Visual display of the Aldo Leopold papers : 9/25/10-3 : County, State and Foreign Files

				
 
 
 
                  UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE 
                           BUREAU OF BIOLOGICAL SURVEY 
                                    WASHINGTON, D.C. 
      ADDRESS REPLY TO 
CHIEF. BUREAU OF BIOLOGICAL SURVEY 
       AND REFER TO                                   November 26, 193?,

 
 
 
 
          Professor Aldo Leopold, 
                 University of Wisconsin, 
                        Madison, Wisconsin. 
 
          Dear Professor Leopold: 
 
                 I am glad to have your letter of November 17, comnenting
fur- 
          ther on Mr. Long and the character of the work that he is carrying

          on* 
 
                 I think you can rest assured that participation by the 
          American Wildlife Institute is not exerting any undue influence
on 
          the research program of the Biological Survey in the matter of

          "short-tern, quick-turnover" projects to the neglect
of fundamental 
          scientific work. We are continuing the basic research program that

          the Biological Survey has stressed throughout its history but are,

          of course, endeavoring to speed it up and modernize it to meet

          present day conditions. 
 
                 In view of the past lack of effective work in applying re-

          sults of research to stopping the downward trend of our wildlife
re- 
          sources and with a view to effecting a complete about-face in the

          public attitude toward wildlife restoration and management, we
are 
          endeavoring to carry the research work and thinking through to
the 
          point where the results will be employed to improve practices.
This 
          is merely in line with the present day tendencies to make results

          of research useful rather than ornamental. I shall send you, as
soon 
          as we can get it mimeographed, a copy of our research program for
the 
          current fiscal year that I hope will be reassuring to you as showing

          something of the scope and direction of our research activities.

 
                I am fully in sympathy with the thought behind Long's study.

         I would like to get to know Long personally and to go over his 
         equipment and program with him on the ground and with others inter-

         ested in the work that he is doing. I am well aware that the situa-

         tion appears to be quite critical so far as the University is con-

         cerned in enabling him to carry on. From what I have been told,

         it would appear that he has some real faculty for work of this kind.

         The chief objection to his work appears to be that it has not been

         very carefully directed or supervised, that he is so largely a free

         lance worker and lacks a lot of the basic training that is needed
to 
         enable a man to properly appraise and present the results of his

         studies. 
 
  

					
				
					
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
A. L.                         - 2 -             November 26, 1937. 
 
 
 
       We have been negotiating with Director Osborne of New York 
with a view to possibly getting work of this kind started in that 
State. Just at present they seem to be somewhat stalled up there 
and are endeavoring to reallign their program with a view to taking 
advantage of the offer of cooperation that we have made them. So 
matters are hanging fire just a bit at the present time so far as 
this work is concerned and that more or less ties up the necessary 
funds. Anyway, I think we will have to cut through the "Gordian 
knot" pretty soon and figure out some way by which a real test can be

made of Long's effectiveness and ability to turn out worth while 
results along lines that I have previously suggested to you. Do you 
think it worth while for a few of us who are genuinely interested in 
this matter to get together at Ann Arbor to look the ground over, 
size matters up, and figure out a working program to take care of 
the situation? I think I shall arrange to make a trip out here ror 
this purpose at an early date. 
 
                                   Sincerely yours, 
 
 
 
 
 
                                   W. B. Bell, Chief, 
                             Division of Wildlife Research.