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The Importance of Paying Attention - With Harry Fuller

Why National Wildlife Refuges Are So Important

Birding guide Harry Fuller describes why national wildlife refuges and observing wildlife there (like this Northern Rough-winged Swallow) are so important. “It’s survival; it’s food; it’s energy; it’s family; it’s the youngsters; it’s the other animals around; it’s observing what’s going on because you’re either looking for food or you don’t want to be food… The awareness of these creatures is just way beyond what most people can ever really experience if they don’t pay attention to other forms of life. I spent most of my life working for big companies, and money was really the only measurement that mattered. In nature, money is completely unimportant.”

Full Transcript

Transcript: 

BirdNote®

The Importance of Paying Attention
Malheur National Wildlife Refuge
Featuring Harry Fuller

Interviewed by Chris Peterson

This is BirdNote.
[The spring songs and calls of Marsh Wren, Common Yellowthroat, Virginia Rail, Yellow-headed Blackbird, Franklin’s Gulls, American Bittern, and Northern Rough-winged Swallows and more at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge]
In spring and fall, our nation’s wildlife refuges teem with birds. At Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in southeast Oregon, birding guide Harry Fuller describes why these refuges – and observing wildlife there – are so important.
“Well there’s everything from just the raw beauty of it, which is wonderful and that’s sort of the romantic side, but it’s also humbling and instructive to see all these lives, many of them quite complicated even by our human standards, being lived with such intensity and such speed and such importance to the individual birds and other animals – completely oblivious of what we’re doing…
[Selection of bird sounds from Malheur 187,000-acre wetland]
…and to have things that are going on that are really really important that have nothing to do with being measured by money or time or efficiency or profit…is so enriching because I spent most of my life working for big companies and money was really the only measurement that mattered. And in nature, money is completely unimportant.
 [Coyotes in the wetland]
It’s survival; it’s food; it’s energy; it’s family; it’s the youngsters; it’s the other animals around; it’s observing what’s going on because you’re either looking for food or you don’t want to be food…And so the awareness of these creatures is just way beyond what most Americans and most people can ever really experience if they don’t pay attention to other forms of life.”
You can see a feature about the birds and the people of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge at birdnote.org.
                                                                       ###
Bird sounds recorded by C. Peterson on site at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, spring 2012.
BirdNote's theme music was composed and played by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler.
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Chris Peterson
© 2014 Tune In to Nature.org     May 2014    Narrator: Mary McCann

ID#  nwr-malheur-01-2012-08-29 nwr-malheur-01b

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