Tag: Frozen Planet

Caring for the family: Correction Truth.

Nature so often guides us in how to behave.

Yes, nature can be cruel but in ways that we understand. Animals, to the best of my knowledge, do not hunt for sport. Animals do not lie. They don’t seek political power (sorry; couldn’t resist that!).

All of which is my short introduction to an item that Dan sent me yesterday.


Cesare Brai’s photo.

A wolf pack: the first 3 are the old or sick, they give the pace to the entire pack.
If it was the other way round, they would be left behind, losing contact with the pack. In case of an ambush they would be sacrificed.

Then come 5 strong ones, the front line. In the center are the rest of the pack members, then the 5 strongest following. Last is alone, the alpha. He controls everything from the rear.

In that position he can see everything, decide the direction. He sees all of the pack. The pack moves according to the elders pace and help each other, watch each other.

For once I am speechless, I knew that wolves are different, but didn’t realize how much we could learn from them…


Compelling, eh! But factually correct?


In this case Nature is not guiding us. It is man misguiding us.

Or in the words of the Truth or Fiction website:

That makes for a compelling and inspirational story about teamwork — but it’s not true.

David Attenborough took the photo in question for the BBC’s “Frozen Planet” Series in 2011. It shows 25 timber wolves hunting bison in Wood Buffalo National Park in Canada. The female alpha wolf led the pack, and the others followed in a single file line to save energy as they made their way through deep snow, according to the environmental website Benvironment.

Wolf packs are typically about half the size of the pack pictured in the photo from 2011. Most packs don’t hunt prey the size of bison (which is 10 times the size of a wolf), but the larger pack is able to. And the wolves walking in a single file line through deep snow is a classic example of how they’re able to use weather conditions to their advantage while hunting prey that’s much larger than them.

Also, the idea that wolves have to be on the lookout for “ambushes” or attacks isn’t true, either. Wolves are at the top of the food chain and have no natural predators. Aside from turf battles with other wolves (which wouldn’t start in an ambush) bears are the only threat to wolves in Canada. Even so, experts say that bears are only able to prey on wolf pups because grown wolves are too fast, swift and clever to get caught by them.

I will close with this quotation from Andre Gide:

Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it.

Make a difference – now!

A plea to sign a global call not to delay action on global warming

How many of you in Europe watched the final episode of Sir Peter Attenborough’s Frozen Planet series, entitled On Thin Ice?

Did you watch the short video in last week’s post, The power of truth?  If not, it’s below.

Here’s a piece from a BBC news item from yesterday,

A hungry polar bear

It is an image that is sure to shock many people.

An adult polar bear is seen dragging the body of a cub that it has just killed across the Arctic sea ice.

Polar bears normally hunt seals but if these are not available, the big predators will seek out other sources of food – even their own kind.

The picture was taken by environmental photojournalist Jenny Ross in Olgastretet, a stretch of water in the Svalbard archipelago.

“This type of intraspecific predation has always occurred to some extent,” she told BBC News.

“However, there are increasing numbers of observations of it occurring, particularly on land where polar bears are trapped ashore, completely food-deprived for extended periods of time due to the loss of sea ice as a result of climate change.”

Re-read that last segment of that last sentence, “completely food-deprived for extended periods of time due to the loss of sea ice as a result of climate change.

So with all that in mind, please read on.


What if someone told you we should abandon all hope for global climate action until 2020? Well, that’s exactly the proposal that the United States is pushing at the UN Climate Talks taking place this week in Durban, South Africa. The 2020 delay might well be the worst idea ever.

Waiting nine years for climate action isn’t just a delay, it’s a death sentence for communities on the front lines of the climate crisis — and it could slam the door on ever getting carbon pollution levels below the safe upper limit of 350 parts per million.

It’s not too late to stop this delay from going through. Over the next three days, our team of 350.org activists in Durban will be working with our partners at Avaaz and allies from around the world to isolate the United States — and build support for the African nations that are fighting for real climate action. But it will take a massive grassroots outcry to demonstrate that people everywhere are taking a stand to prevent the United States negotiators from signing away our future.

If we raise an international alarm before the talks end on Friday, we can convince the US to get out of way of progress and help unlock the global process that can lead to bold climate action all around the world.

Click here to add your voice to a global call to action we’re delivering in Durban: www.350.org/durban

The climate talks in South Africa end in just 48 hours, and it’s vital that we ramp up the pressure now. To make sure the US gets the message, our team on the ground here in Durban will deliver your messages directly to the US negotiating team at a high-impact event we’re helping to pull together on Friday. We can’t say much more about it now, but suffice to say our message will be unavoidable.

This year, the 350 network has shown that people power can truly move the planet in the right direction. We mobilized hundreds of thousands of people to push for climate action in nearly every country on earth. We beat back the Keystone XL pipeline when no one said it was possible. We took over the radio waves to spread a message of hope and action on the climate crisis. And through our actions, we helped keep the hope of saving our planet — and reaching 350 ppm — alive.

The UN Climate Talks here in Durban aren’t going to get us back to 350 by themselves, but they can keep the option open by making progress on a legally binding, international framework to help nations make serious cuts in carbon emissions. In 2012, we’re going to need to do all we can to challenge the fossil fuel companies that are the real obstacles to progress. Breaking their stranglehold on our governments is the only way to really unlock these negotiations.

But right now, the most important thing we can do is keep the possibility of a strong international climate deal alive by pushing back on the United States negotiating team. In recent months, President Obama has shown that he’ll stand up for the climate, but only if he’s got a movement to back him up. On the Keystone pipeline, he’s been doing the right thing by blocking Republican efforts to push it through — now we need him to do the right thing on the international stage.

There’s no guarantee that we’ll be successful, but we owe it to our allies across the planet — many of whom are already feeling the impacts of climate change — to resist the chorus of cynics and keep hope alive. As Nelson Mandela said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” The 350 network has pulled off the impossible before — now’s the time to step up the pressure again.

Please add your voice today: www.350.org/durban

Let’s do this,

Jamie Henn for the whole 350.org team

P.S. We have just 48 hours to build a huge groundswell of pressure. Please help make it go viral with a few clicks on Twitterand Facebook — tag your popular friends, and post it again and again.