I must confess that I do not throw away old socks. I pretty much don’t throw away anything, to tell you the truth. The apple and cheese platter I had for lunch? It’s sitting in my office, cleaned and ready to be used to hold paint. And every sock that has a hole in it goes into an orange box where it will ultimately be turned into a puppet, sooner or later.
But what if your hoarded—I mean reused!—refuge could be used for something more meaningful and important, such as studying a rare form of animal? Researchers at the UC Davis Sierra Nevada Adaptive Management Program are using old socks to help attract and study the rare Pacific fisher weasel.