The Montana Legislature recently passed a bill legalizing the salvage, consumption, and/or donation to charity of animals hit and killed by cars-aka roadkill. Gov. Steve Bullock signed it into law in April, and it takes effect Oct. 1.
The law applies to deer, elk, antelope and moose, and puts the state in the company of Alaska, Illinois, Wisconsin, New York, Florida, and West Virginia in condoning the consumption of vehicle-tenderized meat.
With deer populations at all-time highs in many regions – and car vs. deer collisions skyrocketing as well – it’s possible other states will follow suit with roadkill bills of their own.
Salvaging roadkill makes sense for several reasons. Wild game is some of the healthiest meat there is, and it’s a shame to let it rot by the road. Eating roadkill could save families a lot of money they would otherwise have spent on meat, which might have something to do with why the beef industry lobbied against the bill, citing food-safety concerns.
In addition to feeding people, roadkill salvage would protect the lives of eagles, ravens, coyotes and other scavengers that typically feast on roadside carcass, and are sometimes killed themselves in the process. And the bill stands to save taxpayer dollars, as every carcass removed by a meat salvager is one fewer that road crews have to deal with - which typically entails hauling it to the dump for composting.
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 20:39
K. Kelli Richardson, a physical therapist with 24 years of experience, recently attended a two-day conference in Livingston presented by Steven P. Ferdig of Chapman University in Orange, Calif.
The conference, entitled “The Cervical Spine: Mobility versus Stability,” covered 15 neck mobilization techniques for the neck, upper back, shoulders, chest and face, including the jaw, a site of pain about which many physical therapy patients complain.
At the conference, participants learned how to assess movement to determine specifically in the cervical spine what the range of movement - or lack thereof - is in the patient. The assessment techniques they learned contributed to physical therapists’ treatment plans and may alleviate suffering patients with chronic neck pain.
Ms. Richardson, who holds a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from the University of California at North Ridge, previously practiced physical therapy at a Pasadena, Calif., hospital for 12 years, owned her own practice in California and has been practicing for 10 years with Lance Hendricks, owner of Montana Physical Therapy, 2370 Ave. C, in Billings.
Mr. Hendricks, who holds a master’s degree in physical therapy, said, “There is new hope for neck pain. Many patients come to us 15 years after a car accident and they still have pain. They tell us, ‘I went to physical therapy and did exercises, but it still hurts.’”
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 20:37
Don “Babe” Weinberger and his wife, Eloise, wish they had known then what they know now: how to recognize a stroke. Eleven years ago a stroke changed Don’s life. He is a former truck driver and mechanic who raised three sons and a daughter on the Fort Peck Reservation.
For Don, and for many survivors of stroke, recovery continues for the rest of his life. Half of the people who suffer a stroke are moderately to severely impaired, according to the National Stroke Association.
“Still have a tough time with my right side,” Don says. But Don’s main frustration is the lingering effect on his speech. “I can’t hardly talk,” he explains in an earnest fashion, his hands mobile, reaching for words. “It’s hard to find what I want to say. The thought in my brain … doesn’t connect with my lips.”
“I didn’t expect to be a speech therapist,” says Don’s wife, Eloise, with good humor. She has helped him with his recovery, from learning to walk again to practicing speech. His sons also helped take care of Don during his early recovery.
Before his stroke, like baseball’s famous “Babe,” Don was used to having the muscle power to do what he wanted to do. Don’s decreased strength in his right arm is what finally signaled Eloise to call an ambulance. Don was taken to Billings where a doctor told him he had had a stroke. It was three days after the start of his symptoms.
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 20:36
Billings Clinic and RegionalCare Hospital Partners, a national hospital system, have announced a new joint venture that draws on the resources of both organizations.
The new relationship will provide multiple options for health care organizations in the northern Rockies region to become affiliated with the newly formed entity – Billings Clinic RegionalCare LLC.
This new relationship does not affect the governance or ownership of Billings Clinic or any of its current affiliate relationships across Montana and northern Wyoming, a news release said. The new arrangement offers potential partners expanded clinical services; access to physician integration, support, and recruitment; clinical protocols; and quality improvement systems.
Additionally, the new entity offers operational expertise and access to the capital needed for such growth strategies, including technology and facility expansion and renovation, the release said.
“Billings Clinic has a longstanding commitment to partnering with local communities to enhance access to quality health care. To build on this commitment, we have formed this relationship with RegionalCare in large part because of our shared values,” said Nicholas Wolter, chief executive officer of Billings Clinic. “This creates an additional opportunity for other organizations and communities that have an interest in exploring a relationship with Billings Clinic,” Wolter added.
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 20:35
The 19th season of ArtWalk kicks off with the Spring ArtWalk from 5-9 p.m. Friday, May 3, in Downtown Billings.
Twenty-seven galleries will feature receptions, free to the public, to honor their artists and the artists’ new work. Maps are available at all of the participating galleries and on Page 17 of this issue of The Outpost. The artWALKERSbus will begin its free ride to the galleries at 5 p.m. at the Good Earth Market.
Terpsichore Dance returns to ArtWalk and will perform on Montana Avenue. The following galleries are offering a drawing for a free gift from their stop on ArtWalk: Lore Law, Stephen Haraden, Barjon’s, Billings Food Bank, Billings Gallery of Fine Art, Big Sky Cheap Tees, and Catherine Louisa Gallery. Visit www.artwalkbillings.com to download a copy of the map and plan your self-guided tour.
Highlights of the ArtWalk will include:
• The Billings Art Association will hold its annual auction to benefit the “Images: Art in the Schools” grant at CTA. Featured artists will include Jeannette Magstadt and Phil Bell. In addition, a string quintet from the Billings Community Orchestra will play.
Last Updated on Thursday, 02 May 2013 20:10
A neighbor in New Mexico once told me that it’s bad luck, not to mention bad form, to kill a rattlesnake.
Unfortunately, he told me this after I’d already killed one.
My neighbor had lived on that mountain most of his life, and he was at peace, if not in love, with its snakes, including rattlers. Although he’s never been bitten, he has lost dogs.
The snakes were here first, he told me, and they’re better for the landscape than we are. If you kill one, he said, you will be the last thing it sees, and your image will remain in its eyes. If another snake looks at those dead eyes, it will know who killed it.
The rattlesnake I had killed was sleeping in the garden, beneath a tomato plant, when my wife noticed it.
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 April 2013 14:31
MISSOULA – The predicted decrease of winter snowpack due to climate change might inconvenience winter recreationists, but for mammals that change coat color during the cold months to blend in and survive, the consequences could be much graver.
L. Scott Mills, a professor in The University of Montana College of Forestry and Conservation, will publish an article titled “Camouflage Mismatch in Seasonal Coat Color Due to Decreased Snow Duration,” in the April issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The article will detail research on the snowshoe hare, one of 10 animal species worldwide that changes color from brown to white to match seasonal snow cover.
Mills and his colleagues studied wild hares for three years in western Montana. The study examined 148 hares weekly in the field to quantify their coat color, the extent of snow around them and the percent of mismatch between the hare and their background. The three years during the study included some of the most extreme differences in snowpack duration that have occurred in the past 40 years, including the incredibly long 2010-11 snow season and the much shorter season the year before.
The results of the study link the seasonal coat-color change across different years to the prospect of less snow in the future.
Though the timing of the molt did not change in either the fall or spring for the hares in the study, the rate at which they changed did vary, but only in the spring molt.
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 April 2013 14:29
The folks at Bayern Brewery in Missoula act on their responsibility to practice eco-friendly and sustainable business practices wherever possible. Since 2010, they have been attempting to reuse as many packaging and bottling materials as possible. Now you can participate!
At Good Earth Market, a $3 deposit gets you the Bayern Ecopack, a sturdy, waxed cardboard box. Fill the Ecopack with 24 qualifying bottles in four carriers and return to the Good Earth Market.
Pick up another Ecopack and fill it up again.
• Must be standard brown 12-ounce bottles.
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 April 2013 14:28
Nature has provided no better way to cook our food than with sunlight. That may sound like a pretty sweeping statement but for almost everyone I know who has done a bit of solar cooking over time, the agreement would be nearly unanimous. Generally the food just tastes better! A simple pot of brown rice or a chicken, for example, receive a unique transformation with a dash of sunlight added. You have to taste it to believe it.
I have solar cooked for 23 years and taught and demonstrated it nearly as long. I enjoyed it from the first time I did it. I believe it is a gift literally “from on high” waiting to come into our experience to transform life. It already is doing just that in many parts of the world where countless daily lives are so much better for the entry of solar cooking.
There’s a touch of fun in taking a pot of food and putting it in a homemade or manufactured solar cooker and knowing that the only “fuel” involved for cooking is sunlight. Plus there’s no heat added to the kitchen, nothing added to the utility bill, no toxins for the environment, and delicious food added to the table!
There are very simple homemade cookers that can be constructed in 30 minutes with a dollar’s worth of materials and a Reynolds oven bag to insulate your pot while it’s in the cooker. You can see the easiest-to-make, the Box-Corner Cooker, at my website www.wholesunliving.com.
While this particular homemade cooker works well In mild to warm weather, there are more sophisticated designs which can provide for cooking even in freezing weather. I have done a lot of cooking in Minnesota and Montana in temperatures hovering around zero. Generally speaking, if I have bright sunshine, I can solar cook.
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 April 2013 14:26
Did you know that there approximately 450 miles of storm drain pipe located underneath the City of Billings? Or that the Yellowstone River is the longest free flowing river in the lower 48 States? These are just a couple of the fun facts you will find on Quack and the Pack’s Water World (billingsquackpack.com).
In March 2013, the City of Billings welcomed a little hard-hatted duck named Quack and his superhero pack to help kids and adults alike, learn about our most valuable resource: water. Enter Quack’s water world at billingquackpack.com and play fun games, learn about the water cycle, and take a trip down the storm drain with H2O Joe! There is something for all ages on the website and even a special section especially for teachers where they can print off packets and word games to teach kids about watersheds and storm water pollution.
Quack’s Pack is a group of six ducks that possess superhero powers to help clean up the enemy: water pollution. Kids can journey with Magnetic Quack to help clean the stream, as he uses his powers of attraction to get people involved in keeping water clean or join Water Woman as she uses her “lasso of compliance” to bring wayward construction sites back into the fold. Each duck has a favorite game to help people learn about the importance of protecting our watershed.
In the Wonderful World of Water, kids learn the basics of the water cycle and that it is possible that the same water we are drinking today could have once been the same as a dinosaur drank … ewww! Kids don’t need to worry though, as the water from our faucet is very clean due to treatment at the Billings Water Treatment Plant. They can also take a virtual tour of a water plant to see how water gets clean.
Kids can follow H2O Joe on a ride through an actual storm drain in the Secret World of Storm Drains. They learn that the storm drain system carries rainwater straight to creeks, lakes and rivers. Because the water that enters storm drains doesn’t get cleaned, all that trash you can see and the pollutants you can’t see – like poisonous chemicals, pesticides, soap and germs – end up in your neighborhood creeks, rivers and lakes. This means that the water is unsafe.
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 April 2013 14:26