I was recently reading someone's blog (and which one it was totally escapes me - my apologies, if that person is among my readers!) in which the person posted about a bus driver who had stopped the bus for a frog on the road, got out, moved the frog to safety, and then been fired for their act of compassion. Public protest over the firing got her job back for her.
I used the story in one of my classes, in which I was discussing anthropocentrism - the attitude held by many humans that we are better than and more valuable than all other living things. We humans have a hierarchy of value, when it comes to life, and I am betting that if that bus driver had stopped for a human standing frozen in fear on the road, and helped that human to safety, there would have been no firing.
Biodiversity is a necessary part of environmental sustainability, and therefore a necessary ingredient for our own continued existence as a species. Why is that so difficult for people to understand?
(That said, I have already confessed in another post that I have a hard time giving maggots and slugs and moths the same value I do dogs and cats and pigs and people. Mea culpa.)
Anyway, back to the story of the frog. I read the story of the bus driver one evening, when the air was full of the sounds of frogs singing their evensong by the pond next door. Even with doors and windows closed, I hear them constantly. Open the back door, and I am awed by the full impact of amphibian orchestration, grandioso.
While there's nothing to see on this video, you will hear their song - the never ending chirping (minus the clack, clack, clack in the background which is some weird idiosyncratic feature of my camera - sounds like an old fashioned typewriter!) that I hear from dusk to dawn.
Last night, there was a new addition to the ensemble - a baritone singing solo from underneath the house! Somehow, what sounded like a large bullfrog had made his way into the dirt crawlspace, possible through the shallow watery channel which used to feed the well in the days when the house was built on top of its water source. Today I opened the cellar door to show him a route out, and tonight when he sings I hope it will be with the symphony outside.