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JIM STERBA wrote NATURE WARS. Here he is interviewed by Ian Williams. On his website Jim states... For 400 years, European explorers, traders, and settlers plundered North American wildlife and forests in an escalating rampage that culminated in the late 19th century “era of extermination.” By 1900, upwards of thirty million deer had been reduced to less than 500,000 and ten million wild turkeys were down to 30,000.

Then, in the 20th century, an incredible turnaround took place. Today, it is quite likely that more people live in closer proximity to more wild animals, birds and trees in America than anywhere on the planet at any time in history. This should be wonderful news -- unless, perhaps, you are one of 4,000 drivers who will hit a deer today, your child’s soccer field is carpeted with goose droppings, coyotes are killing your pets, the neighbor’s cat has turned your bird feeder into a fast-food outlet, wild turkeys have eaten your newly-planted seed corn, beavers have flooded your driveway, or bears are looting your garbage cans. Nature Wars tells the story of how a wildlife comeback miracle became such a mess.

The trouble was that baby boomers and their offspring had increasingly withdrawn from the natural world. They spent most of their time indoors, got anthropomorphized versions of wild nature from films and TV, and were encouraged to treat pets like children and wild animals like pets. Conflicts erupted over how to deal with it. People divided into species partisans, staged demonstrations, went to court, and raised and spent fortunes to save geese, beavers, cats, coyotes, bears, deer and other creatures from people who wanted to harm or kill them.