Take heart in hard times

From stowaway hatchlings to eager minds, there’s hope in the West.

 

One of the chicks that Development Associate Hannah Stevens’s hen hid away for an Earth Day surprise.
Hannah Stevens

Coronavirus has impacted communities across the country, including High Country News. But even as we remember lost loved ones, we take heart in the feathered friends brightening our spring.

Digital Editor Gretchen King’s bird feeders are attracting a crowd, including a brilliant Bullock’s oriole, and Development Associate Hannah Stevens was happily surprised on Earth Day by the arrival of two baby chicks. The intrepid mother hen stowed her hatchlings away in a hanging bushel basket in a shed for weeks of freezing temperatures.

As college classes move online, our staff members are helping out whenever they can. Associate Editor Emily Benson gave guest lectures to three different classes at the University of Idaho, focusing on science and environmental journalism. Photo Editor Roberto “Bear” Guerra joined the Global Oneness Project for a discussion about the relationship between human and natural landscapes.

We are sad to announce the passing of John Freemuth, a frequent contributor and source for HCN, in early May. Freemuth was a public policy professor at Boise State University, where he taught classes on public lands, authored several books and mentored hundreds of students. “The kindness and willingness to teach and share his knowledge with generations of young students and journalists is something many of us at HCN will remember John for,” said Assistant Editor Carl Segerstrom. Our thoughts are also with board member Marla Painter and her husband, Mark Rudd, whose son, Paul, passed away unexpectedly from COVID-19 complications. 

Some corrections: “Public workers innovate around social distancing guidelines” (May 2020) was updated to reflect that Nogales is in Santa Cruz County. “A captive orca and a chance for our redemption” (April 2020) originally misstated the distance from her home that Tokitae, the orca, could die, what offshore killer whales eat, the area of the pool in which the whales lived and the number of southern killer whales harvested off the British Columbia and Washington coasts between 1962 and 1973. We regret the errors.

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