Daily Illuminator

May 3, 2005: The Ivorybill Lives!

Ever since I could read, I've known the story of the ivory-billed woodpecker . . . the largest North American woodpecker, and red-black-and-white monster with a wingspan of nearly three feet . . . which, as far as anyone knew, had gone extinct just a few years before I was born. So all my life I've been following purported sightings and thinking "Wouldn't it be great? Naaaah, won't happen. Gone is gone."

Except . . . it looks like there really are a few left. And clearly there are a whole lot of people who grew up, like me, wishing previous generations had been just a bit smarter. Serious protection efforts got underway LONG before the public was told. Excellent!

This really makes me very happy. Yes, we have lost a lot of our natural world, and we'll lose more, but every so often something goes right.
-- Steve Jackson

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