We Wrote a Wildlife and Bushcraft Survival Guide!

What do you do if see a black bear in the woods? Do you climb a tree or play dead? Is your response different if it’s a grizzly bear attack? What about surviving a wild boar attack or a cougar? We answer all these questions in our new book – Mother Nature is Not Trying to Kill You.

Why We Wrote this Wildlife Guide Book

The movie poster of Jaws depicts a girl swimming at the surface of the ocean, with a great white shark lurking below. Talk about a terrible image to take with you every time you step foot into the water! 

As a kid, it was forever burned into my mind. Even in the pool, I imagined the sharks coming from the vents! I had a  recurring nightmare about it. Fortunately, I learned that Jaws was a fictional story. I was told a counter-story – sharks don’t eat people. 

Now a marine biologist, I still want to tell myself that sharks don’t eat people, but the fact of the matter is that… well, sometimes they do. But it doesn’t mean we all have to be helpless floating meat-balls. 

If you know a little bit about the behavior of many of the potentially dangerous things that live in our world, maybe you’ll be less scared of exploring on your own. Maybe you’ll be safer. Maybe that will make you the master of your domain. Who knows! Maybe your knowledge will grow into an admiration and love that leads to protecting the wild places that harbor those amazing creatures. 

Here is what this book isn’t

This isn’t a book about how scary and terrifying all these animals are. That does nothing but scare you with the sensational. I won’t take the opposite approach either and say that we humans are evil doers in every wildlife incident. It’s not about sharks being victims. It isn’t a book suggesting crocodiles might be harmless and misunderstood. 

Instead, let’s first view nature in a very pragmatic way. What are ways we humans can get into trouble? What are the lessons we can learn from tragic mistakes of the past? What does science say about the behaviors in question? And how can you apply this knowledge so you can feel confident in our wild world?

I hope what you learn here helps clear the way to turn your fears into a love affair with what some would consider the scary part of nature. The scary can give way to awe for exactly what these creatures are – even if what they are are giant man-eaters. 

Armed with a new perspective based on science and real life examples, I bet you will look at animal encounters in a new light. When you watch movies, you might find yourself looking at scenes from movies with a more discerning eye. Think of  JAWS again- where the marine biologists end up getting eaten by the over-sensationalized shark villain. Then contrast that with the modern insta-models and shark activists that swim alongside these massive sharks hoping to make you think they’re only gentle giants. The truth is not one or the other. It is in the middle. You can take these facts, make up your own mind, and judge your own risk. 

Here is what this book is

This book is designed as a straightforward guide book – a “what happens if?” book for encountering wildlife with a mix of true stories and relevant biology. I’ll walk you through many animals that have the potential to kill you, with a heavy emphasis on how to avoid an encounter in the first place. The sections on deadly plants and fungi could fill entire guides on their own, but I’ll  take you through the basics of each and best practices for staying safe when encountering them. 

The last section gives the basics of outdoor survival. This includes knots, knives, fire-starting and the shelter building. It’s often these basics that (with a little practice and knowhow) could really save your life. 

You can find even more outdoor survival resources and videos through my YouTube channels and via StoneAgeMan.com and UntamedScience.

An Audio Sample: My Survival Story

I did record the audible version of Mother Nature is Not Trying to Kill you too. Here is a sample from chapter one.

Buy the book!

You can get the Wildlife and Bushcraft guide on Amazon.

If you’d rather support the work we are doing I have signed copies for just a tad under what you can get it on amazon here. If you don’t want to support us at that tier for long, you don’t have to. It’s great to have you here though. Just drop your monthly support to whatever you’re comfortable with. 🙂

I hope you enjoy the read! If you pick it up, let us know what you think!

Written by Rob Nelson

Rob is an ecologist from the University of Hawaii. He is the co-creator and director of Untamed Science. His goal is to create videos and content that are entertaining, accurate, and educational. When he's not making science content, he races whitewater kayaks and works on Stone Age Man.

You can follow Rob Nelson