Friday, April 12, 2013

SCLOC Thanks Jeff Heller for His Excellent Letter to the Editor of The LEADER

To: Stella Dupree Sent: Friday, April 5, 2013 To The Editor: Here we go again! The environmentalists, the anti-gas drilling, anti-progress, anti-everything except "green" energy folks, have found a new threat in gas drilling - now that all their other concerns have been largely debunked by reputable science. " Drilling Boom Threatens Forest Wildlife." We know this is true because we saw it on the front page of our newspapers on 4/13/13! But wait a minute - there's something 'rotten in Denmark' here. The article says the reclaimed pipelines (great picture of a good reclamation job) are a threat to forest wildlife. Why then have wildlife biologists, for at least fifty years, been telling us that food plots in the woods are one of the best things we can do to improve habitat for our wildlife? Those reclaimed pipelines are nothing but huge food plots. They are especially valuable when they are cut through the woods because they offer cover on both edges - an extremely valuable feature to wildlife. Not pointed out in the article (big surprise here) was the fact that all the pipelines, existing and proposed, might effect as much as 1% of the woodland in Susquehanna and Allegheny counties in Pennsylvania, and most of that is on private land! The devastation is unimaginable. No, I mean it really is unimaginable. "Hawks swoop down and gobble up songbirds." I guess I have to start shooting those Coopers Hawks and Sharp Shins that visit my feeding station regularly. No, I can't do that! They're federally protected. Some environmentalists think the hawks are more valuable than some of those nice sounding Blue Jays that the hawks love to dust once in a while. And now I know where all those weeds in my lawn are coming from - the droppings of the Cowbirds at my feeders! We can't have conditions like that in our woods! Especially not in woods with good canopy cover - where nothing can grow on the woods floor. Those barren areas are a high nutrition source for deer and turkey - aren't they? And ground-nesting birds nests are much easier to see in those plush pipelines' ground growth than they are on the barren woods floor - aren't they? Mr. Begos' story is so bad you have to wonder if at least some of it wasn't written 'tongue in cheek'. But, after five years of debunking so many of the environmentalists' ridiculous statements, it was probably all serious. So, the moral of the story is, once again: "Beam me up Scotty, there's no intelligent life down here". Jeff Heller

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