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More Letters From You

This blog compiles a number of letters we received over the last couple of months. We appreciate hearing your thoughts about Watch for Wildlife and your concerns about wildlife-vehicle collisions, and we are happy to get program materials to you.

Dear Watch for Wildlife,

I had driven a taxi for 30 yrs and sadly have seen many animals who did not make their crossing. I was out once on a rural road when a large bird flew up, out of the grasses growing in the ditch. It flew right into my van. I did not know what had happened so I pulled over and walked back to see. There was a gorgeous bird laying on the side of the road. I picked it up and took it back to the van. Unfortunately the impact had broken its neck. I felt so bad about it and wanted to see what kind of bird it was so when I got back I went to my vet with it. They told me it was a partridge. They disposed of it there for me.

You always have to be extra aware when driving through country areas here; and in town for deer. I would love to have a bumper sticker and a magnet for my vehicle now. I still own the taxi office in New Glasgow so if you would like to send any more we will put them on the vans. We have 4 vans on right now and would be happy to help spread awareness . Thank you :)

Wildlife and the environment are both concerns with me. They are important for all of our futures. We are doing a bang up job at destroying both here in Nova Scotia and awareness and concern must be raised among the people here. We cannot trust our Provincial Government to protect either from bad practices so we must do what we can to promote the welfare and protection of both. Too many take for granted both will always be here.

With the busyness of life now we tend to forget we travel through the animals' neighbourhoods and we have to respect them also. Everyone watches for kids and and people walking but smaller travellers are there too. Please send magnets and brochures.

I share your concerns and am glad that there is now a group for this. I think people might be more liable to donate if in addition to general donations, you had a goal to build an underpass or an overpass every year, with specific funds going to this. Even if it started out with a simple underpass for frog and toad hatches, it could evolve into something bigger and expand to all provinces.

I don't think telling driver's to watch for wildlife is going to have a huge impact as in today's world most people speed (unfortunately it's the way of today's life). If animals have a safe corridor they will hopefully use it. The government should be on board with this as this has been successful where they have implemented highway underpasses. I would be happy to start the donations with $100 if you did this.

Dear WFW, My name is Hope and I'm a student at Riverside Education Center. In school, we are doing a project where we are researching Nova Scotian environmental help groups. So if you can help me out, I have a few questions.

1. Where in Nova Scotia are you based?

2. How did this group get started?

3. Who can be a part of this and how do you join?

Dear Hope,

Thank you so much for getting in touch, and for your interest. Here are the answers to your questions. I hope you do well with your project.

1. Watch for Wildlife is a program of the Sierra Club Canada Foundation based out of Halifax, Nova Scotia and Lunenburg NS (as I run the program and live in Lunenburg). The program has also expanded to New Brunswick and our Outreach Coordinator works out of Fredericton.

2. I initiated and developed the Watch for Wildlife program in collaboration with the Sierra Club due to my knowledge of and concern for wildlife-vehicle collisions in Nova Scotia and on our roads and highways everywhere.

3. People can get involved as citizens scientists or by volunteering to help raise awareness of both the problem and collision prevention tips by helping to give out Watch for Wildlife bumper magnets and brochures.

If people are interested in helping to track wildlife collisions on their road or in their area, they can get in touch with us and connect to the project on INaturalist Canada.

And, here is an example of the kind of request we get regularly:

Hi Watch for Wildlife,

I am wondering how I am able to get a bumper sticker or magnet for my car? I love the idea and it is a wonderful reminder to others around. Thanks

We are glad to get bumper magnets and program brochures (now available for Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and in French) to anyone who writes and asks.

Thanks to everyone for writing, and for your support!

- Wanda Baxter, Program Manager, Watch for Wildlife

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