I think they are essential---even predators. Urbanized areas are still ecosystems. People can live around wildlife safely. It just takes education and common sense. We greatly overestimate the danger that wildlife poses. We have become very fearful. People freak out if they see goose poop and think they are going to get sick. People panic if they see a coyote and assume packs of coyotes are going to harm them. None of this is true. Does that mean that there aren't instances of wildlife/human conflict or danger? No. But every single thing we do has risk. We drive cars which is a leading cause of death and we assume that risk because we derive benefit--and so on with our modern life. I would argue that we should assume the miniscule risk of coexisting with nature because the downside is that our planet cannot survive with humans alone. View Comment
Articles like these stir up fear. Any person with common sense would know not to go make friends with a bear, keep your distance, etc. I mean, let's give people credit for having a few brain cells at least, despite evidence to the contrary. There is no way around it---writing an article about black bears in Westchester in this particular tone stirs up fear---nothing else. How about an article with another tone, such as "Wow, can you believe we actually have an ecosystem that can sustain anything other than CVS's and McMansions? How miraculous!" Any wild animal that manages to exist in this suburban wasteland is deserving of our respect, not fear. The Voice's last article about "geese taking over the world" is another case in point.
And don't be naive. When a police report is made about a "sighting" the animal's life is in danger, not likely the person's. People are far, far more threatening to animals than they are to us. A friend of mine told me that he once saw a cop pursuing a coyote that was running into the woods. The animal was running AWAY from people and was still being pursued. He took out his cell phone and was ready to film in case the officer shot the animal---which very well may have happened had someone not been there to advocate for the creature.
Bears, coyotes, and other wildlife are essential. Coyotes keep rodent populations under control, and guess what, the mice that coyotes eat are the main carriers of Lyme disease. Bears also have an essential function. What we should fear is their absence, not their presence. View Comment
In the event of a bear sighting notify 911? Seriously? You all do know that humans are not the only species on the planet, right? Even though we are doing our best to obliterate every other life form, bears, coyotes, raccoons etc. do have a right to exist without law enforcement being notified. Can you imagine response to an actual crime or health emergency being delayed because someone felt the need to report a wildlife sighting? View Comment
Thank you for this article. I want to emphasize your last point about pesticides. Every year, my joy at the arrival of spring is dampened by the ubiquitous yellow "WARNING Pesticide" signs on so many lawns. These chemicals are bad for bees, birds, squirrels, pets, people, our waterways, everything...there is no upside to them at all. Skip the secret sauce, indeed. View Comment
I'm aware of that. I'm a Scarsdale resident. The problem is that it is too easy to say "We're above all that ranking stuff" but the taxpayers deserve some kind of accountability. Yes, we'd like the "data." View Comment
This article had a strange way of phrasing this incident: "a victim of bird strike" and "plane hit by bird" sounds a little skewed. I don't think a flock of seagulls was gunning for a plane. Perhaps a more neutral "collision with bird" might be better? There is a trend of framing events to drum up fear of nature and wildlife, which always results in one thing: killing. Many people are not aware that airports routinely kill birds around airports. It does very little to impact air safety because birds fly--you can't kill all the birds in the sky. View Comment
what "services" are you referring to? I don't get any "services" my roads are barely plowed in the snow and my town has potholes that could swallow a car. schools are "bring your own" everything. Services? View Comment
NY is tax hell. Taxes are killing us here. Some of us are tied to this area and bear this burden like a ball and chain. I don't see what we are getting for it either. The roads are messed up, in the schools you have to provide tissues and all sorts of supplies, we pay a fortune for health care, state universities have huge tuition, and even the poor have their services cut. What, really, are we funding? There has to be egregious waste going on and they just keep raising the taxes and we all just pay up. View Comment
If a human being lacks empathy, there is very little that can be done to help them. They are a serious danger to animals, children, and people.
The problem is that there is no place for people like this where society can be protected from them and they can get the help they need. We know they are ticking time bombs. They usually have a history of torturing animals, violent fantasies, etc. but what does anyone really do? In this case it was especially egregious because Mom gave the kid an actual arsenal and taught him how to use it. View Comment
And what do we get for these taxes? So little. My child goes to Westchester public schools and they have to supply all sorts of school supplies that (when I grew up) were basically provided. Tissues, wipes, everything. Pretty soon they will be supplying their own toilet paper. And then, I recently found out that my high school aged daughter has "free periods" when a teacher is absent, rather than a sub. Now, we all know that subs do nothing anyway, but there something really cheesy about having no one in charge when a teacher is out sick esp with what we pay in taxes.
This is tip of the iceberg. We have layers and layers of govt in Westchester and what are they doing other than collecting large salaries, benefits, and pensions while the rest of the county has no health care, can't afford housing, and is barely making it. View Comment
Truer words were never spoken. This area is insane. And when you factor in wages, which are rock bottom for most people, you have an absolutely idiotic place to live. Some of us are stuck here. View Comment
Sounds like the author needs to read the actual verbiage of the proposed legislation. It merely states that public discussion needs to happen before enacting lethal methods to kill wildlife. Ya know, democracy 101. Why is that so radical? What is interesting is why there was never any discussion in the past.
As it stands now, the govt can pretty much wipe out most animals using tax money without telling anyone. And the DO. Wake up people. They kill all species, not just geese and turkeys. They kill because it makes them look useful and makes money. They make up reasons. They make up numbers. 250,000 is a questionable number. The same people who determine "how many" of a species there are, are the ones who determine how many "need" to be killed. Hmm, how convenient. The TAXPAYERS should be the ones to decide. We are bleeding taxes in Westchester and when they have these animal culls, they have an entourage of "biologists" vans, mobile gas chambers, poison, sharpshooters, traps, etc etc. all paid for by ME, so yeah, I'd like a say in what happens. And I vote to let the wildlife LIVE. If there are too many of anything, it would be people, cars, malls, houses, and so on.
Not to mention these are animals that deserve to live, not fodder for some bloated, power-hungry govt agency. View Comment
To the poster who claims that deer are over running the environment and pushing out other species, you need to look in the mirror. Last I checked there weren't 7 plus billion deer polluting the planet. Humans win the prize for that one. I think we destroy more forests than any herd of deer.
Killing deer is something that they have admitted they will be doing every year, at a very high cost to donors and taxpayers (because the shooters are from a govt agency). So if you are going to spend money every year anyway, why not use birth control (which lasts for 3 years anyway). Sounds like they didn't do their homework, and didn't foresee how much the public would be disgusted by this. This is a repulsive, cruel, unnecessary, and wasteful plan. I hope they lose donations over this big time. View Comment
Please, if anyone out there is even thinking of leaving their dog or cat outside in this weather, DON'T. My heart breaks for all the abandoned street cats out there in this weather struggling to survive. View Comment
I hope that Scarsdale can do a better job plowing the streets. Driving from White Plains into Scarsdale--the streets in White Plains are clear but Scarsdale is barely touched. Same with Eastchester/Scarsdale border. What is going on with that? View Comment