Hostile Takeover

August 4, 2008

Barred owls are driving threatened spotted owls out of their Northwest forest territory. Is it time to shoot them?


Hostile takeover
In the Pacific Northwest, scientists reluctantly consider killing barred owls to save increasingly threatened northern spotted owls.


Know your owl
An illustration showing the differences between the Northern Spotted Owl and Barred Owl. Also, listen to the call from each species.

Editor's Note

The company we keep
In the Pacific Northwest, where barred owls are competing with northern spotted owls, conservationists wonder what to do when a native species becomes an invasive species.


Measuring Tahoe’s blues
Jon Christensen accompanies scientists trying to measure the opacity and “blueness” of Lake Tahoe.

Book Reviews

Catastrophe or nature’s process
In the Blast Zone: Catastrophe and Renewal on Mount St. Helens is an anthology of essays, poems and scientific reports about the return of life to a volcanic landscape.
Riders and writers, hobos and fauxbeaux
In Riding Toward Everywhere, William T. Vollman describes his adventures rambling by freight train across the West.

Writers on the Range

Drilling with Charlie
Randy Udall’s friend Charlie has spent his life drilling for oil and natural gas.
Advice from a rancher: The risks make it fun
Today's economic woes remind Mary Flitner of a horse race years ago and the important lesson it taught her: Times are always tough for ranchers, so you might as well enjoy the gamble!

Dear Friends

Dear friends New and improved; HCN at Democratic National Convention in August; corrections.


The wandering lepidopterist
Eric Wagner joins naturalist Robert Michael Pyle on one leg of his first-ever “Big Year” – in which he will try to see as many different butterflies as he possibly can.
Going to the gasroots
In western Colorado, oil and gas companies mobilize in a publicity blitz to pack a Grand Junction hearing about proposed changes to the state’s natural gas drilling rules.
When endangered foxes are on the menu
Scientists faced a quandary when they had to consider killing golden eagles in order to save rare foxes on the Channel Islands off the California coast.

Two Weeks in the West

Drilling, wolves, guns and plutonium
“Drill here, drill now!” on the ground and in Western politics; Northern Rockies wolves protected again – and on the move; Obama backs Second Amendment; gas pains in the West; plutonium spill in Boulder.


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