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Mark’s Musings – April 26, 2017

| April 25, 2017
Mark Fortune

Mark Fortune







You expect this column to meet certain criteria – I think. Maybe? I need to take a little different tack this week based on some information gleaned from the Earth Day event held at the Coshocton County Career Center on Saturday, April 22. Did you know that we have problems with bats, bees and butterflies?

There were some very informative folks at this event that have a passion for our environment and the earth. We all should. I need to be more precise with my wording – the “problems” are that they are disappearing. There is something called a White Nose syndrome that is killing hibernating bats in the eastern and now central United States. The goal is to defend a line in the central U.S. – keeping the syndrome on this side. Thankfully, many really smart people are working on this problem.

Let’s move on to the bees. Specifically the fragile honeybee. Colonies are collapsing – even disappearing with Colony Collapse Disorder – or CCD – and the bee population is subsequently declining. This is obviously bad news. Really bad. Bees do much more than make honey as you probably know – they pollinate our food. A Google search will quickly bring up thousands of articles – and you have to search hard to find one that says anything positive about the bee population. Beekeepers in Coshocton County are doing their part and that is good news. An article posted on www.slate.com indicates that the bee population is all right and recovering. It is from July of 2016. There are many more articles that say otherwise. I guess you can do the research and form your own opinion.

Now let’s focus on the butterfly. This is the Monarch butterfly. According to an online article from The Washington Post dated 2014, there are three key reasons for the rapid decline in the Monarch butterfly numbers. One is the illegal deforestation in Mexico in their breeding grounds, the second is two very hard weather seasons and the third and most significant according to the article is the decline of milkweed in the Midwest – a source of food – due to pesticides and habitat removal. There are 108 species of milkweed and there are groups that are working on this problem too, including www.monarchwatch.org.

That is probably enough downer news for one column but these three things are important to us all.

We have to give a shout out to Colton Conkle – National Champion in the Elks Hoop Shoot for his age bracket. I say again, National Champion. Wow. That is incredible and something to be proud of! Way to go Colton!

The Cavs are rolling – at least through the first round. Indians have – somehow – vaulted themselves into a first place tie with Detroit. The Cubbies are in first, the Pirates are in last and the boys from Cincinnati are right behind the Cubs with 20 games gone by in a 160 plus game season.

The Coshocton Community Choir spring concert is this Sunday at McKinley Auditorium. Enjoy. And who else is enjoying the beautiful display of dogwoods and flowers around the community?

Category: Mark's Musings, Opinion

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