June 25, 2014


Black Vultures: Protection from livestock damage

Until about five years ago most of the buzzards in Nicholas County were the red-headed turkey vulture variety. In fact, Officer Loren Clark of the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife doesn’t think he ever saw a black vulture in Nicholas County until about three years ago. But now the black vultures are here in great abundance, and their presence is being felt.
Vultures play an important part of the ecosystem. Their swift removal of animal carcasses actually helps prevent the spread of certain diseases. However, vultures do not see humans as a threat and are very comfortable in close proximity to humans, their buildings, and their equipment.
Nature has uniquely equipped vultures to survive in high-bacteria environments, providing them with highly acidic urine and stomach liquids. Vultures’ urine will coat their legs and their feet, killing off the bacteria from the dead animals they contact. The large birds also vomit frequently. These corrosive fluids – as well as the vultures’ sharp talons and beaks – make them highly incompatible with humans, their buildings, and their equipment.
Vulture-caused Damage
While turkey vultures tend to limit their scavenging to carcasses, black vultures are known to kill calves, goats, sheep and other smaller mammals. Recently, farmers in Nicholas County have seen several black vultures surround a calf, spread their wings to appear more threatening, and screech to drive the calf farther from its mother. The vultures will then peck out the eyes or gouge their beaks into the animal’s nose to cause severe bleeding, and eventually kill the animal and feed on the carcass.
This past year there was even a documented case in Virginia where black vultures attacked a cow that was in the process of giving birth. They began tearing away at and eating the calf even before it was fully born.
And it’s not just the threat to livestock. Black vultures can be incredibly destructive to man-made materials. Particularly in the mornings when vultures first leave their roosts, they like to find warm, sunny roofs to perch.

Wedco to host Community Baby Shower in Nicholas County

Some of the most exciting parts of being an expectant or new parent is planning for the future and sharing your enthusiasm with those around you. However, not everyone has the opportunity, means or family to fully enjoy the happy occasion.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 24 percent of children between the ages of 0-17 lived with their mothers in a single parent home in 2012, while four percent lived only with their fathers and another four percent lived with neither of their parents.
An article found in the Washington Times and shared by singlemotherguide.com reads, “Today, one in three children—a total of 15 million—are being raised without a father and nearly half live below the poverty line.” In 2013, 83.3 percent of children living in single parent homes were being raised by the mother while only 16.7 were headed by the father.
The National Women’s Law Center reports that in 2012, 40.9 percent of single mother households were living at or below the poverty level. In fact, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, “In 2012, the median income for families led by a single mother ($25,493) is only one third the median for married couple families ($81,455). Further Census Bureau data states that only one third of single mothers are receiving child support and those who do only receive about $400 per month. These statistics don’t even cover the number of children living with grandparents, other relatives or in foster care.
Looking at this information, it’s easy to see how the birth of a new child or the addition of a new baby or toddler to the family may be laced with a lot of worry and stress. The new parent or guardian may be asking, “Where will I get the money for all of the supplies I will need for this new addition?” or “Who is going to share the excitement I have for my new bundle of joy?”
Of course, it’s not just single parents or alternative guardians who experience the struggles that can come with the addition of a little one in the family. Many married or cohabiting parents can face the same worries and concerns.
In an article found at kentucky.com, as reported by the U.S. Census Bureau in 2013, Kentucky ranked in the top five for poverty rates in 2012, with the percentage climbing to 19.4. This means many parents or guardians may be in the same boat with concerns of their ability to provide for their children.
The Wedco District Health Department in Cynthiana, which services Harrison, Nicholas and Scott counties, strives to help those in need. Their mission statement includes the following: “The mission of the Wedco District Health Department is to protect, preserve and promote the health, environment and wellbeing of the people in our community.”
Added stress due to worrying is damaging to one’s health. As a part of their goal, the department endeavors to ease the burden for those who are struggling or are down-trodden as well as those who are facing the new and life-changing event of having their first child, welcoming a new little one to the family, or bringing a baby or toddler into their home to care for and rear.

Forest Hill summer adventure camp begins

MILLERSBURG - Cadets from all over the world arrived at Forest Hill Military Academy June 22 for the start of the 2014 Military Adventure Summer Camps. The first wave of intensive training courses range from one to three weeks and have several different options designed to maximize potential, while pushing cadets to their limits. Upon arrival the 30 students will be divided into three separate training groups, based on their expressed preference: Cadet Ranger Challenge, Troop Handlers Academy or Cadet Combat Engineers.
Teamwork, discipline, and respect are just a few of the merits that will be instilled in the attending cadets. The various programs aim to emulate training tactics that our well respected armed forces endure in real life circumstances. Cadets can expect to engage in battle drills, basic rifle marksmanship, combat lifesaver first aid, obstacle courses and water survival and raft/bridging operations. As a result, cadets will wrap up the course with an uncompromisable skill set, unmatched by any of their peers.
"Our camps are designed to instill in these young people the values of Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity and Personal Courage," said Headmaster Jay Whitehead.
Starting June 29, the second wave of eager recruits will begin their hard-hitting journey to earn the title of Cadets during Basic Cadet Training. A total of nearly 200 youth are expected at the camps throughout the summer programs. Open enrollment for this inimitable opportunity lasts until June 28.
About Military Adventure Camps
The mission of the Military Adventure Camps is to mentor cadets in areas such as leadership, teamwork, community service and self-discipline.
In addition to personal development, the Military style camps strive to adequately prepare cadets for a successful future through rigorous programs that compliment structured military activities and challenging physical events.

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