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letters | protecting plovers on the beach

Respect vulnerable shorebird; don’t give in to sprawl of humanity

Pat Greenhouse photos/Globe Staff/File 2013

Lawrence Harmon’s “Move over, plover; beach is for people” (Op-ed, June 7) was cruel. Assuming that people would be delighted to watch these rare birds in their brief time on our beaches, I was stunned by his position. Better to teach people why they should respect the fenced-off areas on Revere Beach.

Harmon argues that plover protection is preventing access to the entire beach. He even supports a misguided plan to allow “incidental taking,” which includes moving nests. Adults should be able to postpone gratification. Plover nesting season is brief; beach season is long.

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Revere Beach, too, is long. There is plenty of space for people to stroll, swim, and relax. Meanwhile, respect for the nesting area is vital, as the birds are well camouflaged and the tiny babies are vulnerable.

Would Harmon have us repeal the Endangered Species Act and the Migratory Bird Treaty? For him, beaches are solely for people. How inconvenient that other species need them for survival.

Instead of railing against the plover program, consider it a treat to be able to see such a rare creature. Once it leaves, you have the rest of the summer to gaze at people sprawled on towels, hear their blaring boomboxes, and watch the trash they leave behind. I prefer the plovers.

Carolyn Bishop


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