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Tag: animals

Don’t Steal Baby Fawns!

Helping or Hindering Wildlife: Understanding When Baby Deer Need Human Intervention

Now that it’s spring (READ: BABY SEASON!), well-meaning humans often assume that because a fawn is alone she must be an orphan, leading to numerous fawn “kidnappings” each year. In today’s episode, I share tips, guidance, stories, and advice on what to do if you see an “abandoned” baby fawn or an injured adult deer or any wild animal at all. Even if you don’t encounter these situations directly, it’s sooo helpful to know what to do so you can pass it along to your friends, family, and neighbors.

How to Talk to Strangers: A Masterclass in Conversations and Communication

Do you want to be right or do you want to be effective?

People are open. People are curious. People want to learn. They want to know. Every time I talk with strangers, that’s what I find. Every time I walk away from those conversations, that’s what I feel. Hope. Compassion. Connection. But you wouldn’t know this unless you engage, talk, listen, interact. Show up.

I’m asked so often how to talk about being vegan, how to be a voice for animals. What to say? How to say it? When to respond? How to respond? How to remain calm? How to remain joyful? How to be effective? Today is a 2-hour Masterclass in Communication and Conversation based on recent interactions I’ve had. 

I also share what I think is one of the greatest dangers of our time, and it’s related to communication, so tuck in, pour yourself a cuppa, and get comfy, because we’ve got a lot to cover in today’s episode. 

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Thank you for listening.

Best Online Vegan Cooking Classes — Plant-Based and Zero Waste

The Art of Teaching Cooking

Ever since I started teaching vegan cooking classes in 1999, I’ve loved the art behind choosing the class theme and crafting the menu, whether it’s based on:

First and foremost, of course, is the fact that everything I teach is vegan, but after that, a world of possibilities awaits! I’m inspired by different cuisines and cultures, spices and flavors, textures and techniques, but mostly what I desire is to inspire someone to get into the kitchen to create food that will nurture, nourish, and delight.

Colleen Patrick-Goudreau teaching virtual vegan cooking classes

Engaging the Senses

Cooking is a sensual experience in that all of our senses are engaged, and our experience of eating begins long before we start chewing — what a dish looks like, what the kitchen smells like, what a recipe is called, what a food sounds like during preparation or cooking, and what it feels like to touch it with our hands, our teeth, and our tongue. What memories are evoked.

I consider all of these factors when developing my recipes and crafting my classes, and the greatest gift for me is to know that one — even just one — of my recipes may become part of someone’s repertoire. That they will follow instructions I’ve carefully considered. That they will make culinary tweaks and tickles to adjust it to their liking. That they will enjoy the process as much as the result.

Online cooking classes are fun, interactive, and enjoyed globally

Join a Class in 2023

The first half of 2023 is scheduled out, and I hope you can join me. Click on each to book your spot, and enjoy a discount when you book more than one class.

𝐅𝐄𝐁𝐑𝐔𝐀𝐑𝐘: Cozy Colorful Soups ⁠(Purple Kale and White Bean Soup, Six Shades of Red Soup, Brazilian Black Bean Stew)

𝐌𝐀𝐑𝐂𝐇: Classic Northern Italian Cuisine ⁠(Saffron Risotto (Risotto alla Milanese), Homemade Gnocchi with Pesto Sauce, Polenta alla Spianatora)

𝐀𝐏𝐑𝐈𝐋: Simple Southern Italian Cuisine ⁠(Stuffed Shells with Marinara Sauce, Spaghetti with Lentil Meatballs, Eggplant Caponata)

𝐌𝐀𝐘: Homemade Tofu and Soy Milk (Save money, eliminate packaging, and increase your cooking skills!)⁠

𝐉𝐔𝐍𝐄: Plant-based Food and Wine Pairings (Join me and my partner-in-wine (i.e. my husband) for this special class in which we provide a comprehensive lesson for the best red, white, and rose wines and the plant-based foods they pair with.)⁠

If you can’t decide, remember 𝐆𝐈𝐅𝐓 𝐂𝐀𝐑𝐃𝐒 are also available!⁠

The classes are fun, interactive, and live in real-time! This means, I see you, you see all the other participants, and you see me cooking in my Oakland kitchen and answering your questions. What’s more: you receive all the recipes in advance of the class and a video recording of the class after it’s over. 

Visit JoyfulVegan.com to join a class today

What type of cooking classes or recipes are you looking for? Comment down below.

Vegan in Northern Italy {Venice, Lakes, Dolomites}

Andiamo in Italia!

After canceling all of our 2020 trips, I am very grateful to have renewed our Joyful Vegan Trips — taking all the precautions necessary (and required) for traveling during a pandemic (now endemic) and doing everything we can to neither spread nor contract Covid-19.

In June 2023, we will be running our third trip to Tuscany, which has a few spots left, and our second to Northern Italy. The latter is called Mountains and Lakes and Canals, because, well…Dolomites (Italian Alps), Lake Garda, and Venice!

We’re almost sold out, so book your spot right away! The full itinerary and the booking page are here, but here are some highlights:

  • Travel with me and David (it IS a Joyful Vegan Trip after all!)
  • Stay in a 100% vegan hotel in the mountains
  • Enjoyed guided hikes in the Italian Alps
  • Stay at (another) veg hotel at the foot of the dramatic Dolomites
  • Sip Italian wine from at a local winery
  • Stay at a beautiful countryside villa near Lake Garda
  • Explore Lake Garda by boat
  • Stay at a canal-facing palazzo in Venice
  • Explore Venice by boat, gondola, and on a guided walking tour
  • Take advantage of free time to go off on your own for some hiking and biking in the mountains and countryside
  • Stroll through romantic Verona on a guided walking tour
  • Enjoy a cooking demo with me!

Civic Engagement for Animals

The Power of Local Political Activism

Join me today in conversation with Tim Anderson, animal advocate, co-founder and board member of the East Bay Animal PAC, and engaged citizen.

We met over a decade ago working to stop backyard animal slaughter from becoming legal in our city, and as a result, he became one of my closest friends — and biggest inspirations.  

In today’s episode, Tim

  • shares ideas for effective engagement with elected officials
  • talks about the power of local civic engagement to promote compassionate policies
  • offers numerous ways to get involved locally on behalf of animals — finding friendships and our own authentic voice along the way.

Citizen Tim

Tim has been involved in grassroots organizing for 25 years. His efforts include work on the successful senatorial campaign for Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone, and the 2008 presidential election of Barack Obama. Locally, he’s worked on various Oakland mayoral and city council elections, as well as city-wide ballot initiatives. 

He used to volunteer as a photographer at the Oakland Animal Shelter, where he adopted his adorable dog, Rex. And among many other things, he is responsible for a weekly clean-up group in his neighborhood, which came out of neighbors joining this guy who was outside every week picking up garbage.

Tim also spoke at my Compassion in Action conferences two years in a row, volunteered with me on numerous occasions when I needed help tabling at speaking events, and was a long-time supporter of my Food for Thought podcast.

FUN FACT

Tim and I have spent a lot of time at Farm Sanctuary together, and I’m very lucky to have been on the receiving end of his photography skills. If you visited the page for the podcast episode The Burden of Burros and the Plight of Donkeys, you’ll see many photos of me with my donkey friends. Tim took many of those photos (see below), along with hundreds of others of me and other animals.

Yeah, he’s amazing.

Good News for Animals and Nature (2022)

10 Reasons to be Hopeful for Animals and Nature

As another year comes to a close, I wanted to give you 10 reasons to be hopeful for animals and nature by focusing on some good news from 2022. Depending on what you focus on, you can find many reasons for despair or many reasons for hope, and I’m here to you some of the latter. (You can also listen to the Food for Thought podcast on the same topic.)

Make no mistake, however: optimism is not complacency.

Acknowledging victories provides an opportunity not only for well-deserved celebrations, but also for examining what tactics are working and what projects we may want to get involved in or support.

As I mention in my KQED Radio Editorial, I Am an Animal Advocate and I Have Hope,

My hope is not complacent; it’s provisional. It’s the difference between wanting things to change and taking action to facilitate that change.

And so, here are 10 Reasons to be hopeful for animals and nature — just from 2022 alone!

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: dogs and cats have legal protection in spain

1. Companion animals are no longer considered inanimate objects under Spanish law.

While it might be obvious to you and me that animals are sentient beings, this is not reflected in civil or criminal law in most places. While “livestock” animals are still considered property in many cities and countries throughout the world, more and more, dogs and cats are being given legal status that protects them in both criminal and civil cases. With the passage of this law in Spain, the welfare of dogs and cats must be considered in divorce proceedings, for example. They will no longer be able to be seized, abandoned, or separated from one of their human guardians in the case of a divorce or separation, without their wellbeing and welfare being taken into account.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: In Wyoming, miles of fencing are being removed to help wildlife migrate.

2. In Wyoming, miles of fencing are being removed to help wildlife migrate.

Scientists conservatively estimate that more than 600,000 miles of fences crisscross the American West, hindering wild animals from moving around freely and safely. In some cases, the fences are simply left-over remnants that were erected decades ago and no longer serving any purpose. In others, they were constructed with little thought about their impact on other species.

Today, through an emerging field of research known as fence ecology, land managers and conservation groups in the United States are increasingly aware of how fences can harm wild animals. And they are beginning to push for fence removal or replacement as a solution that many otherwise-at-odds constituents can get behind. In Wyoming, the Absaroka Fence Initiative — a public-private partnership between willing landowners and land managers — sees volunteers, landowners, and federal agencies working together to help wildlife by removing miles and miles of fencing.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: beavers are now protected in England

3. 400 years after they were hunted to extinction, beavers are now a protected species in England.

As of October 1st, 2022, it is illegal to deliberately capture, injure, kill or otherwise disturb the charismatic rodents, who have reclaimed a foothold in their native land in recent years. Beavers — known as “nature’s engineers” because of their industrious dam-building skills — create wetlands, which are an important habitat for many plants and animals. In doing so, they also prevent flooding and drought-related problems such as wildfires by keeping water in the land. While new incoming governments can always change this law, this is welcome news for now.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: the largest wildlife crossing in the United States breaks ground.

4. The largest wildlife crossing in the United States breaks ground.

In April 2022, construction began for a long-awaited a $90-million wildlife crossing above the US-101 Freeway in Agoura Hills in southern California. This is the result of a 20-year campaign to create an easier path of travel for mountain lions, foxes, and other wildlife to cross 10 lanes of Highway 101 without encountering a single car.

The efforts to save both animals and people have led to a proliferation of road crossings for animals along traditional migration routes and other crucial locations around the world. The practice originated in France in the 1950s and quickly spread to the Netherlands, which now is home of the world’s longest wildlife bridge at .5 miles (.8 km). According to the Federal Highway Administration, about 300,000 wildlife collisions happen on U.S. roadways each year, and those are just estimates. Many smaller animal deaths never get reported. This new bridge will save thousands of lives.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: Australia's Great Barrier Reef shows signs of coral recovery

5. Australia’s Great Barrier Reef shows the best signs of coral recovery in 36 years.

Two-thirds of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia recorded the highest amount of coral cover in nearly four decades. While the reef is still vulnerable to climate change and mass bleaching, these latest results demonstrate the Reef can still recover in periods free of intense disturbances. The Great Barrier Reef has suffered from widespread and severe bleaching because of rising ocean temperatures. “What we’re seeing,” said Dr Paul Hardisty of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, “is that the Great Barrier Reef is still a resilient system. It still maintains that ability to recover from disturbances.”

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: 200 national agree to promote biodiversity

6. 200 nations agree to a landmark deal to promote biodiversity and save species from extinction.

The UN biodiversity conference, known as COP15, has been considered the last chance for nature’s recovery. One of the most significant parts of the pact is an agreement to protect 30 per cent of nature by 2030. This ‘30×30’ target is one of the biggest land and ocean conservation commitments in history. The deal includes a pledge to conservation in the developing world and protections for Indigenous peoples’ rights. Governments also agreed to take urgent action on preventing the extinction of species at threat from human activity and promote their recovery.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: the largest climate legislation in the U.S. was signed into law

7. The largest U.S. climate legislation in history was signed into law.

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) commits $370 billion to combat climate change. Aimed at slashing greenhouse gas emissions to around 40% by 2030 and curbing consumer energy costs at the same time, it is the largest federal response to climate change in history and will set the course for substantial changes in how the nation produces energy over the next decade.

Major provisions include major new or expanded funding to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, encouraging a domestic supply chain for electric vehicles and energy storage systems, promoting agricultural practices that capture carbon dioxide, expanding offshore production of energy (both fossil and wind), and providing federal support for energy efficiency. The IRA also includes dozens of new and extended tax credits for renewable energy, electric vehicles, electric transmission, and related industries.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: wolves and bears are making a recovery in Europe

8. In Europe, wolves, brown bears, and white-tailed eagles are making a dramatic recovery.

Some of the top predators are thriving in Europe, according to a major new report commissioned by Rewilding Europe, a charity working to restore wild spaces across the continent. Effective legal protection, habitat restoration, and wildlife reintroductions are all helping to drive species recovery. Among the top predators, the grey wolf is making the strongest recovery. Once hunted to near extinction, 17,000 wolves are now found right across Europe.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: bees are no longer declining in the netherlands

9. The urban bee population is no longer declining in The Netherlands thanks to a pollinator strategy.

The native wild bee population in the Netherlands has been declining since the 1940s, but recognizing the crucial role played by wild bees in the pollination of food crops, the government announced a national pollinator strategy in 2018. The strategy included 70 initiatives aimed at creating more nesting sites for bees and strengthening their food supply. Amsterdam has been working on various bee-friendly initiatives that include putting up “bee hotels,” which are a collection of hollow plant stems or thin bamboo that provide space for bees to nest. All of the efforts are working. The latest count of native bees since the project began showed no population decline.

10 reasons to be hopeful for animals: a landmark bill will ban the shark fin trade in the United States.

10. A landmark bill will ban the shark fin trade in the United States.

Before the U.S. Senate passed this legislation, 14 states and three U.S. territories had already banned the sale and possession of shark fins. The new bill will prohibit the fin trade across the entire U.S. It’s estimated that fins from as many as 73 million sharks annually end up in the global market. This historic bill bans the buying and selling of shark fins in the United States, thereby removing our country from the global shark fin trade. Shark fins are mainly in demand for shark fin soup, a luxury dish popular in China, Hong Kong and many other places across Asia.

This forthcoming ban follows other measures to protect sharks, including the listing of many shark species on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and a ban on gear that is used to target sharks in the Pacific.

What did I miss? What are your reasons to be hopeful for animals and nature from 2022 or in general? Share your stories of hope with me in the comments below!

Food Waste and Animals

Thanks for listening to my NPR commentary about how the food waste we generate affects not just our wallets but the animals we attract to it. Listen below, on KQED’s website, read the transcript below, and please share with friends and family. It’s a perspective that can change the world for animals. 

You’ve heard it before: of the edible food Americans buy and bring home, about 40% gets thrown in the garbage. That translates to between $1,300 and $2,200 per household per year. When we stop treating food as garbage, the benefits are manifold — most obviously: saving money. But removing food scraps from our garbage cans is also a benefit to our relationship with the natural world — especially wildlife.

The more food we throw away, the more wild animals come to rely on that food in our trash cans, leading to human-wildlife encounters that can be inconvenient and costly for us and dangerous — often fatal — for them.

Perceiving opportunistic visitors — from the largest bears to the smallest rodents — as a nuisance often ends badly for them, but rather than changing our behavior and removing the tasty buffets that lure them in the first place, we demonize the raccoons, opossums, mice, and rats who rummage through our garbage cans and pay companies to gas, poison, or glue-trap them.

Sadly, this isn’t the only price animals pay for our wastefulness. High mortality rates by vehicle collisions and consumption of toxic non-digestibles are also linked with animals’ attraction to our garbage.
Reducing food waste is essential and do-able, especially since we know the main causes of it in our homes:

  • Buying more food than we need
  • Being unwilling to consume leftovers
  • Improperly storing food
  • And misunderstanding the meaning of “sell-by dates.”

By seeing the food in our refrigerators as valuable rather than disposable means taking responsibility and being resourceful. There’s a reason humans have been canning, pickling, and fermenting foods for hundreds of years. But if that feels too advanced…at least consider:

  • Making a cobbler out of tired-looking fruit
  • Making stock from veggie scraps
  • Freezing chopped herbs before they wilt
    and so much more…

By literally turning lemons into lemonade, we save money, we save resources, and we save animals.

With a Perspective, I’m Colleen Patrick-Goudreau.

Forbidden Meat: Fasting and Abstinence During Advent

Abstaining from meat, dairy, and eggs during religious holidays has been a tradition for centuries in many religions. In Christianity, for example, during Lent (40 days prior to Easter) and Advent (40 days prior to Christmas), parishioners were forbidden to consume animal flesh as well as as dairy, cheese, and eggs. 

In today’s episode, we explore this history and demonstrate that not eating animal products was more common than not, especially during the period of contemplation and contrition leading up to the holy days of Easter and Christmas. I share my own experience growing up Catholic, my memories of Fish Fridays, and the meaning of a common English word whose origins are steeped in religious abstinence.