- Hunting is Conservation
I’ve made a commitment to hunting as a cultural tradition and connection to ancestry, stewardship of local land, and wild food advocacy. Conservation organizations I am invested in work towards sustaining habitat for wildlife. Through volunteering as a Hunter Education Instructor, I am enriched by participation in sharing safe, and ethical mentoring to the public regarding all aspects of hunting; from the safe handling of firearms and archery equipment, to the ethics of hunting and its major role in conserving public land for wildlife habitat and ecological restoration. Getting people outside and engaged with nature is a broad and rich definition. The lineage of hunting in human evolution remains alive today as a path of direct participation in conservation stewardship.
- Cultivating Habitat Activates Abundance
By honing in on the physical land through observation over several seasons, the very earth here at Leafhopper Farm was sculpted and reformed around natural topography to enhance basic life systems. Water is now directed to targeted fertile spaces on the land such as swales and ponds, which invite lasting places of moisture through the dryer summer months. After a full year of the altered physical geography, a lasting pond remains full through 3 months of little to no rain and is now refilling rapidly as fall rains begin. A Great Blue Heron visits the pond to hunt the bullfrogs (the bird does a great job, we have stopped seeing them recently). Native frogs such as The Pacific Green Tree Frog and The Red Legged Frog have both been sighted more regularly on the land. A crop of tadpoles and pollywogs were logged this last spring, marking the pond and it’s contributing catchment systems supporting the establishment of new nurseries for indicator species at Leafhopper Farm.
- Local Participation: Diversity=Enrichment
Making time for civic engagement creates local connection and shared reliance through investment of time and economic interest. Drawing in that participation through the fulfillment of basic needs sourced locally keeps hard earned cash close to home and spent with intension on needs rather than wants. The Duvall Farmer’s Market has been the perfect cross section of local economics. This micro-economy fosters reliance and support amongst neighbors. For the majority of the residence of Duvall, farming is not an option, but acquiring sustenance through local growers and producers, stimulates agricultural opportunity, and invests in food security for future generations.Leafhopper Farm has begun working towards supporting The Duvall Farmer’s Market by producing for a shared booth next year. Agricultural production will be ramping up, supporting the continued growth of habitat around the land in plant, animal, and human forms. In partnering with other neighbors who steward land locally, our combined efforts will produce enough viable product from our lands in there early stages of restoration and reinvigoration, to contribute directly to our local economy. This participation will engage us in our community, and encourage others to produce, even, and especially in small amounts, rather than none at all. In return, those small amounts add up, lightening our demand on outside environments to support us, and activating the engagement of local fertility.