Aldo Leopold

The Internalization of a Land Ethic: A Visit to Coon Valley, Wisconsin

US Highway 14 drops into the town of Coon Valley after passing through Viroqua and Westby in the scenic landscape of the Driftless Area, a unique pocket of American geology, 85% of which is in western Wisconsin. The repeated pulses
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A Morning at the University of Wisconsin Arboretum in Madison

“I have to go there!” I wrote in the margin beside this sentence written by Aldo Leopold in 1934: “If civilization consists of cooperation with plants, animals, soil, and men, then a university which attempts to define that cooperation must
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Another Spring on the Ukrainian Steppe

April 2017. Six years ago, in March 2011, I was in eastern Ukraine, near the western edge of the Eurasian steppe ecoregion that sprawls across the continent from Mongolia to the Danube. These grasslands were the habitat for our hunter
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The View from Chikala Hill: Birds, Butterflies, and People in Southern Malawi

July 2016. I was back in southern Malawi as team leader for a small, biodiversity-related component of the Shire River Basin Management Program, a large project funded by the World Bank and implemented by the Government of Malawi’s Ministry of
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Morning Visit with Aldo Leopold at the Shack

In his essay “The Round River,” Aldo Leopold wrote: “The last word in ignorance is the man who says of an animal or plant, ‘What good is it?’ If the land mechanism as a whole is good, then every part
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Laudato Si’: The Pope’s Encyclical on Care for Our Common Home

September 2015. Pope Francis’s visit to Washington, DC, this week motivated me to speed up my reading of his lengthy and weighty encyclical on climate change, ecology, and humans and nature, “Laudato Si’: On Care for our Common Home.” The document
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