Sunday, September 30, 2012


Romanticizing John Muir seems to have reached epidemic proportions. I thought the National Park Service biography was a bit over the top until I found Mountain Days: The John Muir Musical. Nothing strikes fear into the hearts of grown men like the phrase 'Broadway-style musical'.

Part of this tradition is giving Muir an unbelievable Scottish accent which sounds more like a Hollywood idea of a Scottish accent than an actual accent. You can tell it's not genuine if you can understand what he's saying. Frustrated by this I went in search of Muir's own voice. Only to find, surprisingly perhaps, it was never captured. Unless you know differently...

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Muir and Roosevelt

The PBS show The National Parks: Americas best idea by Ken Burns is not actually available at the PBS site anymore but they do have a nice website on the show with some clips and outtakes. You can of course rent the shows or stream them - I think they are on Netflix on demand for example.

Here's a very pertinent segment describing John Muir's camping trip to Yosemite with President Roosevelt.

Muir and Roosevelt always struck me as a very odd couple. Apparently I'm not the only one, here's a cartoon by Kate Beaton.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Failed metaphors

 If you want to get a bit more excited about reading your textbook then here is the lead author, Peter Kareiva, giving a very provocative talk - Failed Metaphors and A New Environmentalism for the 21st Century.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Welcome to the Fall 2012 Conservation Ecology class. Unlike a class website this blog is not reset back to zero each quarter. The old postings are still available below and you can access them by topic using the labels (on the right hand side if you scroll down a bit). There's lots of interesting stuff there.

Lectures slides will be posted after each lecture and they will appear under 'Links' on the right hand side. Papers for discussion section will also be posted here, right under the links section in the imaginatively named 'Discussion section' section.

You are all welcome, and encouraged, to comment on the posts. You can also write your own posts on anything that is relevant to class but to do this you will need to be added as a contributor. Everyone will get an invitation to join (it comes from Google, not me). If you lose this then just send me an e-mail and I'll send you another invitation to join. It's a simple process.Some more instructions on posting are available here and this document is always available via a link at the top right.