I often think we undervalue the nature spots that are not wildernesses — the ones in and near cities and towns. Not only do these underappreciated places provide precious habitat for wildlife within the built environment, they also give humans respite from the hustle-bustle of modern life.
Jamaica Bay in New York City is one such place. At its heart is a wildlife refuge managed by the National Park Service. I have visited many times to walk the trails, view the birds (some 320 species have been sighted there) and get away from it all. When I can’t leave town, it provides the dose of nature I can’t do without.
So I was disturbed to discover that nitrogen pollution is choking the bay — and relieved to learn that a solution (or the makings of one) may be at hand. Read Saving an Urban Wild Land to learn more about this oasis in the nation’s largest city and what’s being done to protect and restore it. And please add your comments about cherished places like this where you live.