Wildlife Conservation and Preservation

Flickr User Noel Reynolds, licensed under CC BY 2.0.

The discovery of a second rabid bat in two months in Chandler has spurred the Oklahoma State Department of Health to issue a release reminding Oklahomans of the dangers of rabies and the importance of vaccinations.

“Oklahoma is seeing more cases of rabies in the state this year than previous years,” said State Public Health Veterinarian LeMac’ Morris, in a statement. “With more sightings of skunks and bats, this is the perfect time to remind pet owners about the importance of vaccinating family pets, and even livestock.”

Our guests are the journalists Alastair Gee and Dani Anguiano, who are also the co-authors of "Fire in Paradise: An American Tragedy." The book documents the super-destructive wildfire that consumed the town of Paradise, California, in early November of 2018, when a community of 27,000 people was swallowed by the ferocious Camp Fire. "Fire in Paradise" offers a moving, far-reaching narrative based upon hundreds of interviews with residents, firefighters and police, and scientific experts.

ABC Birds.org

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Environmentalists are questioning spending by wildlife managers who oversee a conservation effort for the lesser prairie chicken after money was used on a building and salaries rather than on projects to help the bird.

(Note: This interview first aired back in October.) Our guests are the Harvard evolutionary biologist Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and the award-winning science writer Kathryn Bowers, who tell us about their jointly written book, "Wildhood." It makes several fascinating connections between the lives and behaviors of teenage animals and those of teenage human beings. Per the Los Angeles Times: "The vivid storytelling and fascinating scientific digressions in [this book] make it a pleasurable read.

Our guests are the Harvard evolutionary biologist Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and the award-winning science writer Kathryn Bowers, who tell us about their jointly written new book, "Wildhood." It makes several fascinating connections between the lives and behaviors of teenage animals and those of teenage human beings. Per the Los Angeles Times: "The vivid storytelling and fascinating scientific digressions in [this book] make it a pleasurable read.

Our guest is the gardening expert Benjamin Vogt, who grew up in Oklahoma and Minnesota and is now based in Nebraska, and who is also the author of "A New Garden Ethic: Cultivating Defiant Compassion for an Uncertain Future." Vogt will deliver the keynote address at a day-long gathering happening in OKC on Wednesday the 28th called "Rewilding Oklahoma: A Symposium for People, Places, and Pollinators." This event will highlight statewide successes in pollinator conservation, and you can learn more about it here.

(Note: This interview originally aired earlier this year.) Our guest is Frans de Waal, a professor in Emory University's Psychology Department as well as the director of the Living Links Center at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. He joins us to discuss his book, "Mama's Last Hug: Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves." Per The New York Times Book Review, the book is "game-changing.... For too long, emotion has been cognitive researchers' third rail.... But nothing could be more essential to understanding how people and animals behave.

Albert Bierstadt, Buffalo Hunt, 1860. Oil on canvas, Private Collection, image courtesy of Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Our guest is Laura Fry, the Senior Curator and Curator of Art at Gilcrease Museum here in Tulsa. She is also one of the curators of a striking new show at that museum, which she tells us about. Per the Gilcrease website: "Gilcrease Museum and the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming, have partnered to present the groundbreaking exhibition 'Albert Bierstadt: Witness to a Changing West.' Albert Bierstadt (1830–1902) is best known as one of America's premier western landscape artists.

Our guest is Teresa Miller, the local author and Director Emerita of the Center for Poets and Writers at OSU. Miller is also the co-editor of a new anthology, which she tells us about: "Love Can Be: A Literary Collection about Our Animals." It's a gathering of about thirty acclaimed authors, all of them celebrating pets, animals, creatures, and other forms of life: cats, birds, frogs, butterflies, bears, dogs, raccoons, horses, etc.

News flash: Cats do not meow at random. Nor do they hiss because they have nothing better to do. Cat sounds do have a purpose -- and they can carry important messages. But what ARE those messages? Our guest on ST has some very interesting answers: Susanne Schötz, a professor at Lund University in Sweden, is part of a long-standing research program exploring how and why cats use vocal communication...with each other and with their human caretakers. Schötz has a new book out called "The Secret Language of Cats: How to Understand Your Cat for a Better, Happier Relationship."

On this edition of ST, we learn about a free-to-the-public event happening tomorrow (Saturday the 22nd) at the Turkey Mountain Urban Wilderness Area in Tulsa (at 6850 South Elwood Avenue). Tulsa's River Parks Authority will present "Monarchs on the Mountain," a festival celebrating the vital role that Eastern Oklahoma plays in the Great Monarch Butterfly Migration, every autumn, from Canada to Mexico.

Our guest is Roger Thompson, a Tulsa native and nonfiction writer who also directs the Program in Writing and Rhetoric at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Formerly, Thompson was a wilderness canoe guide in Minnesota; later on, he founded an environmental program in Banff, Alberta, Canada. His newest book, which he told us about recently while visiting Tulsa, grew directly out his longtime appreciation of outdoor exploration.

The Tulsa Zoo's popular Conservation On Tap event will happen soon. It's a sold-out gathering, a fundraiser from which all profits will go toward saving chinchillas in the wild. We learn about these important, furry, and quite threatened creatures -- their habitat, habits, history, etc. -- on today's StudioTulsa.

If you grew up here in the Sooner State -- and if you are, as they say, of a certain age -- then you might well wonder where all the Texas horned lizards, or horned toads, or horny toads, have gone.... Whatever you call them, they used to be readily apparent all over these parts, or so it seemed -- but no longer. What happened? Our guest is Chad Love, a freelance writer and editor based in Woodward, Oklahoma.

Our guest is Marcus Eriksen, a naturalist, author, and environmental activist whose latest book -- "Junk Raft" -- details his 2008 sea voyage on a craft made from plastic bottles and other recycled materials; it's a trek he made in order to demonstrate the blight of plastic waste in the world’s oceans.

On this installment of ST, we are discussing State Question 777, the so-called "Right to Farm" proposal, which voters statewide will decide on come November. As was noted recently in a Tulsa World editorial: "Both sides in the debate over State Question 777...have been guilty of excesses in their arguments. The proponents have suggested that only a state constitutional measure could shield cherished rural values of decent working farmers from the meddling hands of bureaucrats and lunatic eco-extremists.

(Note: This program originally aired back in April.) Late one night in 2011, a large animal collided with an SUV on a Connecticut parkway. This animal was not a deer -- as is, sadly, so often the case. It was a 140-pound mountain lion...and it had been born in the Black Hills of South Dakota...in 2009!

On this installment of ST, we speak with the corporate lawyer, conservation leader, and author Frederic C. Rich. His new book, just out, is called "Getting to Green" -- it argues for a new bipartisan coalition in American politics and culture in order to fix the ongoing (and basically nonfunctioning) mess that is the current Green Movement in the US.

There are six waterways in eastern Oklahoma that are considered so environmentally and economically significant they're given special consideration and protection from the state. These so-called Scenic Rivers were profiled in a special half-hour radio doc created by StateImpact reporters Joe Wertz and Logan Layden in 2014. This doc was originally aired as a four-part radio series, and we are pleased to re-broadcast it today on StudioTulsa.

Late one night in 2011, a large animal collided with an SUV on a Connecticut parkway. This animal was not a deer -- as is, sadly, so often the case. It was a 140-pound mountain lion...and it had been born in the Black Hills of South Dakota...in 2009!

Our guest on this edition of ST is Sandra Postel, a well-respected expert on freshwater conservation who's also the founder of the Global Water Policy Project. She co-created Change the Course, a national freshwater conservation and restoration campaign, and in 2010, she was appointed a Freshwater Fellow of the National Geographic Society, where she still serves as the Society's leading water expert.

(Note: This interview originally aired back in January.) On this installment of ST, we speak by phone with Anthony Barnosky, a Professor of Integrated Biology at UC-Berkeley and a leading scientist specializing on how global change affects biodiversity and ecosystem function.

On this installment of ST, a fascinating discussion with the Tennessee-based storyteller and performer Jim Pfitzer, who will soon appear onstage in Tulsa in "A Standard of Change," the one-man play that he created about the life and work of Aldo Leopold (1887-1948). An influential American author, scientist, ecologist, forester, and conservationist, Leopold -- the "father of wildlife biology," as some have called him -- is probably best known as the author of "A Sand County Almanac," which is a literary classic that's especially popular with environmentalist readers.

Tomorrow afternoon and evening -- on Tuesday the 18th, at the Tulsa Garden Center, from 1pm till 9:15pm -- the Tulsa Audubon Society, in collaboration with WING IT (as in "Wildlife In Need Group -- In Tulsa") and Wild Birds Unlimited, will present the second annual Wild at Art festival.