I was born in 1988 in the land of black bears and sandy soils, a small town in northern Ontario called Sioux Lookout.
For almost ten years I’ve been collecting tools & techniques for helping modern humans rediscover razor sharp naturalist instincts, and my goal is to share them with you.
My Journey Into The Wilderness…
When I was 15 I had an experience of sudden lucid clarity while hiking in the woods.
I became aware of my senses in a way I had never before experienced. The trees seemed to shimmer as sounds of rushing water & bird song filled my ears. The air entering my lungs was electric.
I realized that something about being in that environment had stimulated my mind into an altered state of consciousness where I could think more clearly.
Being normally a very scattered & rather ADD child, it was striking to notice how quiet and focused my mind was.
I began taking regular extended walks in nature as a way to stimulate insight.
I later discovered the books of Tom Brown Jr and became a dedicated student of his lessons about nature awareness and living closely to the earth.
Discovering The Wilderness Inside…
I believe that paying attention to nature is one of the secrets to activating the full potential of the human brain.
But I’ve also observed that most people in modern times are going about it in totally the wrong way.
Most people have lots of ideas… but very few skills. It’s the dreaded NATO syndrome. No Action Talk Only.
It means there are lots of people who like the idea of awakening their naturalist instincts, but never actually do anything to build skills with plants & birds of their local ecosystem.
That’s Where My Focus Is Different.
My focus is and always has been 100% practical.
I recognized early on in my journey that connecting with nature has to start with one simple question…
What can you do?
- Can you start fires by rubbing sticks together?
- Can you locate wild animals by listening to bird alarms?
- Can you track shifting patterns in plants, trees, insects, weather & landscape topography through all four seasons?
- Can you follow the footprints of wildlife through the forest?
The more you can do… The more you can be.
And the more you can be… The less you need.
What Was The Path To Where I Am Now?
After high school I attended the Wilderness Awareness school started by Tom Brown’s student, Jon Young.
While it was an amazingly profound and life-changing experience, it was hugely expensive and draining on my finances.
I wanted to create a way for others like me to go deep into nature awareness skills without needing to travel & spend all that money.
Of course, there’s no replacement for live experiences with a mentor, but I believe my online courses will help you get started on the right foot.
I can help you practice and train your outdoor skills without needing to uproot your life and travel thousands of miles in search of the right teacher.
Get Started On Your Nature Mentoring Journey:
I’m always cooking up new training opportunities.
Probably the best place for beginners to get started is by watching my free training video – How To Read The Secrets of A Forest
Or… If you want to learn how you can start getting closer to wildlife by listening to bird alarms, check out the Bird Language Adventure Series
my name is simon tobias
i managed to come over an old mystery like you did :
why do animals fear me as a human ? even if i mean NO harm honestly
i am still working on it but iam very close since in my home birds recognize me
and have no fear around me … but for them its new that humans want to commune with them ( i also start to communicate with the birds )
but yes they sit on the road at my feet and i can walk by …my communication to them is like broken english .. so they got scared sometimes on intuition because i do not fully understand them
pls contact me
the best experience i had was a 12cm butterfly landing on my hand ..
or saving an ice bird from death (ants got him ) becoming friendly to me
i really want to know why they are scared of us and how to fix it. Because i love them as well i do hardly trying to learn their language by experience . and be a friend
i know that we can be friends again so … why they dont know anymore that if we are around a cat might NOT bother them .. ?? why they are scared of humans
Around where i live birds know me and i know them , they are more intelligent then most ppl think but they can remember you . And directly around my house they are not scared but if i try to communicate they get confused . but they let me come Very close ….
Brian Mertins says
Hi Simon, as you point out there’s a lot that can be done to build trust with birds & animals, and I absolutely encourage you to keep working on it.
It does take time and lots of practice.
The best results come from committing yourself to a long term practice of cultivating awareness & sensitivity to nature, body language, bird alarm calls, observation skills, etc.
These are all topics I discuss a lot in this website so definitely peruse my free content and apply the methods.
Always remember that having close encounters with wildlife is a life-changing experience partly because it’s so rare.
It says a lot about a person who can use bird alarms to track down and get close to wild animals. You have to be VERY tuned & sensitive to the subtleties of animal communication to get consistently great results.
There are specific changes in mindset & attitude that need to happen before you can reach your full potential.
The other thing to remember is that these are wild animals living in a survival situation! You won’t be able to domesticate them in a single lifetime, and you shouldn’t try!
Just let them be wild, and cherish the moments when you get to join them in that wildness. They will remind you what true wildness is!
Imagine if the situation were reversed… How safe would you feel being close to a tiger out in some remote jungle?
Their fear of humans is logical 😉
Their fear is feedback for you. It tells you you’re violating their comfort zone. Just pull back, take it slow, and let them set the pace.
I hope that helps!
I came to your site because this morning I found a raccoon under our farm truck. I knew there was something living in the yard because the dogs were alarming in the same direction every day at about the same time. We have an old abandoned farm house up on a small rise here and we’ve left it standing for porcupines and raccoons and foxes that will den under it. Anyway, I was curious what raccoons eat in winter which led me here. So then I started reading about who you are and what you do. I feel the same way you do when I walk through the bush here in Saskatchewan. My favourite thing to do is find a quiet spot and sit and listen and watch. Especially in the spring and summer. You can tell who has come back from the south by listening to the birds. I’ve seen all sorts of things by listening to alarm calls from birds or from going out to visit my goats in the pasture and just sitting with them. Nature is a balm for me and any day I can’t be outside is a bad dayfor me. Lol. Thank you for taking the time to write about raccoon feeding habits. I learned something today. I’m off to escort our raccoon friend out from the truck so I can go check cows.