Tag: environment

Why Is There A Raiding Bear?

Why Is There A Raiding Bear?

My son-in-law sent through a photo of a bear raiding their rubbish bin one night, and it got me thinking.


The first thought when I saw the images was that, thankfully, everyone (including the cat and dog) was inside. Then I started to think about why the bear raided the rubbish bin in the first place. It was frequenting the neighbours’ bins as well.

It’s not the first time my daughter’s family has had visits from bears, and I’m pretty sure it won’t be the last. They live in a forest area in Northern California, so it stands to reason they live with wildlife around them.



Thankfully, only the recycling was tipped as they are very careful about what rubbish they put out.

In the grand scheme of things, humans have multiplied exceptionally quickly, and in doing so, we’ve encroached into the wildlife’s home.

We are diminishing their world by destroying forests and laying waste of the land with chemical fertilizers that have excessively polluted the environment.

We’re the only species (to my knowledge) that don’t regulate the number of offspring we produce. In the wild kingdom, the animals reduce their numbers when food is scarce. When food is plentiful, the numbers increase.

There is also a balance in nature when animals, insects and plants, are allowed their freedom to live as they should.

Humans, on the other hand, do not follow nature’s laws.

It doesn’t seem to matter to us that food is scarce. We keep breeding. We also don’t have predators to control our population, and we live a lot longer than we should because of modern medicine, so there are more of us. It doesn’t help the balance.

We are encouraged to have children. Don’t get me wrong, having children is beautiful, and I’m not suggesting we stop altogether. What we need to do is reduce the numbers. Of course, governments don’t want this simply because of capitalism. But what is it doing to our environment?

It’s bad enough that animals must try to adapt to urban sprawl encroaching. But they also have to live with fires and floods destroying their homes, all due to climate change we have exacerbated.

We have to live in harmony with nature. I certainly don’t have the answers, but I’m heartened when I see countries helping to re-establish ecosystems, such as shown recently by India. They are about to introduce Namibian cheetahs into their wildlife reserves as the Indian cheetahs went extinct 70 years ago. It is hoped that these big cats will help to balance the ecosystem. Of course, humans and their cattle will have to be kept out of the area.

Now, just think about what we could achieve with nature if we didn’t have such a massive reliance on animal agriculture.






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What Do You Put Your Energy Into?

What Do You Put Your Energy Into?

I know I say that I am “vegan”, but in actual fact, I’m more vegetarian than a vegan.

vegetarian food

But if I say that then the assumption is that I eat dairy and eggs. By definition, a vegetarian only eats plant foods, no animal products at all. Think about it – the word itself should give you a clue – vege-tarian …. vege as in vegetables – I don’t see “dairy” or “egg” anywhere in that word at all.

The problem is that the food industry has cosied up to the corporations and have indoctrinated the public into believing that a vegetarian is someone who eats plant foods, dairy products and eggs, hence the animal food industry still is able to make money from this ever-growing portion of the public.

Even the medical fraternity is on board with this, by declaring that one must have dairy in order to get the right supply of calcium – Doctors, who have never had a decent lesson in nutrition at all.

The word “vegan” is taken from the first three and last two letters of the word vegetarian. Being vegan is a lifestyle. One that is totally devoid of animal products. For example not wearing leather.

So even though I say I am vegan, my reason for eating a plant-based diet is first and foremost, the environment. Yes, I abhor animal exploitation in any form and I do choose products I know to have no animal content nor have they been tested on animals.

But, because my number one reason is the environment, I do recycle. Which means I do visit op-shops (thrift stores for my American friends), and I do purchase leather items. The reason is that leather is one of the hardest things to break down, and then, when it does, it is so full of chemicals that it contaminates the ground.

This is where I come into odds with Vegans. Vegans don’t wear leather at all as their argument is, (and I have to concede they have a point), it doesn’t matter if you have recycled it, wearing it still says to the world that you condone the use of leather.

EnvironmentWhat a quandary. But in a round-about way, this brings me to the title of this post. If you try and take on too much … it just messes with your head! Well, it does with mine. So out of all the BIG issues – environment, animal welfare, poverty, world hunger, world peace etc etc etc
I have chosen the Environment. My reason? Simple logic – if we don’t have an environment, we don’t have anything else.

I’ve just spent 5 weeks in the home at Papamoa and in that time I only needed to put the rubbish out once which was on the last day…and even then the bag was not full. The home I was in had a compost (in fact had both normal and worm farm types), had the recycle buckets for glass, plastic, paper and cans and the rest went into the council bag to be put out on the curb.

I’m also very realistic. I am fully aware that here in N.Z. our recycling efforts (paper, plastic, glass etc), are just a token gesture, most of the stuff goes to landfill or gets shipped offshore. We actually have a poor record of encouraging the recycling industry. But that is something I really don’t have control over. What I do have control of is what I can personally do for the environment.


  • I re-use plastic bags (like bread bags) as often as I can … these odd plastic bags come with me to the supermarket and I put the fruit/veggies into them rather than get a new one.
  • The bags for nuts I’ve recycled so many times it’s hard to find the space to write the number on as there are so many numbers now crossed out.
  • Naturally, I have the canvas/jute reusable bags. Lucky for me I bought several of them in America, they’re big and sturdy and go through the wash like a pro.
  • I compost where I can, use a garbage disposal unit (the one in a sink) or boil up my peelings which I freeze to use as stock/soup.

I don’t like to label myself an Environmentalist, nor a “Greenie” – I think those titles are reserved for the more wealthy who are able to go the whole hog, and the only reason I say I’m a vegan is so my food choice is understood in this warped society. I just live the best way I know how and try to “do my bit” for the environment that I am currently living in.

What do you put your energy into?

2021 Update

I now classify myself as vegan, although the environment is uppermost. My health has put me on a whole food plant-based way of eating. I do some activism with Anonymous for the Voiceless group. You can find more information about all things Vegan and Plant-based at my resource website: Gold Card Vegan






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Came across this yesterday Report Warns More Needs To Be Done To Address Climate Change   so here’s my take on it.

cd_5721ad052c8f5N.Z. will never step up and face the fact that we have a major problem with our emissions. Not only into the air but into the ground as well – a stunning example is a toxic lake in Canterbury that has already killed about 30 sheep and now it has been declared as unsafe for humans – “dangerous” was the word used. A couple of teaspoons could easily kill a small child.

Now, smack me around the head with a rotten leek if I’m wrong in saying that the cause of this algae bloom (which is not a new thing) is too much nitrogen and phosphorus – and where does that originate from? My thinking is – agriculture – and, because our agriculture has intensified over the past few years, so has the algae bloom (in more areas than just Canterbury).

Unfortunately, Canterbury is in a state of drought which has exacerbated the problem. And, blow me down, they are getting rid of water via Big Business who bottle it up and ship it off overseas.

But, getting back to climate change and this government’s approach. (you’ll get used to the fact that I digress a lot – but, hey, I always get back onto topic). And that approach is, that we don’t really have to actually DO anything, just buy carbon credits …. and dodgy ones at that! Wow, we really do have a “she’ll be right” attitude.

When Paula Bennet (our cd_5721ae8a30ca3Climate Change Minister) was asked whether the government would cancel any of the 122.2 million tonnes of these dodgy credits, she said “not ruling it out, but it’s not my focus right now”  –  translation:  “Nope not going to do a thing, and we’ll find something else to get you excited about – like the Olympics – and then it will be forgotten”

And just to finish off … Our government, who prattles on about our cd_5721af8d17614sustainable energy, has allowed Genesis Energy to extend the date of the closure of the two fossil fuel plants at Huntly, which were supposed to have been shut down in 2018 – guess what? they are now going to be staying open until 2022 – so much for making New Zealand electricity greener!

government shit
Note the clean shovel – no-one wants to start shovelling.

Oh, well, in the quagmire of politics one has to wade through the shit to find the gems…

Unfortunately for N.Z., there are no gems with this Government – only shit and we really are bogged down. Mind you, I seriously question the alternative parties and their abilities with shovels.







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About Me

About Me

Thanks for dropping by, my name is Fee O’Shea. I’m a mother and grandma, an author and an Improver. I’ve got a resource website to help peeps go plant-based, I’ve scribbled six books centred around veganism, and have helped others write and publish their own stories.
But this blog is for my thoughts, my rants, raves, reviews and things that have grabbed my attention. From politics to social media to beauty, health and the environment. Fee’s Ramblings Over Coffee is written to bring you a smile or get you thinking. Enjoy.



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