Facebook icon Twitter icon Flicker icon You Tube icon

Open Spaces

A Talk on the Wild Side.

A Time to Celebrate Wilderness

 grassy beach under blue skyA beach in Key West Wilderness. Photo by Kristie Killam/USFWS

Lions and tigers and bears?  For real?  

Yes. Wilderness is home to mountain lions, grizzlies and black bears, tiger salamanders, and so much more! Wilderness provides homes to birds, mammals, butterflies and hundreds, of other types of animals and plants. It also preserves the clean air, clean water, and wild spaces that sustain our own lives.  

3 mountain lions in treeMountain lions in UL Bend Wilderness in Montana. Photo by FWS

September is National Wilderness Month, as established by a presidential proclamation signed August 31, 2021. The proclamation points out that we are privileged to be able to enjoy the irreplaceable wilderness areas that "amaze us, inspire us, fill us with pride, support our lives and livelihoods, and belong to all of us in equal measure." 

black salamander with yellow marks on pebblesEastern tiger salamander. Photo by Caitlin Smith/USFWS

So this month, we celebrate and reflect on the National Wilderness Preservation System established by the Wilderness Act of 1964. Ever since, wilderness has become an important part of our natural heritage.

In wilderness, you can paddle, hike, fish, and simply revel in the solitude of places where "the earth and its community of life are untrammeled.” These days, there are more than 800 wilderness areas spanning more than 111 million acres in the United States. National wildlife refuges protect more than 20 million acres of wilderness from the rugged wilds of Alaska to the serene wilderness in the Florida Keys.

bear walks up creek toward cameraBrown bear in Kenai Wilderness in Alaska. Photo by Colin Canterbury

During National Wilderness Month, try to experience some of these awe-inspiring landscapes and see if you can find some lions, tigers, and bears (from a safe distance!) Or choose some wilderness areas where beasts are highly unlikely to roam. But we can all reflect on the physical, spiritual, and economic benefits that wilderness areas provides  and recommit to their preservation and protection, today and for future generations.

Conservation stewardship of these important public lands is an essential component of the Biden-Harris administration’s “America the Beautiful” initiative, a decade-long challenge to pursue a locally led and voluntary, nationwide effort to conserve, connect, and restore the lands, waters, and wildlife upon which we all depend. 

Comments are not allowed for this entry.
Untitled Document