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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Saturday, May 11, 2013

The man who claims to have seen an Ivory Billed Woodpecker(in the Bayou De View in Arkansas in 2004) is now seeking to rediscover the Ivory billed cousin, the Imperial Woodpecker, the largest woodpecker to grace the planet in modern times, now deemed extinct in it's historical Mexico forest habitat..................Gallagher has penned IMPERIAL DREAMS. about his quest to find the bird in Mexico's Sierra Madre................Seems like a read many of you would enjoy

She's there in a 1957-era
 ornithologist's film, tossing
her springy curled crest,
whacking away at scaly
pine bark and hitching
vigorously up a tree. She
 is an imperial woodpecker,
 the largest woodpecker who
 ever lived: almost 2 feet tall;
jet black and snow white, with
 a staring doll's eye, a Kewpie
 crest and an oversize bone-colored
 bill, stuck like an awl in a
 surprised-looking face. And she
 is, sadly, one of the last of her kind:
 No one has spotted an imperial
woodpecker in the half-century
since the film was made.

Even though Tim Gallagher
 reported seeing an ivory-billed
 woodpecker, the imperial
woodpecker's northern cousin,
 fly across Arkansas's Bayou
 De View in 2004 (and wrote
 a 2006 book, "The Grail Bird,"
 about his quest), you're aware
 from the get-go that his hunt
 for the imperial woodpecker
 in Mexico won't be a saga of
 discovery. There won't be a
photo of an oversize, pied
woodpecker on the book's
cover, just an artist's rendering.
 Instead, "Imperial Dreams" is
more along the lines of Peter
 Matthiessen's "The Snow
 Leopard." It's yearning, put
into words and wistfully unrequited.

Imperial Dreams

By Tim Gallagher 
Atria, 277 pages, $26
Julie Zickfoose
IF Our reviewer's rendering of the
imperial woodpecker.

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