The Whisker Chronicles

Whiskers are also known as vibrissa, from the latin vibrare "to vibrate". Vibrissa are the specialized hairs on mammals and the bristlelike feathers near the mouths of many birds. Their resonant design is symbolic of the energies, good and bad, that are reverberating throughout the natural world. Every living thing is connected and, by birthright, deserves to exist.

Harapan the Hairy Rhino (And Hero!) (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

There are only about 100 Sumatran rhinos, also called Hairy rhinos, left in existence and only nine of them are cared for in captivity. Of those nine, there is only one … Continue reading

September 10, 2015 · Leave a comment

A Near Complete Commercial Trade Ban on Ivory in the United States (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Ivory Crush at Times Square (photo from the Creative Commons) It is estimated that one elephant is killed in Africa every 15 minutes, mostly conducted by militias and militants turning … Continue reading

August 6, 2015 · Leave a comment

Backyard Produce Delivers the Farmers’ Market to Your Front Door (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

No apology comes with the admission that I have an aversion to shopping, even for the necessities. Though I work from home and my car often sits in the driveway … Continue reading

July 7, 2015 · Leave a comment

White Nose Syndrome: Formidable but Not Undefeatable (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Some months ago I shared with readers information about the ecological and economical value bats provide in the widely various ecosystems in which they live. They are particularly valuable in … Continue reading

May 31, 2015 · Leave a comment

One of the World’s Largest and Oldest Sustainability Projects (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

After the difficult winter of 2015, many of us have our hearts and minds transfixed on outdoor gardening activities. In my gardening research, I came across a huge success story … Continue reading

May 5, 2015 · Leave a comment

World Water Day 2015

In 1993, the United Nations General Assembly designated World Water Day, to be celebrated annually on March 22, with the purpose of raising awareness and making a difference for people … Continue reading

March 23, 2015 · 2 Comments

Circuses as Conservationist Organizations? (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

All photos from the Creative commons. This week, Feld Entertainment announced that the thirteen elephants now traveling with the three Ringling Bros. Circus units will be retired in 2018. They … Continue reading

March 15, 2015 · 2 Comments

World Pangolin Day (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Saturday, February 21 was World Pangolin Day. On this day, pangolin advocates join together to increase awareness about these cute, special and rare mammals. Pangolin numbers in Asia are rapidly … Continue reading

March 1, 2015 · Leave a comment

Chipmunks and Carbon Storage (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Sometimes the best positive stories of the environment come from our own backyard. When you sum up the effects of millions of backyard naturalists, the positive impact is significant for … Continue reading

February 17, 2015 · Leave a comment

Orangutans and the Great Ape Conservation Fund (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Earlier this month, I wrote about Sandra, an orangutan at the Buenos Aires Zoo and a landmark ruling on animal rights. I am following up with more information about the … Continue reading

January 31, 2015 · Leave a comment

Sentient Sandra and a Landmark Ruling on Animal Rights (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Last month, amid the holiday hustle and bustle and with little fanfare, a landmark legal ruling in the world history of animal rights occurred in Argentina. The ruling concerned an … Continue reading

January 20, 2015 · Leave a comment

Owl Be Home for Christmas (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Text and Photos by Maymie Higgins Sundays are usually the only day I can afford the indulgence of sleeping until awaking naturally, instead of to the incessant beeping of a … Continue reading

November 29, 2014 · Leave a comment

That’s No Monkey! That’s Kendall! (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

Talk to any zoo keeper about great apes and you may see them cringe substantially when it comes to two topics. The first topic has to do with the discernment … Continue reading

November 15, 2014 · Leave a comment

National Bison Day (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

November 1 is National Bison Day. You can get in on the celebration through the Beards for Bison campaign by visiting http://www.beardsforbison.org/ which is organized by the Wildlife Conservation Society. … Continue reading

October 30, 2014 · Leave a comment

Sugarloaf Trail and a Dune that Proves Nature Can Be Preserved for Thousands of Years (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

All text and photographs by Maymie Higgins Last year, I wrote about a hike on Flytrap Trail which is located in a park that exists on my favorite spot on … Continue reading

October 6, 2014 · Leave a comment

Shovels and Shade Provide Healing at the Footprints of Terror (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

Recently, I visited New York and New Jersey in order to attend a family reunion. My last visit to Manhattan specifically had been in 1988, when the World Trade Center buildings still … Continue reading

September 24, 2014 · Leave a comment

The AAZK, Bowling for Rhinos and National Zoo Keeper Week (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

By Maymie Higgins If you think zoo keepers and aquarists merely prepare food, feed animals, play with animals and scoop poop (or in the case of aquarists, continuously balance the nitrogen … Continue reading

July 24, 2014 · Leave a comment

Brown Pelicans: An Endangered Species Recovery Success Story (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

Photo courtesy of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It was a warm, sunny autumn afternoon and I was out for a stroll at my favorite spot on this Earth. October … Continue reading

June 17, 2014 · Leave a comment

Native Plants and Incidental Entymology (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

While browsing for climbing vines and just for intellectual edification, I glanced over the plant information label for a plant I already have, Confederate Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides), aka Star Jasmine. … Continue reading

June 5, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Courage to Challenge Tradition Saved 130 Moon Bears (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Recently, I wrote about the good news that the United Nation’s International Court of Justice ordered a temporary halt to Japan’s annual slaughter of whales in the southern ocean after … Continue reading

May 2, 2014 · Leave a comment

Carnivorous Plants and Startled Animals (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

All text and photos by Maymie Higgins My favorite spot on Earth, Pleasure Island, includes a state park that is home to several carnivorous plants, Carolina Beach State Park. The … Continue reading

April 26, 2014 · Leave a comment

A Step Closer to the End of Commercial Whaling (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Text by Maymie Higgins All photos courtesy of Stacey Osborne and taken in the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, except for photo of Japanese whaling vessel. In 1946, under volunteer agreement … Continue reading

April 5, 2014 · 1 Comment

Who Takes Care of Orphaned, Injured or Kidnapped Wildlife? (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Photo courtesy of The Wildlife Center of Virginia Spring is the time of year when many young animals are born or hatched.  It is also a time of year when … Continue reading

March 28, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Wonderful Wonderbag (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

The Wonderbag comes vacuumed packed, with complete instructions for use and some recipes using Knorr products. Photo by Maymie Higgins What can you buy for $50?  A tank of gas?  … Continue reading

March 14, 2014 · Leave a comment

Treasures on the Fort Fisher Basin Trail (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

Text and Photographs By Maymie Higgins It was an adventure postponed far too long.  For the past twenty years, my annual travel plans have consistently included at least one long … Continue reading

February 28, 2014 · Leave a comment

How Saving Orangutans Can Lower Your Cholesterol (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

In my work as a nurse coach, I often explain to my patients the finer nuances of blood cholesterol laboratory results and how changes in nutrition can improve their numbers.  … Continue reading

February 28, 2014 · Leave a comment

Take the International Polar Bear Day Thermostat Challenge (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

Thursday, February 27 is International Polar Bear Day, celebrated annually by Polar Bears International.  On this day, everyone is invited to join in celebrating it as a day of action … Continue reading

February 27, 2014 · Leave a comment

Regift Your Christmas Tree to Wildlife (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

December 30, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Sacred Place Where Life Begins (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

In the developed world, we are accustomed to grocery stores, drive-through windows and internet access providing instant gratification and an abundance of resources at our beck and call.  Modern conveniences are fantastic … Continue reading

December 19, 2013 · Leave a comment

Another Perspective on Sea World, Orcas and Captive Animals (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

By Maymie Higgins The movie Blackfish is set to be released on DVD on Tuesday, November 12.  As much debate as the CNN airings and film festival

December 14, 2013 · 6 Comments

Champions for Cheetahs (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

When humans use analogies of strength and courage, they often conjure up images of large, predatory cats.  Lions are king of the

December 4, 2013 · Leave a comment

The American Wild Turkey (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

November 27, 2013 · Leave a comment

November is Manatee Awareness Month (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

November 19, 2013 · Leave a comment

$53 Billion of Organic Pest Control is not Spooky (Written for the Ecotone Exchange)

My street is a typical rural North Carolina subdivision with ecological features that influenced my home purchase.  The narrow road

November 19, 2013 · 1 Comment

Saving Red Wolves: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the AZA Red Wolf SSP (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

November 19, 2013 · 1 Comment

Home on the Range, Where Antelope Still Play (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

November 19, 2013 · Leave a comment

North Carolina Aquariums: Partnering with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission and the Local Community to Save Sea Turtles (Written for The Ecotone Exchange)

The moonlight reflected off the North Carolina shoreline, illuminating the way as she used her strongly developed forelimbs to drag herself several yards towards the dunes, just as her mother … Continue reading

November 19, 2013 · Leave a comment