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The Little Rodent That Could…
Ben Goldfarb is a “beaver believer.” He’s author of the new book, Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter. We talk about the historical role of beavers in the ecosystems of the entire North American continent, how they were nearly wiped out, and why many communities are brining them back—and with them lusher wetlands and healthier rivers.
If you would like to buy the book, Chelsea Green Publishing is offering a discount code DTE30 at the online checkout.
2’48 how Ben became a “beaver believer”
5’21 what beavers actually do, how they store water
6’46 what this continent looked like with beavers everywhere
9’17 other species whose lives are made possible by beavers
10’17 the beaver pelt market and why it came to an end
12’53 examples of beavers’ contribution to Western ecosystems
15’45 cattle-beaver conflicts and cooperation
18’40 seeing agricultural land from a complex ecosystem perspective
19’28 Aldo Leopold thinking
20’35 crop agriculture and beavers?
23’28 beavers’ status in New Mexico
26’43 beaver coexistence with wildlife
29’28 California denial of beavers
31’51 non-lethal beaver management
34’14 killing beavers doesn’t work—they come back
35’29 Yellowstone, wolves, and beavers
39’59 grazing management and riparian areas
40’31 do beavers over-proliferate without predators?
42’37 accepting nature’s aesthetics rather than the clean lines of engineering
46’09 let the rodent do the work
48’30 also they’re so cute
48’53 what their lives and habitats are like
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Seaweed has always been used for food, fertilizer, and medicine. But now, off the coast of Maine, over-harvesting threatens rockweed and the many species that depend on it.
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Beth Robinette grew up on a ranch but didn’t expect to stay there. But then she got so interested in food system and regenerative practices that now she’s ranching, developing new business models, and teaching the ropes to the next generation of ranchers.
Lucille Contreras calls buffalo her relatives. She’s a Lipan Apache and founder of the Texas Tribal Buffalo Project, which brings together food, culture, and language around this animal to reestablish its homeland.
Kristina Long is a ship captain and an artisanal kelp farmer in British Columbia. We talk about kelp ecosystems, food, and keeping sustainable practices in a growing market.
Mark Nelson and Starrlight Augustine talk about the lessons learned from the ambitious experiment of 30 years ago, in which eight people lived in a sealed space and grew all their own food–recycling water, air, and waste.
Rachael and James Stewart saw a lack of Black and Brown farmers and ranchers–and an opportunity to serve communities with unusual meat products. So they sold a classic car and started a ranch.
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