Bufflehead. Photo: Pam Polcyn
As the number of COVID-19 cases grows around the world, we see a powerful illustration of the inextricable link between human health, the environment, and each other. We are being asked as societies to self-quarantine, limit contact with others, and emulate social responsibility on behalf of our communities. As we necessitate requirements for public health such as hand washing, social distancing, staying home if we are sick, it is equally important to advocate for communities and individuals who are most vulnerable. We are only as safe as those most at risk. And our communities include the non-human animals and plants that are part of our daily lives. Watching the golden-crowned sparrows return north is an opportunity to be outside while social distancing (or watching through windows) and getting a much needed break from the news. Hearing the song of thrushes along the creek near my house reminds me that seasons change even while we struggle to understand the future. We are in this together. Read more.