Forests are living entities. They are more than just a bunch of trees. Trees need the birds, the small animals, the lush foliage & undergrowth. All the things that make for an 'old forest' or a mature one.
As a child, I loved going into the woods. Watching for birds, small animals or to be lucky enough to spy a fox – those are pleasant childhood memories – made all the more bittersweet by what I see today as an adult.
This is a sweet reminder that the national Parks in the USA are not 'as" devastated by poachers as other areas I've seen. On a recent visit to Angkor Archeological Park, I was struck by how few (none) ground animals I saw. No squirrels, chipmunks, you know – little critters of some species. There were birds – lots of magpies.
Due to environmental concerns, tourists were kept to paved paths that outline the park's complex. Perhaps if I had gotten off trails, I would have seen small game – keeping a fearful distance from humans? I don't know.
I do know that poaching happens. I saw a few monkeys, but not a lot. Not as many as I've seen in Phetchaburi Thailand for sure.
But these happy – if not astonished bears are joyful reminders that healthy forests do exist. There are places in the world where the economy doesn't push man to choose between animals under their care & feeding their families.
*view this viral video on Facebook
below - you must be logged into FB to see the video.
I'm so thankful for aspects of my childhood that allowed me opportunities to connect with nature. Watching bears on the parkway as a child, looking for fox tracks on walks through the woods - or even as an adult, watching the monkeys carve a niche of survival in Phetchaburi.
The first through the final steps are up to you. I can only walk beside you and befriend you. - Sunny Shores
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