Archive for June 2010

Summer Kids Need to be Vaccinated Too

Some vaccines that kids don’t need in the U.S. may be needed when they travel to other countries. If your child will be traveling, schedule a visit with your health care provider well in advance of the trip. Most vaccines take time to become effective. Some vaccines must be given in a series over a period of weeks or even months.

Parents should also ask their health care provider about the routine immunizations their child may need. Updating their immunizations also prepares children for the upcoming school year.

Parents may need a copy of their child’s immunization record for summer camp registration. Health care providers can use the CHILD Profile Immunization Registry (http://www.doh.wa.gov/cfh/childprofile/default.htm) to help parents get a copy of their child’s record by printing it directly from the registry.

For help finding a health care provider or an immunization clinic, call your local health agency (www.doh.wa.gov/LHJMap/LHJMap.htm) or the WithinReach (www.withinreachwa.org) Family Health Hotline at 1-800-322-2588. To find a travel medicine clinic, ask your regular health care provider for a referral or call your local health agency.

Required vaccine information (http://www.doh.wa.gov/cfh/Immunize/schools/vaccine.htm) and travelers’ health (http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/) information is available online.

AHAB Siren Testing Monday

The Monthly All Hazards Alert Broadcast (AHAB) Test will be held on Monday July 05, 2010 at noon. This month, the system will be activated by satellite relay from Washington State Emergency Management Division at Camp Murray, WA. The system is expected to test as designed with the Westminster Chimes sounding followed by a “This is a test” message. The issues from the June test have been corrected and this will help confirm that the corrective actions by the State Emergency Management Division worked. At no time was the safety of our citizens in jeopardy from the faulty State test last month. Grays Harbor County Emergency Management is also enabled with the ability to sound the alarm if the situation warrants public notification.

Please do not call “911” during the test. If you have any questions, comments or observations, please call Grays Harbor County Emergency Management at (360) 249-3911.

West Nile virus confirmed in Benton County Mosquito Control District

Environmental monitoring for West Nile virus, which includes testing mosquito samples and dead birds, is underway across the state. On the heels of our state’s busiest year for West Nile virus cases, state health officials agree it’s important that people protect themselves.

“Wear sleeves and long pants, and cover exposed skin with an effective repellent to avoid mosquito bites,” said Gregg Grunenfelder, of the state Department of Health. “This latest detection, coming just days after mosquitoes collected in Grant County tested positive, leaves no doubt that the West Nile virus season is here.”

A second West Nile virus positive mosquito sample from Grant County has also been reported this week. While there have been no human infections detected in Washington yet this year, there were 38 reported in 2009, including one death; all of the human exposures were in eastern Washington or out of state. Last year, West Nile virus was also detected in 22 dead birds, 346 mosquito samples, 72 horses, and a dog.

People can report dead birds (www.doh.wa.gov/ehp/ts/Zoo/WNV) using the state health department’s dead bird reporting system or by contacting their local health agency (www.doh.wa.gov/LHJMap/LHJMap.htm).

For some people, West Nile virus infection can be very serious, and even fatal. Some people may develop meningitis or encephalitis; some neurological effects may be permanent. The majority of people bitten by a mosquito carrying the virus won’t become ill, yet some may have mild symptoms including headache and fever that go away without treatment. People over 50 and those with weak immune systems are at higher risk for serious illness.

Additional mosquito bite prevention tactics (www.doh.wa.gov/ehp/ts/Zoo/WNV/WNVQA.html) are available online.

Recorded audio quotes on West Nile virus prevention (http://www.doh.wa.gov/NewsRoom) are available on the Department of Health

Ten bears removed from Long Beach Peninsula town, Five Euthanized

“I’ve never seen such a concentration of bears in such a small area. It was completely unnatural and it was caused by people feeding wild animals,” Chadwick said.

A bear that learns to associate people with food is a potentially dangerous bear, and cannot be relocated in the wild, Chadwick said.

"We can’t risk human life by releasing a bear that would cause problems for other people,” he said. “A fed bear is a dead bear. We keep trying to communicate that, to try to prevent situations like this one.”

The Oysterville bear-feeding situation apparently had been going on for some time before a complaint was made, according to WDFW officers. Most, if not all, the bear feeding was conducted at one residence. The residents told WDFW officers they were spending $4,000 a year on dog food to feed the bears.

Neighbors reported they became concerned when more and more bears showed up looking for food.

The bears were so familiar around people that when a WDFW officer arrived on the scene, one of the bears crawled into the cab of his pick-up truck, said WDFW Deputy Chief Mike Cenci.

“This was a tragedy for wildlife,” said Cenci. “We were obligated to act to prevent a human tragedy as well.”

Feds Listen to WA Outdoor Enthusiasts

"One of the things that we’re hoping the administration does with this initiative is designate more water trails and Wild and Scenic Rivers. That is a great way to protect clean water for our drinking supply – and also, of course, for recreation, for fish and wildlife."

At the first listening sessions in Montana, people said more land management decisions should be made at the local level; that the agencies should have stable funding sources to commit to conservation projects; and that prices in places like Yellowstone National Park are too steep for many families.

McCoy says he likes the idea of the initiative, and not just for his business.

"My four-year-old daughter can hopefully have and see, when she’s in her 30s, all the same stuff that we have now – and in my hopes, have it be even in better shape than it is now."

The registration deadline for the Seattle meeting has passed, but there is also a website on which people can make comments and share favorite outdoor experiences: www.doi.gov.

The session will be held on Thursday, July 1, from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Franklin High School, 3013 S. Mount Baker Blvd., Seattle.

Salmon returns to Columbia River look good so far

The agency’s biologists say there are a number of reasons for these recent increases: juvenile salmon encountered highly productive ocean conditions in 2007 and 2008, and the region has made marked improvements to freshwater rearing habitat and hatchery practices in the Columbia Basin. The scientists also point to fish-friendly improvements to the basin’s hydroelectric dams, and thus better conditions for migrating fish, and better management of salmon harvests.

Columbia salmon and steelhead runs have remained strong while other West Coast salmon stocks, including Sacramento River fall Chinook, declined. Fishing closures off the central and southern Oregon Coast were designed to protect Sacramento fish. Columbia River fisheries have remained open, with provisions designed to safeguard protected species.

The pattern of improved Columbia returns may apply to other salmon species as well, the biologists say. Virtually all Columbia River sockeye are wild-origin fish, originating predominantly from Osoyoos Lake in Canada, with a smaller proportion from Lake Wenatchee. In the Snake River, only a small number of sockeye have returned each year over the past two decades, with an increase in 2008 and 2009, but virtually all of these are of hatchery origin.

However, so far this year 274,782 adult sockeye salmon have passed Bonneville Dam, which is much higher than anticipated. NOAA Fisheries biologists say if this year’s count follows a pattern similar to the past three years’, the region might see more sockeye passing Bonneville than any time since 1955.

Last month’s ocean survey, conducted by fishery biologists with NOAA Fisheries, hinted at good returns in coming years as well, according to John Ferguson, director of the fish ecology division at NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle.

“We caught a lot of young salmon in our ocean sampling during May” he said. “That’s always a promising indication that we may see good numbers of returning adults next year and the year after, if ocean productivity holds.”

Each year to aid salmon managers, NOAA assesses ocean conditions that juvenile salmon experience. These assessments measure a broad array of factors: atmospheric conditions in the North Pacific Ocean and equatorial waters, local sea-surface temperatures, salinity, availability of food for young salmon in Pacific Northwest waters and how many juvenile salmon migrate to the ocean.

“Interestingly,” Ferguson said, “we also captured an unusually high number of juvenile sockeye salmon. These were likely from the large number coming from the upper Columbia River this year.”

One set of numbers that still has fishery scientists scratching their heads are the recent Chinook jack counts. Jacks are precocious males that return a year earlier than their adult cohorts. In previous decades they have provided reasonable estimates of the number of adults that will return the following year, enabling fishery managers to set harvest limits with some degree of confidence.

However, in the past decade jack counts have lead to under- and over-predictions of actual adult returns. Last year, for example, more than 87,000 jacks were counted at Bonneville by June 20. That means there was about one jack for every two adult Chinook salmon, but typically there is only one jack for every 10 or 15 adults. Last year’s jack count, if used traditionally, would have vastly overestimated this year’s adult returns. Harvest managers had to take this high jack rate into consideration when developing harvest allocations. The exact reason jacks are returning at increasingly variable rates is unknown.

It is too soon to say much about steelhead counts at Bonneville Dam this year, because these fish are just starting to enter the river. However, steelhead numbers, while not as dramatic as those for Chinook, are also up: 27,500 had passed Bonneville Dam by June 27, substantially above the 10-year average of 16,200 for that date. This follows a general pattern of improved steelhead runs, where approximately 400,000 steelhead were counted passing Bonneville Dam each year this most recent decade compared to 217,000 counted annually from 1990 to 1999.

Typically, about 80 percent of adult salmon returns to the Columbia Basin are of hatchery origin. Under the Endangered Species Act, the long-term focus is on protecting natural-origin fish and their ecosystems. Rebuilding runs of natural-origin salmon and steelhead continues, and some are doing better than others. Upper Columbia spring Chinook, for instance, are categorized as “endangered” and efforts to aid these fish remain a high priority.

The Federal Caucus is a group of ten federal agencies operating in the Columbia River Basin that have natural resource responsibilities related to the ESA. The agencies work together to better integrate, organize, and coordinate the federal fish recovery and water quality efforts in order to improve the Columbia River Basin aquatic ecosystem, and coordinate execution of federal trust and treaty responsibilities to Basin Native American tribes. The Caucus accomplishes these purposes consistent with each member agency’s missions and responsibilities. For more information, visit www.salmonrecovery.gov

Are Your Fireworks Legal?

Making an improvised explosive device is a gross misdemeanor. A gross misdemeanor can bring a fine of up to $5,000 and/or one year in prison.
If property was damaged, it could be considered a property crime which is malicious mischief.
If used to blow up something, it could be considered a destructive device which is a felony.
If someone was hurt by the device, a person could be charged with bodily harm and assault, depending on intent.
Take Responsibility: Personal fireworks require personal responsibility.

Be sure the fireworks you purchase are legal to possess and discharge. Know the dates and times fireworks are allowed in your community.
Set family boundaries. Talk with family members and guests about the fireworks laws for your area. Laws restricting or banning the use of fireworks in cities and counties are listed on the fireworks website at http://www.wsp.wa.gov/fire/docs/fireworks/ordinances.pdf
Stay away from illegal explosive devices such as M80’s and M100’s. These items are not fireworks, they are illegal explosive devices. The damage they cause can be devastating and life altering.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal is a Bureau of the Washington State Patrol, providing fire and life safety services to the citizens of Washington State including inspections of state licensed facilities, plan review of school construction projects, licensing of fire sprinkler contractors and pyrotechnic operators, training Washington State’s firefighters, and collecting emergency response data.

Hoquiam Farmers Market News – Silver Turtle Edition

There are those who insist upon having a tent for camping. P’shaw, I say! A tent is a welcome luxury, a cozy extra, but it is certainly not a necessity. I spent my entire childhood hiking and camping, and our family never did own a tent. I admit, I was a victim of tent envy. I love the tent my husband brought to our marriage. What joy it is to wake up dry, even when the rain is streaming down the outside of the tent. As a child, we carried thin plastic sheets to wrap our sleeping bags against the elements. Believe me, the elements scored many a major victory.
So, if you do have a tent, count yourself lucky!

Scout around your backyard for the perfect place to pitch the tent. Avoid any steps or stairs that might cause a middle of the night fall. If you have a safe place for building a campfire, get the firewood ready, and sharpen some sticks for marsh mallow roasting. You don’t want to be doing the sharpening by flashlight.
Meal planning is very important, especially if you are trying for the authentic outdoor experience. The truth is, anything that you cook over a campfire is going to taste delicious, especially if you’ve spent the day hiking or playing tag. Aluminum foil is your best friend for camp cooking.
Make a Silver Turtle for dinner;

On a piece of foil place a hamburger patty, potatoes, carrots, onions, salt, pepper, and a dollop of butter.
Fold foil around turtle, and cook in the coals for twenty minutes.

As we all know, the real food comes after the meat and veggies- dessert! And what is the classic all American camping dessert? S’Mores, of course!
Just in case you’ve forgotten how;
Top one graham cracker square with half a Hershey®’s Milk Chocolate Bar; set aside. Toast a large marshmallow over a hot campfire or fire pit using a long-handled fork or stick. Once toasted, carefully slide marshmallow onto chocolate-topped graham cracker square. Top with remaining graham cracker half and gently press together.
If you keep dropping your marshmallow into the fire, simply wrap the untoasted S’More in aluminum foil, put it in the campfire coals, wait about 5 minutes for the marshmallow to get nice and gooey. The only thing missing is the charred skin.

The Fourth of July is only days away. The Aderdeen Splash Festival takes place at Morrison Park, with all sorts of family fun- inflatable games, a children’s carnival, lots of musical entertainment, a magician, and jugglers! It begins at 2pm and culminates with a fabulous fireworks show over the Chehalis River.

The Hoquiam Farmers Market is offering a build-up to the big day. We are celebrating on July 3rd ! Nancy will be making Strawberry Shortcake, reason enough to celebrate. After all, shopping needs to be done for the weekend, make it a festive experience! Anyone interested in having an outside booth for the 3rd needs to call the market to reserve a canopy tent. For only $10.00, you may set up one of our canopies and sell your products. We encourage homemade, homegrown items, crafts, artwork-unique local talent is welcome! Give us a call at 538-9747.
Remember ; ‘ There is more to life than increasing its speed’- Mahatma Gandi

Barbara Bennett Parsons, manager of the Hoquiam Farmers Market
open Wed. Thru Sun., Deidra’s Deli open Mon. Thru Sat.

Tsunami Siren Test Scheduled for Monday, July 5th

In actual events, the AHAB sirens will sound a constant tone for three continuous minutes, and may be followed by a verbal message. Both the Westminster chimes and the actual warning tone can be heard by visiting the PCEMA website at www.co.pacific.wa.us/pcema and clicking on the Tsunami tab.

There are currently twelve AHAB sirens installed in Pacific County located in the areas of North Cove, Bay Center, Ilwaco, Seaview, Long Beach, Surfside, and Ocean Park. Sirens are not designed to be heard indoors and the sound may also be impacted by adverse weather. Residents are encouraged to have alternate methods of warning such as NOAA weather radios, which are tested weekly and can be heard indoors. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Hoquiam Farmers Market Seeks Vendors

The Hoquiam Farmers Market is offering the deal of the summer this Saturday, July 3rd! We have outdoor canopies, but we don’t have any outdoor vendors! For only $10.00 you may reserve a canopy for the day and sell your wonderful handcrafted or homegrown items. Our only request? That you set up your canopy, guided by our expert direction!
Perhaps you have a friend who makes jewelry and you make aprons- combine a booth! Let’s make July 3rd a festive and exciting day and out a bit of extra money in your pocket.
To reserve your booth today, contact Barbara at 532-3235
The Hoquiam Farmers Market is located at 1958 Riverside in Hoquiam, just before the bridges. Homemade Strawberry Shortcake from Nancy’s Bakery will be sold on Saturday! Vegetables are coming in, and our Plant Tables are laden with plants for your garden. Right now we have more than 100 Tomato Plants alone!