• Mary Anderson


By Mary Anderson

I’m thrilled. My van windshield is full of dead bugs.

Over the last number of years I have noticed I seldom needed to clean my windshield of dead bugs. It has concerned me. I know that many cities spray to kill black flies and mosquitoes. Farmers spray insecticides. And undisturbed natural habitats are on the decline. All of these factors contribute to a decrease in insects.

Some people call me crazy when I talk like this. But what do they think the fish and frogs and birds eat? Insects! It seems to me that the decrease in insects has paralleled the decrease in birds I see each spring.

I am determined to remember this when I am on the trail. There will be sections where I expect to be in a constant battle with blood sucking insects. It will be unpleasant to say the least. But rather than cursing the bugs I am going to try to be grateful that there is so much food for the insect-eating wildlife.


Mary Anderson is writing a book about her trek along the 3,000-mile Continental Divide Trail, a journey of healing that she began in her sixties. Mary hiked the southern half of the trail in 2020 and is undertaking the northern half in 2021. Read more of Mary's story.

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