57:01
“I guess humans have been involved in and conducted shocking things from the day one. So, I suppose it comes down to shocking for whom and that depends on which side of the table one is. I don't believe it was shocking at all to the perpetrators.”
“One of my goals with my blogs is to introduce this exact idea, that animals have abilities and intelligence that are more "advanced" than most people ever consider. In reality, it's not odd at all, just a normal part of nature. It's only odd for people that assume all animals are dumber and inferior to humans (which is, sadly, most people).”
Deep Thinking Man on Jun 16, 2011 at 15:52:48
if humans were to watch animals very closely; they'd learn how to deal personal things in their lives, and everything else they deem neccessary, as well as Nature...yet,i also think that most humans aren't open-minded enough to want to understand that their lives would be much simpler, and less stressful if they were to learn and use the lessons.”
“Thanks! I know it can be frustrating to think about all the problems wildlife face but it really is true that each of us can make a difference if we put our hearts and minds into it. Whether it's by making a donation to a conservation group, calling your elected officials, changing your purchasing or driving habits, or creating a wildlife garden, each action we take has positive effect. And when you do it and I do it and my neighbor does it, the collective effect can really result in change.”
“That's a cool one too, Tim. I only included species that I personally observed though, and I can't say I remember seeing any flightless cormorants, although my trip to Galapagos was almost 10 years ago so admittedly my memory might be faulty. Thanks for adding it to the list.”
“Thanks for catching that Gussie. It escaped me when I wrote the post and the editors didn't catch it before making it live. We appreciate it and offer apologies for our sloppiness. I've made the correction.”
PatA on Mar 20, 2011 at 18:56:43
“David, I lost your email address. Could you give it to me again and I'll immediately put it in my contact list. Thanks, Pat”
“This is great! Thanks for doing what you're doing to help out these amphibians. If you haven't already, you should submit your yard to National Wildlife Federation's Certified Wildlife Habitat program. Check out http://www.nwf.org/gardenforwildlife”