I notice the incredible volume of new construction as I drive through southern Ontario. The urban sprawl reminds me of molten lava, flowing over the country side. From a bird’s eye view, the larger cities have shingles that seem to touch, and it is difficult to see even a glimmer of grass between the houses. The old fields and natural forests are plowed and the wildlife – including coyotes – are forced to retreat or adapt. Cries of outrage echoed in the last year as suburban homeowners reported sighting coyotes in their backyards. Whose yard, I wondered. The media quickly spun the sightings into drama, instilling fear among homeowners. It peaked as hunters – disguised as vigilantes – were asked to seek out the coyotes and slaughter them. Contrary to popular belief, as a realtor I am not excited to see a plethora of new houses or big box stores being constructed in suburbia. I would much rather see the forests preserved and development instead focused on in-filling vacant lots and replacing derelict houses. Not only would this help the wildlife and natural areas, it would also help populate the areas surrounding the downtown core. The wonders of nature need to be reintroduced to our lives. The entire community needs to be encouraged to enjoy more time outdoors and the many gifts nature has to offer. I am so comforted by groups such as Coyote Watch Canada. It is a group of dedicated people who spend countless hours educating the community and helping to preserve wildlife. At Coyote Watch Canada seminars, leaders such as Lesley easily explain the importance of researching and understanding coyotes in order to have the knowledge to resolve and prevent conflict between humans and wildlife. She explains the importance of coyotes in helping maintain a balanced and healthy ecosystem, which in turn provides basic needs to people such as clean air and water. Whenever the pressure of our complex city life rattles my nerves and numbs my brain, I seek relief in the woods and when I hear coyotes calling in the distance, I am happy. I offer my gratitude to individuals and groups who help educate communities and preserve nature. My hope is that groups like Coyote Watch Canada will continue to teach children respect for nature and help restore balance in the environment. As Dr. Seuss wrote, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” A special thank you to Coyote Watch Canada for caring a whole awful lot.
Barbra Grumme - Century 21 Today Realty Brokerage Sales Representative