Thursday, August 04, 2005

I Speak of Studies and the Color Green...

Earlier this year, Frank and I spotted bluebird houses just past our Tittabawassee River floodplain property, and then occasionally afterward, people out there checking the boxes. The gregarious Frank just couldn't stop himself; he went out to our asparagus patch and introduced himself. That's how he met this young man, Timothy Fredricks, a Graduate Research Assistant from Michigan State University. Tim and his associates are part of the team conducting a MSU wildlife study along the Tittabawassee River floodplain. These photos are courtesy of Mr. Fredricks. Thank you Tim!

He told us they were here to band the birds and study them for an extended period of time, so of course we asked him if they were also looking for dioxin levels. He said that was a part of the study so naturally I was glad to hear about this first season preliminary results of the study this morning on our local NBC TV station.

That news led me to check my RSS feeds where I found an article by Jeremiah Stettler in the Bay City Times - Researcher finds no dioxin impact on animal population. Don't know why Saginaw News didn't report it since Jeremiah is staff reporter at SN.

I enjoyed looking through Tim's photos of these healthy little baby birds and their parents. It was difficult to choose but I just had to share the only photo of him holding a female bluebird. I presume this was taken when they banded the adults, since he explained how they trap them and it's no easy job. Although there are photos from eggs to the empty nest, I just couldn't resist the photo of this 14 day old juvenile.

I was delighted to hear the news - no birth defects in the babies. I realize this is only the first of several years, but it's encouraging. Let's hope the babies look just as good next year when this little fellow will be among the parents! By the way, Tim told us bluebirds eat mealy worms and whatever other meat they can find. Since they don't necessarily migrate south in the winter, we were concerned about their winter fare. I'm here to tell you they will most certainly eat a gourmet selection of birdseed since we now occasionally spot a bluebird at our feeders!

A Dow study of workers exposed to dioxin emerged recently in the Journal of Exposure Analysis and Environmental Epidemiology, so of course the local media was right on it! Not much difference between the Saginaw News: Dowstudy: No ill effects and Midland Daily News: Exposure study now in print, but basically it all boils down to a simple sentence: People who actually work with dioxin don't seem to have any more ill effects than the general population BUT environmental extremists (people who insist no level of dioxin is the only safe level) think the study is flawed. (..or would that be a compound sentence?)

...and then there's Hector Galbraith, a hired hand for MDEQ. He was hired to give a speech by two local environmental extremist groups... now what do you suppose his message would be? To quote from the Midland Daily News article, Researcher: Dioxin risk exists, published today, much of Galbraith's work... 'relied somewhat on assumption-based modeling,..' Sounds just like the local weatherperson... they always report 'The computer model indicates...' and how often are they right... or should I say wrong? Right! It's a crapshoot. I'm going with the MSU people... and of course Dr. Garabrant's team from U of M! These are people who depend on sound science to get the job done.

and it's not easy being green, so Patrick Moore quit the organization he co-founded, Greenpeace, when they started to evolve into extremism. Remember when I mentioned him in this blog last February? Well the same article we discussed emerged recently at It's too good to lose so this time I saved a copy of Moore's explanation on why he quit Greenpeace, Extreme agendas harmful...Environmentalists have lost their way,on my domain. I suggest you read it and if you read it before, read it again. I did.

Furthermore, don't forget our legislators are working for us... this time to protect the rights of homeowners.


Tell him/her that you support
the Homeowners' Rights Bill

No comments: