Monday Blog Blog: Buzztail Blog Shakes And Makes A Difference

March 14th, 2011 by David Leland Hyde Leave a reply »

California Quarter Image, Reverse Side, Courtesy Wikimedia Commons, 2005. First seen on PJ Finn's Buzztail Blog.

What is Monday Blog Blog? See the blog post, “Monday Blog Blog Celebration.”

NEW! Special Update: Buzztail Blog Has Added A New Writer

Greg Russell, author of the photo blog, Alpenglow Images, will lend his blog post writing skills to help PJ Finn develop Buzztail Blog

Check out Greg Russell’s first Buzztail blog post, “Learning To Stand, Part I.”

What is Conservation Anyway?

Whether we are called conservationists, environmentalists, activists or some other term, a growing number of people both breathe air, drink water and want to maintain the quality of both for future generations. There are a certain faction of people in the United States who swallow the marketing and spin dished at them by big oil and big coal backed media. The spin says that we can continue to take old decayed organic material that we call oil and coal from deep in the earth, run it through refineries, machines and other hot devices, then spew it into the atmosphere indefinitely without any negative consequences. In my opinion, the idea that any negative consequences will be considered a theory until they have proven true, is ludicrous and nothing short of mass-suicide. The people swallowing and perpetuating the propaganda apparently have never ventured out into nature to observe the obvious signs of change all around us in every ecosystem.

Can Landscape Photography And Environmentalism Combine Well?

Meanwhile some photographers do not recognize the connection between landscape photography and the need to help preserve the land. Some photographers have also forgotten that landscape photography helped birth conservation in the 1800s. Nonetheless, many landscape photographers are aware of the tradition they are part of and are also rediscovering that photographs are one of the best tools available for making a difference. Because Global Warming has become so politicized and controversial, as have many other conservation and environmental issues, or for other good reasons, some photographers who are also great activists, choose to keep their photography and conservation efforts separate. My father pioneer landscape photographer Philip Hyde set himself apart by combining conservation and photography way before it was cool, hip and groovy to do so, but many other landscape photographers of note including Ansel Adams and Eliot Porter chose to separate the two endeavors to varying degrees. For more discussion on whether or not to mix conservation and photography see the blog post and comments on, “Wallace Stegner: The Wilderness Idea.”

PJ Finn, Photomontana Blog and Buzztail Blog

One photographer who is also an environmentalist is Paul Johnson, online a.k.a. PJ Finn. PJ Finn runs an insightful photography blog called Photo Montana, as well as a blog for activism, wilderness and environmental news called Buzztail Blog, which incidentally came before the photoblog. Buzztail refers to the noise a rattlesnake makes with its tail as a metaphor for what conservationists and environmentalists do when they report on and draw attention to various environmental issues. For more information about PJ Finn see his bio and the previous Landscape Photography Blogger blog post, “Photomontana Takes On Sacred Cows,” which recommends PJ Finn’s blogging on both blogs. Lately PJ Finn, after a move to Southern California, has rededicated himself to building up his Buzztail blog. Please lend PJ Finn a hand over there, stop by, make a comment, link to his blogs and otherwise offer up a big thanks to him for all of the good work he does.



  1. pj says:

    Thanks much for the post David. I guess I’ll have to get busy!

    I’ll point out to your readers that I’m always on the lookout for material to post about. Any news about threats to our wild areas, or about any actions being taken to oppose such threats, or any related items of interest are always welcome. I can’t keep up with everything going on. Feel free to pass along any such items. Thanks.


  2. Hi PJ, thank you for your efforts and for the alert. I am usually quite diligent about following most environmental campaigns, but it seems to me that you keep up with what is going on much better than I do. Nonetheless, your point is well taken that you can’t keep up with everything. I would add that if you can’t do so, few of the rest of us can. Thus, it is that much more important that people pool knowledge about the environmental issues of which they are aware. I imagine readers here may have suggestions not only of various conservation concerns that need to be addressed, but also of environmental campaigns that they feel strongly about. Some nature photographers may be working on projects and could let you know about what they are doing that may prove appropriate material for you.

  3. Greg Russell says:

    Very nice post here, David. All of PJ’s blogs are great, and while I’m more active on his photography blog, I still enjoy swinging into Buzztail now and then.

    I’m sure it’ll stay great, with a renewed life and “focus” on southern California/Southwest.

  4. I have been enjoying PJ’s posts from California. I’m excited to see what comes from this new adventure.


  5. I agree, Sharon. PJ has me intrigued to follow his progress and to see what happens next with him in Southern California.

  6. Derrick says:

    Great choice for your blog blog! I’ve really been enjoying PJ’s journey through California and his Saturday musings are always good for getting the brain functioning on the weekend.

  7. Thank you, Derrick. PJ’s writing sneaks up on you. After reading his observations and insights for a while you get hooked.

  8. pj says:

    Thanks for the update David. I’m sure Greg will be a fine addition to buzztail. I look forward to what he has to offer.

  9. Hi PJ, I appreciate you giving me the heads up about adding Greg Russell to your team. He will indeed be a significant asset to Buzztail blog.

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