Herd About It?
by Ana Grarian
I was dreaming last night about our farm. In the dream I was sitting on the back porch enjoying a cup of coffee and looking down over the valley. The woodlot at the back of the property was golden with fall leaves. The corn field was drying down for harvest. The hayfield was starting to show new growth after third cutting and cows were grazing on the long southern field. Deer were eating the grass along the hedgerow. In the side yard my young apple trees were bent with apples. The grapevines in need of picking. Tomatoes were just about done and the brussell sprouts were looking tempting. Off and on a squeal could be heard from the pig pen as they pushed each other away from the feeder.
In South Carolina we have friends with a small piece of property. It is surrounded by a hundred acres of forest. Soon the forest will be gone. Developer’s are moving in to build a new community. First the logger’s will come in and harvest the best logs. Then the bulldozers will push the rest into big piles where they will be burned. The dozers will then sculpt the ground into the developer’s idea of a beautiful rolling landscape. A landscape that just happens to provide for the most allowable homesites for the acreage.
What about the community that already lives there? Oh I don’t mean the people like our friends and their neighbors whose lives will be changed forever by traffic and noise. Though I do have compassion for how they feel about it. I am thinking about the deer and birds, rabbits, squirrels, snakes etc. All those inabitants who have no voice, no vote, no power, and no way to understand what is happening to them.
My dog and I have spent many hours walking through that forest. It is a wonderland. A few hundred feet in you forget that there is a busy road along one side of it. It’s so different from our northern forests with its sandy soil and huge quatrz crystals some the size of small logs.
What do those critters think when the bulldozers start in? Do they look for a place to hide thinking it’s temporary like kids on four-wheelers? Where do they go for the night when they find out their homes are gone? Where do they go to eat when their cover is destroyed?
Is it sort of like 9-11 for them?