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High Uintas Bookshelf

A High Uintas Bookshelf

In this column we’ll list 2-4 interesting articles, books or the like that have caught our attention. They aren’t necessarily recent or recently read-- sort of a random compilation. Within a year, hopefully, we’ll have an established and detailed reading list. It won’t be complete without your additions. Please send suggestions and a descriptive sentence or two.

Cougar. The American Lion. Kevin Hansen. Northland Publishing. 1992.
While this book lacks the personal grittiness of Harley Shaw’s Soul Among Lions, it stands as both a fine scientific and technical review of cougar natural history as well as the aesthetic and intrinsic values of the wild North American lion. One read of this book-- it is worth many reads--and it becomes clear that Utah cougar are managed by amateurs in the Division of Wildlife Resources. The fear that so many have of cougar is misplaced and represents a broader fear of wildness.

Flammulated, Boreal and Great Gary Owls in the United States: A Technical Conservation Assessment. US Forest Service General Technical Report RM-253, Rocky Mountain Forest and Ranger Experiment Station, Ft. Collins, CO.
The title says it all, but it is by no means a dry report. It represents a fine compilation of research and literature reviews of three of North America’s most unique species of owls, all found in the Uintas, but for many years believed not to be present! Each owl requires a different set of landtypes, largely untouched wild stands of forest.

"None So Blind: The Problem of Ecological Denial." David Orr, Conservation Biology, Oct. 1995.
The article starts with this profound sentence and goes on, "Willful blindness has reached epidemic proportions in our time." This article will start you on a reflective and introspective review.

"Slow Knowledge." David Orr, Conservation Biology, June 1996.
Comparing fast knowledge, technical fixes, and often a lack of context, to the assumptions of slow knowledge, wisdom and context, Orr again challenges the foundations of so many ecological problems we face today. This is a detailed and fine essay.

"Terminals of Seduction." Gary Nabhan. Wild Earth, Fall 1998.
It is great to have cool ecosystem/ landscape models, geographic information systems (GIS), global positioning systems (GPS) and a host of technological gimmicks to talk about landscapes. But if they are connected to managers, environmentalists, the academy and not the real, on-the-ground places, they aren’t much more than magic tricks and seduce us, ironically, into fast and false knowledge.

Dick Carter

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