Land Trust News

Kelly Kountz Photo / Courtesy of Gallatin Valley Land Trust

Doug Chadwick Views Nature as a Cautious But “Willful Optimist”

      Wildlife biologist, author, photographer, conservationist, Montanan, writer, and Vital Ground Foundation board member Douglas Chadwick’s webinar on Dec. 7 (organized by Vital Ground) touched on many subjects, and while some of them were fairly grim he remains optimistic about the Rocky Mountain west and our ability to interact with nature in positive ways.

     Even as the earth’s temperatures climb, wildlife populations drop to dangerous low numbers and species are imperiled, and the world’s population continues to increase, he has hope for his home range in western Montana.

     “This is a can-do deal,” he said at one point, meaning generally wildlife and land conservation in the Yellowstone to the Yukon area. “This is a being-done deal.” 

     Doug said he was encouraged by the actions of Vital Ground and other conservation groups that are working to conserve wildlife habitat and strategically conserving key wildlife corridors or connectivity areas necessary to retain genetically healthy populations. For example, in response to a question, he suggested no specific individual population of grizzly bears in Montana should be removed from the Endangered Species List until all grizzly bears in all the areas are connected through habitat and corridors that allow connectivity. 

     Vital Ground recorded the webinar which is available on YouTube.