A determined dry-land wheat farmer and a visionary baker are trying to help a bird in trouble, the Sharp-tailed Grouse. The farmer, Wade Troutman, leaves 30% of the land he farms in its natural condition. The undisturbed patches of sagebrush habitat provide cover and food for grouse and their young. The baker, Jeff Weissman, owner of Great Harvest Bread in north Seattle, offers Wade's Wheat Bread in his bakery. "Community supported agriculture" projects help farmers such as Wade Troutman. You can probably find a group near you!
A Baker and Farmer Help Sharp-tailed Grouse
An Interview with Jeff Weissman
By Chris Peterson
This is BirdNote!
This is the story of a determined dry-land wheat farmer, a visionary baker, and a bird in trouble, the Sharp-tailed Grouse. The farmer, Wade Troutman, leaves 30% of the land he farms in its natural condition. The undisturbed patches of sagebrush habitat provide cover and food for grouse and their young.
[Call of the Sharp-tailed Grouse]
But to farm this way, Wade needs a market for his wheat.
The baker Jeff Weissman, owner of Great Harvest Bread in north Seattle, says:
T12 2:06 … Wade… cares about the land… he cares about the birds…T12 2:25 …That fits in really tightly with what I believe in… That’s the kind of bakery I’m trying to actually operate here… 2:33 I want one where the farmer can make a living… I want one where the farmer cares about the land and he’s a steward of the land… and Wade is a phenomenal steward…
T18:12 … What I would really love to see happen is to have customers lined up out the door wanting to support this concept…
That’s where you and I come in. We have power as consumers.
T14:08 [Tess] “Hi! Welcome to Great Harvest. Can I get you a slice of bread?” [Sound of cash register…T13:37]
It’s good to learn where your food comes from. You might find a way to support those who, while feeding people, protect habitat and birds… like the Sharp-tailed Grouse.
[Repeat call of Sharp-tailed Grouse]
There’s more at our website, BirdNote.org. I’m Mary McCann.
Sound of Sharp-tailed Grouse provided by The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York and recorded by G.A. Keller.
All other sounds recorded by C. Peterson
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Chris Peterson
© 2011 Tune In to Nature.org March 2011 Narrator: Mary McCann