Every week we speak about the amazing projects, products and survives that The Green Register provides to one-and-all. We have spent many months covering the products that are useful and necessary – in projects big and small – to help save our environment. But we have not yet touched upon the ‘green concept’ when it comes to the souls living in our environment that are the most affected by what us humans do.
Recently I was given the joy of meeting, through the technological highway, a man from St. Augustine, Florida who runs a company called Eco Tours. His name is Zach McKenna, and he is responsible for some of the most amazing research and work when it comes to animal life. He is a proponent for saving the dolphins who are a large part of Florida, as well as the Florida manatee which – frighteningly enough – is down to 4,000 because of environment issues, as well as power boats that seem to want to go 100mph not caring what they hurt along the way.
From the Defenders of Wildlife to the World Wildlife Federation to thousands of blogs, organizations, etc. – the people who strive to save our animals has become a huge support network that needs even more human help. These animals have a direct effect on our environment, from the nutrients in the soil, to the vast marshlands that are necessary to provide the animals and mammals with food, security, and the list goes on and on.
When we are talking about ‘going green’ or having the power to change our environment and make it healthier for the next generation, we must also think of these creatures who, without them, we would be in seriously big trouble. There are people on the earth who will say, what’s the big deal? I mean, they’ll feel bad that a certain species may be gone, but they don’t see the actual effect that life or that species has on their own existence. Trust me – there is a HUGE effect. From the largest whale to the smallest sea urchin, our oceans and planet work as a huge network of ecosystems; ecosystems that cannot provide you with your clean water, clean air, etc., without these animals.
Dolphins are highly intelligent marine mammals and are part of the family of toothed whales that includes orcas and pilot whales. They are found worldwide, mostly in shallow seas of the continental shelves, and are carnivores, mostly eating fish and squid. But what if there was no fish or squid left to eat? What happens then?
From the Keys and Everglades to the Panhandle’s white sand beaches, it is the great state of Florida that is home to some of the country’s most special places and wildlife, but also some of the most imperiled. Even though there are a great many vacation spots in Florida, humans have a tendency to hit these mammals with their power boats because there are no ‘slow zones’ located in certain places. I am a true believer that if you’re on vacation, you’re supposed to be relaxing so…why so fast? It would be very much like doing 100mph down the highway even though you see a group of kids in front of you. Would you do that? Would you plow through them? No. Which is why we need to turn the same sensibilities toward our other ‘friends’ in the water.
Add to that deforestation where animals are automatically thrust out of their homes, and those places that STILL exist in the world where you can head up into the air and simply shoot a defenseless creature in order to get a picture of it on your cell phone to show your friends, and the problems are still sickening. Murder is murder, guys – you can call it anything your want, but it’s still a kill and you should still go to prison for it.
There are related species in Florida that everyone – including the Defenders of Wildlife – are trying to protect and see thrive. From the Florida panther to the Florida black bear to sea turtles who are actually making their nests on the side of the ocean so that the ‘juvenile’ turtles won’t be killed by the boats and other predators – there are a number of species that have to be ‘seen!’
From working to establish a state-wide wildlife habitat network to protecting and restoring species at risk, there are many organizations who are using all their time and effort to help residents and wildlife come to a balance that is beneficial to one and all
And when it comes to vacation versus support, there is a balance there as well. Eco Tours has just celebrated their six-year anniversary which is truly amazing. Their mission is conservation through education. By utilizing kayaks, small research boats (the ones that Jacque Cousteau made famous), and even a new 27-foot catamaran, they get people out on the water and teach them about the beauty surrounding them, as well as let them enjoy a truly vibrant and interesting tour. From the estuary to the outlying environments, Eco Tours shows how all of these ‘facets’ tie back into our daily lives.
Eco Tours works with a very specialized group of dolphins that make their home on the inside of the estuary in St. Augustine, which says a lot about the productivity of the area. This ecosystem is wide – encompassing everything from Charleston down to Daytona Beach. There are incredibly fertile salt marshes that have actually been around 4500 years but have only been studied for the last 50 of those years. So, basically, Eco Tours is involved in a brand new branch of science. Something like this is truly exciting, because it shows that more and more people are learning – or taking the time to learn – about the environment and what it produces, and what the high costs are to us if it disappears.
Eco Tours and their work are a lot like The Green Register,in the fact that they are spreading the word. They have that ‘heart’ where they give everyone the knowledge they need in order to learn more about what’s happening around us. With The Green Register, we are updated on everything from the latest news coming out of Washington regarding various ‘green’ projects, all the way down to how each of us can improve our lifestyles by recycling. There is nothing left out when it comes to this incredible site.
Green architecture, green fashion, recycling – all of these are key points to be made when it comes to saving this earth. But always remember that there are other creatures out there besides us who need to survive!
If they don’t – we won’t. It’s as simple as that!
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