Update from the Field 8/11/05

Buffalo Field Campaign (BFC) News from the Field August 11, 2005


In This Issue:
* Update From the Field--BFC Needs Your Help With Firewood!
* BFC Roadshows to Visit West and East Coasts
* Four More Days! Bison Hunt Comments Due 8/15
* Last Words


* Update From the Field--BFC Needs Your Help With Firewood!

The prolonged drought, coupled with the intense heat of July and August, has led to extremely dry conditions in Montana and dozens of wildfires have flared up in the past week. White ash drifts from the sky like snow, leaving mottled grey patterns on every exposed surface. Smoke softens the sunlight, lending a dusk-like appearance to the noonday sun and painting the sunset with surreal rosy shades.

The dry and smokey heat of August doesn't lend itself easily to thoughts of January nights with the earth blanketed beneath feet of snow and the thermometer plunging down to 50 below zero. But we know it's coming. For the ninth straight winter our cabin above Hebgen Lake will be home to dozens of volunteers dedicating their every waking hour to standing with--and defending--the Yellowstone buffalo, America's last wild herd. After all the planning, preparation, and follow-up from our meeting with the governor we switched gears and began, in earnest, getting things ready for the coming season.

One of the more formidable tasks we face each Summer and Fall is the gathering of the innumerable cords of wood necessary to keep our volunteers warm through one of the most frigid climates in the country. Volunteers have spent most of the past two weeks cutting, gathering, and hauling firewood back to our cabin, working long hours under the hot sun. With a hard-working crew things were going extremely well, the pile of wood growing larger by the day.

That all changed on Tuesday, when the engine on our late-model green Dodge Ram pickup, our wood hauling machine, blew. This truck was a godsend, donated years ago by a kind man named Art, who made a special trip to Montana to help us fix a more minor problem a couple summers ago. Now, halfway through our wood-gathering chores, we're in need of a good work truck.

If you have a truck you'd like to donate to a great cause, or if you are able to make a monetary donation to help us purchase one (both are tax-deductible), we could really use the help. With Montana's planned bison hunt scheduled to begin in November on both the north and west boundaries of Yellowstone, we're going to need to run two camps at once. With our focus on raising adequate funds to cover the additional expenses, the need for a new truck couldn't have been more ill-timed.

Please help us if you can. Our ninth season promises to be challenging. We need to keep our focus on protecting the buffalo by developing and implementing a winning strategy for their long-term protection. If you have truck to donate or if you want to help with a monetary donation, please do so today!

Make a secure donation from our web site: http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org

or send a check through the mail: BFC PO Box 957 West Yellowstone, MT 59758

A hearty thanks goes out to Art and the green Ram. Your generous gift kept us warm and dry for years.

With the Buffalo!



* BFC Gearing up for West and East Coast Roadshows

From mid-August until mid-September Mike and Josh will travel the West Coast, visiting farmer's markets and giving presentations in communities from Los Angeles to Eugene. We've got great events scheduled, including benefits in the Bay Area with Native American musician and activist John Trudell and activist and speaker Julia Butterfly Hill.

Dan and Stephany will take to the road in October, travelling from North Carolina to Vermont, visiting colleges, cafes, and community centers with our video footage, stories, and inspiring message of buffalo protection.

For more information on the West and East Coast tours, click the link below, email bfc-media@wildrockies.org or call (406) 646-0070



* Four More Days! Bison Hunt Comments Due 8/15 For more information on the proposed hunt and talking points for your comments, please check our web site at: http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org/legislative/bisonhuntingbill.html


* Last Words "For seven years in a row, precipitation remained below normal. The snow that fell on the plowed-up fields of the Dakotas was so light that the ground, bereft of insulation, froze many feet down; the snow evaporated without penetrating and the spring rains, those that came, slid off the frozen ground into the rivers, leaving the land bare. The virgin prairie, grazed well within its carrying capacity by thirty million buffalo, could probably have withstood the wind and drought; ravaged by too many cattle and plowed up to make way for wheat, it could not. If not the worst man-made catastrophe in history, it was, at least, the quickest."

Marc Reisner on the Dust Bowl from Cadillac Desert

Buffalo Field Campaign PO Box 957 West Yellowstone, MT 59758
(406) 646-0070 bfc-media@wildrockies.org http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org



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