Winter Bird Feeding Tips

Song trush

The winter can be a tough time of year for your garden birds. However, you can easily give your feathered friends a helping hand. Attracting birds to your garden will be more successful, if they have a place that makes them feel secure and comfortable even in the worst weather. Please check out the link below for some winter bird feeding tips and other useful information about how to help your garden birds.

Long-tailed tits

Winter Bird Feeding Tips

Large-billed Crow Project in South Korea

Large-billed crow

We would like to support Joey Rositano’s ‘Large-billed Crow Project’ in South Korea by sharing the link to the Kickstarter he is currently running for the digital version of his book ‘Scattering’.

‘Scattering’ is a limited edition photography book about crow feeding rituals on Jeju Island in South Korea. As part of their shamanic faith residents of Jeju Island leave portions of food for scavenging animals, especially crows. Over five years Joey Rositano documented the special relationship between people and large-billed crows in the village of Darakut in South Korea.

Kickstarter Book One – ‘Scattering’ by Joey Rositano

Joey Rositano is a photographer from Nashville, Tennessee. The last fifteen years he has mostly lived on Jeju Island in South Korea. He has written about shamanism on Jeju Island, published a previous photo book and worked on a number of other projects about the island.

Please check out Joey Rositano’s Kickstarter and share with anyone who might have interest.

Season’s Greetings

Peace and Compassion

As we gather with loved ones to celebrate this supposedly joyous season, let us reflect on the true spirit of Christmas as a time of peace, goodwill and compassion.

In a world marked by conflict, let this Christmas be a beacon of hope, inspiring us to condemn the scourge of war and violence that plagues our global community. May we, in the spirit of the season, strive for understanding, empathy and unity.

Let us extend our compassion not only to our fellow human beings but also to the countless sentient species that share this planet with us. All beings, regardless of their species, have intrinsic worth and deserve to be treated ethically.

May our hearts be open to the interconnectedness of all life, fostering a sense of stewardship and responsibility for the well-being of all sentient beings and for the fragile home we share – planet Earth.

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Cats, Cars And Wildlife (Republished)

House cat
Editor’s note: This post has originally been posted on 29th May 2018, and has now been updated and republished.

What have cats, cars and wildlife in common? Cats are domesticated companion animals, cars are machines built by humans, and both are able to kill sentient beings when not supervised or controlled. Cars can kill cats and wildlife, and cats can kill wildlife too. Neither of both scenarios is ‘natural’, both are artificial and creations of humans. So what is the impact, and what can be done to keep both, our beloved companion cats and wildlife, safe?

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Why Fireworks Should Be Abolished (Republished)

Editor’s note: This post has originally been posted on 12th March 2022, and has now been updated and republished.

So called silent firework displays, which are in fact not silent at all, unless they are replaced by laser shows, are increasingly praised as the ultimate solution when it comes to addressing animal welfare concerns. At the first glance silent fireworks seem to be a logical solution, as reduced noise pollution is addressing one of the best known problems in this context. However, as it is commonly the case, there is the bigger picture to consider, and that is where the controversy starts, at least for people who feel very strongly that fireworks are part of their cherished traditions and well deserved rights, and of course for people, who have some sort of financial interest in the business of producing, selling or using fireworks.

Mallard family
Mallard family

Most people would agree that we should not do any intentional harm to other sentient beings, be it directly or indirectly. Fireworks have a proven negative impact onto our shared environment, and are therefore potentially harming other human and non-human animals, who are unlikely to have given consent to being harmed, neither in the short nor in the long term. This simply means that by using any type of firework, intentional harm is being done to others, which is ethically not justifiable. Therefore we could actually stop at this point, but for the sake of the argument, let us look a bit more in detail into the threats and problems caused by fireworks.

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Corvids – Killers or Scavengers?

Introduction

Are corvids cold blooded killers or merely opportunistic scavengers? This is the question we are trying to answer in this blog post. Mainstream media and advertising businesses often have a tendency to present an idyllic and idealised version of farming practices, showcasing for example animals living in picturesque environments. This imagery is employed to evoke positive emotions and create a connection with consumers. It is nothing else than a marketing strategy aimed at promoting the products derived from the use of non-human animals, such as meat or wool, by associating them with positive and wholesome images. Humans have a natural inclination to connect with and appreciate the beauty of animals. The sight of a playful and adorable lamb triggers positive emotions, such as joy and warmth, which does evoke empathy and a sense of compassion.

Spring lamb - Photo credits: FreeImages.com/takatuka
Photo credits: FreeImages.com/takatuka

Bearing this in mind, then it is not surprising that the sight of corvids scavenging on such an innocent being will without a doubt be repulsive for most people, who will immediately sympathise with the victim, and not with the scavenger. Unfortunately, media representations of such wildlife interactions with domesticated non-human animals are commonly very much one-sided, despite the well known fact that it is always essential to consider all nuances and complexities of such interactions.

Jackdaw Alyona
Jackdaw Alyona

Media portrayals often focus on dramatic or attention-grabbing stories, which can lead to an exaggerated or sensationalised narrative. While isolated instances of corvid predation on lambs occur, it is essential to keep in mind that wildlife predation is just one among many factors influencing lamb mortality. It is crucial to take scientific research in account, as we will do, when discussing these matters.

We will show the links between mainstream media, their owners and agricultural businesses, and we will demonstrate historical, cultural and psychological background information to explain why a picture of corvids as being coldblooded killers is being painted. We will look into the human psyche, but also at the reality of agricultural businesses.

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