Eugene, Yes, I'm familiar with Bulmer and Healy's respective works, though I'm not sure I derived any clear ecological wisdom message from these works. The thing is, once you start using phrases like "not greatly degraded their environment," its all a sort of word game. Take any aboriginal tribal people who are "not greatly degrading" their environment and increase their population without changing their lifestyle - would they still be not greatly degrading it? And yet the so-called "wise" lifestyle is unaltered. My New Guinea folks again (who are remaining nameless, you'll notice). I estimated that this tiny village, which usually had less than 80 people in residence at any given point, was packing in about 52 tons of firewood per year for their basic cooking and heating needs. The near-bush was exceedingly well trimmed and one had to trek out about 20 minutes are so to get to good firewood. Just start increasing population figures for a bit and you begin to get a grimmer picture. This is all before any Western influence becomes relevant. Not that there aren't some countervailing goodies in all this. To touch upon birds, for example, for the sake of those birders still reading: with the expansion of the cleared areas around their villages, people began to plant more marita pandanus (for their own diet). This is a favorite food of the Raggiana Bird of Paradise, among others. The result of this human activity was that Raggiana was the 4th most common bird around the village: a treat for the visiting birder!