Very good article on the cougars in the Bendon area. I also live in the Interlochen /Bendon area and have seen the cougars in my back yard ( black ones with a baby in tow ).
There is several living in the Karlin area currently. The are also three living in Grawn. I have been tracking them down for the past year.
I also have a picture of a cougar that is very clear.
Good article that really tells the truth about the way the DNR handles this issue. The same thing happened to me.
Dale Maupin Bendon
Hogs pose a threat
Readers of the Northern Express should not be mislead by Robert Downes‘ recent tongue-in-cheek treatment (Who Let The Hogs Out?) of Michigans growing problem with wild hogs. If our state continues to ignore it, and our citizens joke about it while waiting for the government to save us, the wild hog will likely do damage to the land comparable to that caused in the Great Lakes by zebra mussels, lamprey eels and other exotic pests.
Crop losses (as much as $10,000 worth on a single farm), ruined lawns, a child and adult chased by two hogs near Ann Arbor, and state forest damage have all been documented in Michigan in the last several months. Pseudorabiesa devastating disease in domestic swinehas been found in wild hogs roaming parts of the state. Its not a movie or a joke, or somebody elses problem.
The Michigan Wildlife Conservancy is not being alarmist in its assessment of the potential effects of wild hogs. The Conservancy has been conducting research and educating the public about the problem for two years. We brought one of the worlds top experts on hogs to Michigan and consulted with several other out-of-state experts about the lengthy and well-documented record of destruction wherever hogs have become established. Forty-two states and several Canadian provinces have learned the hard-way that the wild hog threat is no laughing matter. The $800 million annual damage caused by wild hogs across America is conservative. Thats why biologists, agricultural experts, and citizen-conservationists are urging Michigan, and I urge Mr. Downes, to take the wild hog threat seriously.
For more information about Michigans wild hog problem, readers can contact the Michigan Wildlife Conservancy at 517-641-7677 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Patrick J. Rusz, Ph.D
Director of Wildlife Programs
Michigan Wildlife Conservancy
The cost of digital TV
Re: Tom Carr‘s story on the upcoming switch to digital TV:
Talk about disconnection: look at this side of the situation. All I seem to hear is the date of changeover.
A government mandate to switch to digital TV. Ever wonder where the convertors are being manufactured?
Stimulus: Government mandates should include Made-In-the-USA.
Rebate: Yes, please. We all are eligible for a rebate that subsidizes manufacturing in a foreign country.
Reality: Northern Michigan is stimulated by primarily manufacturing industries, correct?
Who will be accountable for this oversight? Those that are still working are paying the tax to provide the rebates.
R. Tegel via email
I am writing regarding the hookah trend that has recently reached the Traverse City area. The hookah, or waterpipe, is often seen as a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes and other forms of tobacco. However, research indicates that this is not the case. People should understand the risks that hookah use poses to their health and the health of those around them.
The hookah indirectly heats tobacco, usually with burning embers or charcoal. The smoke is filtered through a bowl of water, and then drawn through a rubber hose to a mouthpiece. Other common names for hookah include waterpipe, narghile or narghila, shisha or sheesha, and hubbly-bubbly.
Hookah is an ancient form of tobacco use originating in Persia and India. It has emerged as a new trend among young people. Hookah bars and cafes generally target 18-24 year olds.
A typical hookah smoking session lasts 40-45 minutes, during which time the user may inhale as much smoke as consuming 100 cigarettes. The heat sources for the pipe, such as wood or charcoal release additional toxins when burned. Initial research indicates that smoking hookah is at least as toxic as smoking cigarettes. Because the pipe is passed from user to user, there is an increased risk of transmitting infectious diseases including tuberculosis, hepatitis, and herpes. The secondhand smoke generated by a smoking session is dangerous to others.
It is clear that more research is needed related to the health effects of hookah use, but the available research indicates that smoking hookah is not a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes. For more information, please see the following fact sheet from the American Lung Association available at: http://slati.lungusa.org.
Lisa Danto, RN, tobacco addiction specialist coordinator, Traverse Bay Area Tobacco Coalition
Time to evolve
I appreciate Stuart Kunkles letter to the editor in your Feb. 2 issue (“Dire predictions“). He brought up an excellent point of view regarding the future of energy and life as we know it.
Listening to the radio every day it seems like were just throwing money blindly into the same sinking ship, hoping it will start to float again.
The Transition Handbook, from oil dependency to local resilience by Rob Hopkins states that there are actually several possible scenarios for life beyond the oil peak. Basically they can be described as Evolve, Adapt or Collapse.
Evolve suggests that we will use the ideas of earth stewardship and positive transitions to create a new way of life.
Adapt assumes that somehow magically a new energy source will be discovered (that we are currently unaware of) that will let civilization as we know it continue forever.
Collapse implies that nothing we do will be able to stop the crumbling of civilization (like every other civilization in history). The economy, energy and growth is interconnected in a complex web, similar to an ecosystem in nature. As housing, banking and car industries collapse, initiated by a spike then plateau in energy prices and availability, growth and the civilization based on it struggle to keep from collapsing as well.
Lets remove our ego (or fear?) from the dialogue and be open to more diverse points of view. Change can be frightening, but please dont confuse realism with pessimism and dismiss it categorically. Anticipating a future more regionally based (as Stuart Kunkle suggests), actually seems to me an optimistic (and realistic) future, a future where we spend more quality time with people (and our own children), making things by hand and relearning forgotten crafts. Personally, Im with Stuart. I vote to Evolve.
Genevieve Pfisterer TC
An affront to stoners
In regards to your recent article about medical marijuana, I wish to make a comment about the so-called stoner image. As a long-haired hippy who makes absolutely no apology for who I am, I have debated this issue with folks through the years until I want to puke.
Prejudice comes in all shapes and sizes and really needs to stop if we really believe in change. If you are stereotyping responsible, adult cannabis consumers, then you owe it to yourself (and us) to check out this website: http://coedmagazine.com/2009/02/06/the-10-most-successful-potheads-on-the-planet-cool-enough-to-admit-it/
This tye-dyed, long-haired hippy thanks you.
Rev. Steven B. Thompson,
ex. director, Michigan NORML
Correction: Credit for the beautiful decor on the cover of last weeks Home issue goes to interior designer Susan Newcomb, who created this room to showcase the look of a new luxury hotel planned for the Grand Traverse Commons.
John Weeman and Partners in Development are creating the new Inn at the Commons project. The entire purpose of expending nearly $30,000 in fixtures, furnishings and equipment for the unit was to create a sense of the finish that will be in the hotel, for visitors to the Village at Grand Traverse Commons and interested parties in the hotel to experience, he says.