Where, Indeed, Are the Butterflies

Insects collecting nectar unintentionally tran...
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I have it on good authority (a talk show I heard or imagined I heard) that butterflies, who contribute an estimated 18.6 billion dollars in services by their pollination and another buck-fifty by their aesthetic contributions are being intentionally and selectively annihilated by a government program that wants our gardens to fail so they can force us into WalMart Superstores to buy government-subsidized styrofoam tomatoes pollinated by robot insects that only they can provide. Add some other scary stuff. Then tell your neighbors.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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