first_imgCLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos or video on a mobile deviceTORONTO – Once Kevin Durant finished making history, the Warriors’ star took off his jersey. Then he gave it away.Following the Warriors’ 131-128 overtime loss to the Toronto Raptors on Thursday, rapper Drake received a present that both symbolized Durant’s greatness and kindness. After Drake asked him at halftime for his jersey, Durant handed the No. 35 gold jersey to the Raptors’ global ambassador once the …last_img read more


first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The second week of Feeding Farmers 2016, sponsored by AgriGold, took the Ohio Ag Net crew near the Indiana-Ohio state line to Green Oak Farms in Preble County. A notable turnout joined the team for lunch on the grain and livestock farm.Gary Long runs the grain side of the large operation. He talked with Dale Minyo about their planting season this year and the operation overall. Gary Long being interviewed by Dale Minyo Gale Long of Green Oak Farms boasts an impressive classic tractor collectionlast_img read more


first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The turkey vulture has long been a common (if not always pleasant) sight throughout Ohio’s rural landscape, but in more recent years its nastier, more brazen cousin has been showing up in the state.Black vultures — like turkey vultures — are scavengers that feast on carrion, providing a valuable service. Black vultures, though, are known to take things one-step further by facilitating the animal’s death when it suits their purposes.“Over the better part of at least the past 15 years, Ohio livestock producers have increasingly experienced problems with black vultures. Unlike its red-headed cousin the turkey vulture that feeds only on the carcasses of dead animals, black vultures are an aggressive bird that will, on occasion, kill other animals for food,” said Stan Smith, program assistant in Ag and Natural Resources for Fairfield County Extension. “It’s not an uncommon occurrence for a black vulture to attack a cow in the pasture while in labor in an effort to prey on the newly-born calf even while still in the birth canal.”The black vulture’s range is throughout much of the southeastern United States down into Texas and Mexico, though the bird has been seen as far north as Maine. The predatory scavengers have been gradually moving northward into Ohio.“We gauge their population by the calls we get for complaints whether it be property damage or livestock losses and this year it has increased from last year,” said Jeff Pelc, U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services biologist and district supervisor for southern Ohio. “We had a livestock loss as far north as Summit County this year from the black vultures. That is the first time black vultures have been reported that far north in Ohio.”There are several ways to tell the difference between a turkey vulture and a black vulture that often can be found in groups together. At ground level they can be easily distinguished by the color of their heads. Turkey vultures have a red head and black vultures have black heads.The wings are also distinctly different while in flight.“On the undersides of turkey vulture wings, the primary and secondary flight feathers are white to gray on the bottom side as you are looking up at the bird. Black vultures have only have white primary feathers on tips on the wings,” Pelc said. “Plus, the black vulture tail is much shorter compared to a turkey vulture tail which is more elongated.”The generally disagreeable black vulture may be even more so due to the fact that it is a protected species. Addressing a black vulture problem in the back 40 with a shotgun is illegal and subject to federal penalties.“They are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which means you cannot harm injure or kill them without a permit,” Pelc said. “You can harass them without a permit.”Pelc suggests a number of strategies livestock operations can employ to protect the animals from problematic populations of black vultures.“You can use pyrotechnics, loud noises, lights, lasers, and some people let their dogs chase them,” he said. “Cultural methods to control them would be to compost carcasses and stillborn animals and afterbirth immediately. They are scavengers by nature and they have a really good olfactory sense. If there is food there they will set up shop. They will focus on those areas.“You can also make the area less hospitable for the vultures. If you have a large solitary tree in your pasture where 20 vultures perch every day, cut it down. Don’t let them get accustomed to your property.”The next step in controlling black vultures is to get a permit.“You can apply for a depredation permit to remove a few of these birds. The intention of the permit is just to reinforce harassment,” Pelc said. “They are very social and very wise birds. When you take one or two of them out they get the hint very quickly.”Pelc said that the process of getting a depredation permit for black vultures is very easy in Ohio.“Just call our office and fill out the application. Then there is a form we fill out for the producer. The fee is exempt for the first time — the Ohio Division of Wildlife pays for first time applicants who are livestock producers for black vultures. If they need it in subsequent years that fee will be their responsibility financially,” he said. “It is a very timely process — it just takes a few business days — and they do not have to show that they have had predation. If the threat is there we can get the permit issued.”With a permit, a black vulture or two can be killed and put on display, which has proven to be very effective at keeping other black vultures away.“USDA’s National Wildlife Research Center found if you hang a bird in an area where others can see it they will vacate the area,” Pelc said.USDA-Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Wildlife Services specialists recommend some key factors in hanging a black vulture effigy including:Finding locations with the highest bird activity or use, often indicated by an accumulation of feces and feathers; Visibility of the effigy to birds coming into the roost; Prominent branches or support structures; and Accessibility to the site.From “Guidelines For Using Effigies to Disperse Nuisance Vulture Roosts” from the USDA-APHIS Wildlife Services National Wildlife Research Center: “Once a bird has been acquired under a legal permit, it should be determined whether a long term or temporary placement is needed. If long-term placement or multiple usage is required, it is advised that the bird be prepared by a taxidermist and then treated with a spray on preservative, such as Scotch Guard for leather. The posture of the prepared bird should resemble that of a dead bird hung by its feet with one or both wings hanging down in an outstretched manner. For short- term placement (up to three months, depending on weather conditions) and if odor is not a concern, then an intact carcass can be used, under legal permit.”Pelc said that if there has been livestock predation from black vultures, it is important that it is reported.“The national statistic is that for every one animal that is reported lost to predators, whether it is from coyotes or black vultures, there are five that go unreported,” Pelc said. “For us to capture what kind of impact predators are having in Ohio it is really important that they give us a call. We can help with technical advice per individual. We have a few specialists that can give more guidance.”To initiate the permitting process, livestock producers experiencing problems with aggressive black vultures should call USDA-APHIS Wildlife Services office at 866-487-3297 or 614-993-3444.For more on effigy placementlast_img read more


first_imgChhattisgarh Governor Balramji Dass Tandon, who was one of the founder members of the BJP’s parent organisation Jan Sangh, died after suffering a heart attack at a government hospital here on Tuesday, an official said. He was 90.Mr. Tandon breathed his last at the state-run Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Memorial Hospital where admitted this morning after he complained of uneasiness, Governor’s secretary, Surendra Kumar Jasiwal, told PTI. Mr. Tandon was kept in the hospital’s critical care unit in view of his serious condition, he added.The Governor suffered a heart attack, the hospital’s medical superintendent, Dr. Vivek Choudhary, said.Chief Minister Raman Singh, who visited the hospital earlier on getting the news of Mr. Tandon’s illness, announced a seven-day state mourning in view of the Governor’s demise.Independence Day will be observed in a traditional manner on Wednesday and there will be no award and cultural ceremonies, the CMO said in an official release.Mr. Tandon’s body will be taken to Raj Bhawan, where it will be kept for people to pay their respects at 5 pm. The body will be taken later to Mr. Tandon’s native place in Punjab.In his condolence message, the chief minister said that as Governor, Mr. Tandon offered his valuable services to Chhattisgarh for around four years. “He was like a father figure to me,” Mr. Singh said.Mr. Tandon had assumed the office of Governor in Chhattisgarh on July 2014.During his long political career, he served on various posts, including as deputy chief minister of Punjab.The six-time MLA was also jailed from 1975 to 1977 during Emergency.last_img read more