Newspaper Archive of
The Billings County Pioneer
Beach, North Dakota
December 15, 1960     The Billings County Pioneer
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December 15, 1960

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BILLINGS COUNTY PIONEER BLUEBIRD' HAS REASON SING THE BLUES The bluebird may be a sym- bol of happiness, as 4he popu- lar songwriters say, but there is little joy among bluebird lovers t~ese days. This popular little songster, member of the thrush family and politician enough to be the State Bird ,of New York and Missouri, has become so scarce as to .be almost totalIy absent throughout much of its normal range. The Naticmal Audubon Society calls it a "disaster spa des." he hermit E s'tern phoebe and house wren also were termed "disaster species" by the National Audubon Soc- iety after drastic population de clines in 1958, declines attribut- ed largely to severe winter weather. The hermit thrush and phoe- be are "better off" and the house wren appears to be "doing well" many places in 1980, ac- cording to the National Aud- ubon Society. But Old Man Winter dealt the b~ue~rd another mortal blow last March when blizzards and re~ord-breaking cold swept thr- ough the bQrder states and southward, deprivin~ the birds of food and freezing many to death. Summarizing reports on spring migrations in the August issue of Audubon Field Notes, Editor Aaron 1~ B%gg wrote: "V/l~le quantRative data are highly desirable in assessing a population disaster, nlo obser- ver in New England needs any data to realize that the Eastern bluebird has become a scarce if not rare bird in that area "Whatever roles in this crash may have been played in insect- icides and the competition from starlings, English sparrows and house wrens, it seems clear that fhe bluebird has suffered pro- foundly from the severe winter weather of 1957-58 and again in March of 1960". The Mas cechusegts Atiriubon Society became alarmed and started an investigation of the cm~ses When its own surveys showed the 'bluebird population was down 75 per cent since last year in the Bay State. Mrs. Fred C. Laskey, widely. krmv a ornit ologigt of Nash- ville. Tenn informed the Nat- ional Audubon Society that blue- birds in her area were at their lowest point in 34 years. Mrs. Laske~y has kept nest-box re- cords in Warner Parks near Nashville for 25 years. She re- ported only two nests with eggs on April 6 this year, ccancmred to 18 nests with eggs on the same date in 1959. "In March when bluebirds are no~lly ne~tin~;~' she wr~te~ "we had' record-breaking cold and snow. I found a number dead in nest boxes." William L. Hig~house main- rains 100 bluebird nesting boxes as a scientific lmb~y in Warren County, Penru~ylvania. He re- ported only 30 to 35 pairs this year, compaired to 65 pairs in 1959. Mrs. Louise C. Blake, who writes a bird column in the Watertown, N. Y Daily Times, noted a "sharp decrease in many species, but especially bluebirds, members of the swal- low family, warblers, and other insect eaters." She wondered if the growing use of chemical in- secticides might be a contribut- ing factor. Joe D. Allen of Guthrie, Ken- tucky, writer for the Clarksville (Tenn.) Leaf-Ohronicle, report- ed a virtual absence of bluebirds in his area. Like Mrs. Laskey, he aRributed this to severe weather that lasted through five weeks of late February and March. "T haven't seen a blue- bird, dead or alive, since then." Allen said. "Many people told me of finding dead ones in bird- hbuses, barns and sheds after the snows." National Audubon Society sDokesmen said they do not 'be- lieve the Eastern bluebird is in an~ danger of extinction. R will come back. t~hey predicted, but it may take several years for the species to recover from its cur- rent "disast. er" status. Bird lovers can help by providing nesting boxes, maintaining the boxes from ~'ear to year, and giving the birds all possible protection. LATEST DRUGS CAN'T REPLACE SANITATION The latest miracle drugs and serums help, but they won't solve the livestock disease problem on your farm. Before anything else, good old-fashioned sanita- tion is the first thing you should look to for disease control. Sanitation isn't something you get busy with when an animal comes down with disease. In- stead, it's a vital part of man- agement that should go with you whenever and wherever you work with livestock to prevent the disease in the first place. Farmers who practice mnita- t~on do have the lowest veterin- ary bills. There are people who always clean and disinfect far- rowing pens with lye, and who keep newly arrived animals apart from others for several days observation so as to avoid con- tamination to whole herds if by chance they may have a conta- gious disease. [] Now is a good time to start controlling next year's garden insects by giving the garden area a very thorough cleanup. @OT THE RANTING DONE FOR HIM--Farmer John Kaerth, Buffering a lingering illness, lies in a special bed in his sta- tion wagon in Maxwell, Calif and watches that long line of tractors plant his crops for him. Good guys, those neighbors. NELSON COUNTY RATES "FIRST" IN MANTOUX Nelson county is the first coun- ty in North Dakota to complete a county-wide Mantoux testing program to detect the presence of tuberculosis among its resi- dents. The program was sponsored by the Nelson County Tuberculosis and Health Assn with the co- operation of local physicians. the state health department. State Tuberculosis and Health Assn and the State Tuberculos- is Sanatorium. A Mantoux ~est involves in- serting "testing" material un- der the skin and checking for a reaction that would indicate the presence of. or past contact with. tuberculosis. The program is carried out in conjunction with a mobile X-ray unit and if a positive reaction is observed, the person is then given a complete chest X-ray. Of the county's eligible popu- lation of 7,296 persons, 7,108 were contacted and 91.86 per cent pre-registered for the tests. Although all the pre-register- ed citizens of Nelson County did not show up for the test. a total of 5.135 citizens did and were given the Mantoux test, chest x-ray, or both. Persons over 65 years of age received chest x-rays only. There were 665 in this group and only 2.85 per cent showed positive x- ray results. Four of these showed suspicious tuberculosis, four car- diac conditions, one a tumor and the rest were "other pathologies." Of the total 5,13~ people Man- oux tested. 4,407 were negative and 687 were positive. These 687 were checked by x-ray and only 17 were determined definitely positive. Three showed suspici- ous tuberculosis; two, cardiac; one, tumor: and the other 1.1 were labeled "other pathology". W. Van Heuvelen. ~xecutlve officer of the State Health De- partment, expressed his com- mendations to Nelson County re- sidents for the tremendous job done by county volunteers m pre-registration and the high percentage of participation by citizens of the county. Food processing accounts for about 20 cer~ts of each con.sum- er's dolhr spent for farm food products, USDA reports. pA/VNY, HAV[; YOU I(0 SIN 14,A$ [ AFT '8 YOUl~ FAT//EI~'5 i fOR A NEP/EXPLOS/V '. ~PED TO sTEAL "rl.4ESE DOCUMENTS P~VB NE M/AS A FO,QE/GN RP)<*. KO s/n/ P r.LY'~ GOT 7"H&" GOLL~ WHIL DANNY' READe POCUMIENT6 * O'TOOLE OF ARABIA--The movie "Lawrence of Arabia" will go before the cameras in Jordan with Peter O'Toole playing the British adventurer who led the Arabs in revolt against their Turkish masters. At left is Col. T. E. Lawrence as he was photographed by Lowell Thomas in 1918. At right is O'Toole, IrL~h-born veteran of the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre. W/-/O /P~IM-~O RANGeR ,I F/N~ OUT', THE OTPIER fir's A BOYl--Prestdent-elect Kennedy t~ all ~mfles and Georgetown University Hospital night nursing supervisor Ma, s. J. F. Robinson i~ even more so u she escort~ him to see wife Jacquelina and the new baby. The birth was re- ported to him while he wu flying to Florida. andhe turned right around and flew back to Wa~lngt(m. ~e'A~E~9 FOR ,~OMBL~,I *W"A)~ Z~'ALIN" ~,VI;"M 7"/*/&" M N 14/1./0 K/ZLE~ KO S:/N TM CAP TM,~'~ ~W WON'T YOU COME