OBITUARIES

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, April 1997:

R. Reeves co-edited the Sierra Club
Handbook of Whales and Dolphins (1983 and
updates), died January 25 of lymphoma.
Formerly senior research biologist for the
Hubbs Marine Research Institute,
Leatherwood spent his last years with the
Ocean Park Conservation Foundation in Hong
Kong, as representative of the Cetacean
Specialist Group within the International
Union for the Conservation of Nature. His
special project was seeking the survival of the
baiji, or Chinese river dolphin. “There are no
truly reliable numbers on the size of baiji populations,”
Leatherwood warned in November
1995. “Published estimates indicate a decline
from 400 or so in the late 1970s, to 300 or so
in the mid-1980s, to 120 or so in 1993.


However, the first carefully planned and
coordinated survey of the species’ entire
range, about 1,200 miles, from Shanghai to
Yichang, employing a large vessel in midchannel
and one smaller vessel along each
shore, resulted in sightings of only five baiji.
Even accounting for animals missed, it is difficult
to conclude that the population is more
than a few dozen animals. This is not being
taken passively,” Leatherwood continued.
“An eleventh hour effort is underway to capture
as many of the remaining dolphins as
possible and move them into Shi Shou
Seminatural Reserve, a 24-square-mile
oxbow of the Yangtze. There are no guarantees,
but we are trying.” The one dolphin at
the reserve now is a male, who has been there
for 18 years. In December 1995, after three
years of trying, the baiji recovery team captured
a second dolphin, a female––but on
June 23, 1996, she drowned in one of the
nets that encloses the protected site. Looming
over the whole question of baiji survival,
meanwhile, is the impending construction of
the Three Gorges Dam across the upper
Yangtse, one of biggest engineering projects
ever undertaken, with almost incalculable
potential impact. “The line from Chinese scientists
in 1987-1992,” Leatherwood told
ANIMAL PEOPLE, “was that it would
damage 25% of the habitat and affect 10% to
30% of the population. Then, after the official
resumption of construction and a series of
official government meetings to evaluate the
evidence, all Chinese scientists magically
shifted to the view that the dam is no problem.”
One way or another,” Leatherwood
said, “The Yangtse has been sacrificed to
development. It is only a matter of time
before the baiji, the most visible symbol of
loss, disappears from the fetid flow. Who
knows what else will spin down the vortex?”

Paul E. Tsongas, 55, former U.S.
Senator from Massachusetts and Democratic
presidential candidate in the 1992 primaries,
died January 18 of cancer. Forced out of the
1992 presidential race by questions about his
health, Tsongas left the Senate in 1984 during
a battle with another form of cancer. As a
lobbyist, Tsongas represented the
Massachusetts SPCA, the Humane Society of
the U.S, and the Sierra Club. “I think I can
speak for research animals because I’ve been
one for the past three years,” Tsongas reportedly
said at one point. “Even when the animals
are informed about the procedure, and
have given their consent, the animals are
scared.” Because of Tsongas’ work on biomedical
research issues, the Illinois Medical
Society asked the medical and research professions
to oppose his presidential candidacy.

Sue Royal, executive director of
the White Mountain Humane Society in
Pinetop, Arizona, died in December.

Judi Bari, 47, leader of the 1990
Earth First! “Redwood Summer” protests,
died March 2 of cancer at her cabin in Willits,
California. Born in Balitmore, Bari left studies
at the University of Maryland circa 1969
to dedicate heself to anti-Vietnam War
protest. Moving into labor organizing, she
led a successful wildcat strike at a U.S. Postal
Service bulk mail facility but failed in an
attempt to unionize grocery store clerks.
Relocating to northern California in 1979,
Bari became a carpenter––and became locally
controversial for her pro-choice position on
abortion. She joined Earth First! in 1987,
upon learning the age of the tree that furnished
some of the redwood siding she was
installing on a house. Bari emerged as voice
of the strongest faction within Earth First!
after cofounder Dave Foreman was arrested in
1989 and eventually convicted on a plea bargain
for conspiracy in connction with a plot
apparently hatched chiefly by two FBI undercover
operatives to blow up electrical transmission
lines in rural Arizona. Under
Foreman, formerly a mainstream hunter/conservationist,
Earth First! was often perceived
as tree-huggers opposing loggers. Bari, said
longtime friend Anna Marie Stenberg, “made
the connection between the exploitation of the
forests and the exploitation of the workers.”
Convincing the California chapter of Earth
First! to renounce tree-spiking, “She was successful
in driving a wedge between the companies
and the workers,” Georgia-Pacific
spokesperson Dave Odgers acknowledged in
1990. However, on May 24, 1990, as Bari
and musician/activist Darryl Cherney drove
through Oakland, California, on their way to
Santa Cruz to drum up support for “Redwood
Summer,” a nail bomb detonated under the
seat of Bari’s car. Cherney escaped with
minor injuries, but a shattered pelvis and
lower back injuries left Bari permanently disabled.
Although no evidence ever linked Bari
and Cherney to the bomb, both were arrested
within hours for allegedly possessing it. The
charges were later dropped. Local media and
private investigators eventually named three
other potential suspects, who allegedly had
histories of having threatened Bari, but no
other arrests were made. A year later, Bari
and Cherney sued the FBI for allegedly
destroying evidence, misrepresenting the
facts of the case to media, ignoring the death
threats issued against Bari, and withholding
evidence from the investigators representing
Bari and Cherney. The case is still pending.
Despite her injuries, Bari remained among
the most visible Earth First! leaders until her
death, as Foreman resigned in August 1990.
A lifelong Republican, Foreman told media
he was uncomfortable with Bari’s “classstruggle,
left/counterculture approach,” and
returned to mainstream lobbying.

Floy Mae Seales, wife of John
Seales, longtime animal services director for
Hot Springs, Arkansas, died February 9 of
cancer. “In March 1978,” John Seales
recalled, “I expressed to my wife that I had
just about had it up to my neck with the job,”
which he undertook after founding the first
animal shelter in Vietnam some years earlier.
“‘This is the dirtiest job I have ever done,’ I
said. ‘More complaints than I have ever
heard, and the most thankless job in the
world.’ She looked at me and made a very
soft statement: ‘Why don’t you try to make a
difference?’ That was the turning point of my
career. Because of my wife, I was able to see
things in a more positive way. As I look
around my spacious office, and walk through
our new modern animal shelter, which they
named after me, I owe it to Floy Mae.”

Daniel Pratt Mannix, 85, died
January 29 in Malvern, Pennsylvania.
Keeping a menagerie as a teenager that
included porcupines, hawks, and vultures,
Mannix became a traveling carnival performer
after graduating from the University of
Pennsylvania, and went on to careers as a
professional hunter and collector of wildlife
for zoos and circuses, before writing more
than two dozen books, including Backyard
Zoo, All Creatures Great And Small (not to
be confused with the James Herriot book of
the same title), Tales of the African Frontier,
and as his views on hunting shifted, The Fox
And The Hound, which became a strongly
anti-hunting 1981 Walt Disney animated film.

Edith Hurd, 86, died January 27
in Walnut Creek, California. Hurd was
author/illustrator of more than 50 books for
children, often collaborating with her late
husband Clement, who died in 1988.
Among her many animal-related titles were
The Blue Heron Tree, The Mother Whale,
and The Mother Deer.

Vero C. Wynne-Edwards, 90,
died January 5 in Banchory, Scotland.
Wynne-Edwards revolutionized human understanding
of evolution with his 1962 book
Animal Dispersion in Relation to Social
Behavior, which argued that instead of operating
solely through individual survival of the
fittest, evolution also occurs as result of the
self-regulatory mechanisms of whole species,
manifested in territoriality, dominance hierarchies,
and allocation of resources. WynneEdwards
postulated that evolution often
favors not the animal best able to survive
alone, but rather the animal best adapted to
survive within the social context of the kind.
A 1927 graduate of the New College at
Oxford, Wynne-Edwards taught zoology at
McGill University in Montreal, 1930-1946,
formulating his then-controversial theories
while studying how seabird populations disperse
at sea. He then served as Regius
Professor of Natural History at Aberdeen
University in Scotland, 1946-1974. WynneEdwards
was elected to the Royal Society in
1970, received the Royal Society’s Neill
Prize in 1973, and capped his career by
receiving the Frink Medal of the Zoological
Society of London in 1980.

Joseph Kastner, 89, died
February 6 at his home in Grandview-onHudson,
New York. A writer and editor for
Life magazine, 1936-1969, Kastner authored
A Species of Eternity, a history of early North
American nature study which was nominated
for the 1977 National Book Award; A World
of Watchers, a 1987 history of birdwatching
in America; and the text for two anthologies
of visual material from the New York Public
Library collection, The Bird Illustrated,
1550-1900 (1989) and The Animal Illustrated,
1550-1900 (1991).

Beryl Reed, 76, who died in
October 1996, left her cottage on the Thames
and about $5,000 to fellow actor Paul Strike,
48, the London Times disclosed on February
4––on condition that he care for the six survivors
among her onetime colony of 13 cats.
Reed described them in The Cat’s Whiskers,
a volume of her memoirs. “I arranged for her
to get one of her cats from a Chinese restaurant
because she didn’t think he was happy.
The others were strays who had been neglected
or thrown out on the street and ended up at
animal shelters,” Strike said. Neighbor
Edward Baty described Strike as “stupid about
cats––he just loves them.”

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