‘I mean I don’t know where all this is going, but I can’t believe we’re letting the fabric of the natural world unravel without more of a hullabaloo about it because it’s essentially our greater selves.’ — Doug Chadwick
Sarah Aronson: What do you call it, you say every naturalist is . . .
Doug Chadwick: A stunted 11 year-old. They’re an 11 year-old who saw a rock and just has to go turn it over and go “Ooooo wow. What’s that?!” And they don’t change.
There’s a lot of wonder in that.
Well look, the earth offers an infinite supply of it [wonder] and I’ve never figured out how anybody can be bored. And people say, “Well, but I’m not into that nature stuff,” and that confuses me too because, look, there are 10 trillion cells in our body—human cells. There are more microbial cells than that in our body and they consist of thousands of species of yeast and bacteria and archaea, another microbe group, and there’s more microbial DNA is us than there is human DNA, so whenever someone says, “Well you know I’m just not into that nature stuff,” I go, “But nature’s totally into you!”
Wildlife biologist and local author Doug Chadwick will speak of his experiences exploring ecosystems from Siberia to the Congo, and Canada to Northwest Montana at the Museum at Central School, 124 Second Avenue East in Kalispell, on Sunday, Feb. 22, starting at 2:30 p.m. Chadwick received a master’s in wildlife biology from the University of Montana. He is the author of 11 books and produced hundreds of articles for publications for National Geographic, Reader’s Digest and the New York Times Review of Books. Tickets are $9 available at the museum or at the door. For more information, call 756-8381.
North Forker Doug Chadwick has an excellent article on the National Geographic web site discussing Sen. Max Baucus’ decades-long efforts to protect the North Fork Flathead watershed and the reasons behind this work . . .
Daybreak on August 8 found me on a bank of the North Fork of the Flathead River in northwestern Montana, among the mixed tracks of deer, otters, and grizzly bears, marveling, as I have a thousand times before, at the near-magical transparency of these waters.
The bottom stones stood out as if on display under glass. Decades ago, my wife and I built a cabin nearby.
Across the river on the east bank, in Glacier National Park, the campers were stirring in their tents and the first cars were snaking up the Going to the Sun Road. But I was headed west that day, into the Whitefish Range, to see a man about the future of this valley.
Last month, the inimitable Doug Chadwick gave an interview on Wolverines to Jessica Knoblauch, content producer at Earthjustice. As always with Doug Chadwick, it was interesting stuff. The conversation is available as a podcast or in transcript. Here’s the lead-in and link to the interview . . .
Doug Chadwick is a wildlife biologist and journalist for National Geographic. As a volunteer for the Glacier National Park Wolverine Project, Doug helped researchers track wolverines, fierce members of the weasel family who regularly face down grizzly bears and eat entire bones for dinner. Despite their ferocity, both climate change and trapping threaten the wolverines’ existence.
While we’re on the subject of Wolverines, here’s a nice review of local author Doug Chadwick’s recent (May, 2010) book, The Wolverine Way . . .
“Wolverines belong to the carnivore family Mustelidae, more commonly called the weasel family after its most familiar members. From a public relations standpoint, this is a bit unfortunate, considering how corporate shills, spammers, faithless lovers and hedge fund managers keep giving weasels a bad name.”
That quotation is from “The Wolverine Way” by Doug Chadwick, a surprisingly funny yet keenly informative book about Glacier National Park’s mysterious wolverine population.
“I’m a biologist. It’s been really hard for me to get it through my thick head that people aren’t as interested in all those geeky facts,” Chadwick said from his rural Whitefish home last week. “Wolverines are fun and exciting. If I don’t get that across, I’m not conveying the real information about the animal. I’m a superfan.”
Here’s another article on the wolverine study in Glacier National Park. This one, from the Hungry Horse News, is based on an interview with Doug Chadwick — reasonable enough, since he has published a book on wolverines . . .
A creature long-maligned is finally getting some positive attention. The wolverine, one of Glacier National Park’s most rugged animals, is the subject of an ongoing study by biologists to learn more about the mysterious animal.
“We’re trying to get out there an learn everything we can,” said volunteer and local author Doug Chadwick. “The single most concentrated, vigorous population we know of in the Lower 48 is in Glacier National Park and we’re only talking about 40 to 45 animals.”
This very interesting article about wolverine studies in Glacier National Park appeared in today’s Missoulian. Study volunteers Doug Chadwick, Karen Reeves, Stuart Reiswig and Flannery Coats all get a mention . . .
The carnivore’s eyes glow like orbs in the winter darkness, the front quarter of a deer clenched in its vice-like jaws.
As the fur-covered critter wrests the carrion from a steel bolt on a bait post, it leaves behind a token that will be treasured by researchers studying the animal – a lock of wolverine fur.
The remarkable scene was captured last month by remote camera at a backcountry site in Glacier National Park, where carnivore ecologist John Waller has been conducting an unprecedented study to determine the size of the park’s wolverine population.