Blog Archives

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Don Corrigan Talks American Roadkill on KMOX

In this April 26 interview on KMOX Radio, American Roadkill author Don Corrigan points out that his writing is in the great animal rights tradition of Joseph Grinnell of the 1920s, who was alarmed at the animal carnage on America’s new highways. Grinnell was a zoologist in California who wrote roadkill diaries.
 
Also in the tradition in which Corrigan writes is James R. Simmons. He published Feathers and Fur on the Turnpike in 1938. Simmons recorded roadkill destruction on New York highways. One of his tallies on Route 85, included: 13 woodchucks, 9 skunks, 2 raccoons, 11 squirrels, 4 chipmunks, 6 snakes, 3 turtles, 5 frogs and a single toad during one month.
 
Simmons declared: “Collectively we seem to think nothing of annihilating distance, time, wildlife and  occasionally ourselves as we step on the gas.”
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American Roadkill Book Benefit For Animal CARE-STL Group At Webster Groves Bookstore Slated For April 30

Webster Groves Bookshop, 27 North Gore Ave., will host a discussion of the one million animals lost to traffic carnage every day in America. The event, slated for 2-3 p.m., Saturday, April 30, will benefit CARE STL.

CARE STL is an open admission, no-kill animal shelter in the City of St. Louis. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of author Don Corrigan’s book, American Roadkill: Animal Victims of Our Busy Highways, is earmarked for CARE STL. Sale of road kill diaries also will benefit CARE STL.

“CARE STL exists to create a supportive community – rooted in collaboration, compassion, and caring, for people and animals,” said Cate Redfern of CARE STL. “We are dedicated to saving the unwanted, abused, neglected, and homeless companion animals in St. Louis.”

Corrigan will give a presentation on American Roadkill with a special emphasis on domestic pets and road safety issues. And astounding 5.4 million domestic and feral cats lose their lives on roads annually. About 1.2 million pet canines are lost yearly.

Webster Groves Book Shop will hold the event in its lower level auditorium. Seating is limited, so reservations are suggested by calling the library at 314-968-1185. A repeat of the program will take place from 3-4 p.m. based on reservation numbers.

Those unable to attend the program, but who wish to buy a benefit book for
CARE STL, may make their purchases on the first floor of the bookstore between 1 and 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 30.

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Kirkwood’s St. Hellbender: Hellbender Fans Recall Karen Goellner’s Care Of Critters

Karen Goellner holding a wriggling endangered Hellbender. Photos by Jeffrey Briggler.

By Don Corrigan

Fans of Missouri hellbenders recently gathered at the Saint Louis Zoo to honor the life and work of Kirkwood’s Karen Goellner. If working with hellbenders can get you into heaven, she is in a good place.

“She put in the hard work to help save the endangered Ozark hellbenders,” said Charlie Hoessle, a renowned herpetologist and director emeritus of the Saint Louis Zoo. “She traveled down to the Ozark streams with many of us who were interested in this species.

“Her late husband, Ron, also was keenly interested in amphibians and fish and snakes,” added Hoessle. “Before I went to the Zoo, he used to come in to my pet shop in Affton and look at all the creatures. Ron and Karen were great for each other and for the hellbenders.”

Hellbenders, sometimes known as “snot otters,” are large, aquatic amphibians. The hellbender has a flat head, wrinkly body and paddle-shaped tail. Its body is dark gray or brown with irregular dark spots along its back.

Like so many animal species whose survival is under threat, hellbenders have problems because of habitat degradation. This includes declines in water quality, erosion issues, silt covering their rocky living places and difficulties producing young in a damaged environment.

Even before humans defiled their favorite living spots, fishermen proved hostile to hellbenders. They viewed them as small monsters hurting trout and bass fishing, so they captured hellbenders and drove stakes through them.

Saint Louis Zoo experts and volunteers have intervened on behalf of hellbenders. They built a nurturing, artificial environment at the Zoo. These tank “streams” allowed them to thrive and reproduce.

The first successful breeding of hellbenders at the Zoo only took place after tender, loving care. They were destined to be reintroduced to their native habitat in waterways like the Current, Jacks Fork and Eleven Point rivers.

Group photo of the Saint Louis Zoo staff, USFWS, and Karen Goellner assisting with augmenting wild collected Ozark Hellbenders in the outdoor streams for captive-breeding. This was completed in the summer of 2011 and the first successful captive breeding occurred in the fall of 2011.

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American Roadkill Hits The Airwaves!

Author Don Corrigan was recently interviewed for the podcast, BLUE, regarding his new book, American Roadkill. He was interviewed by Joe Garritano and Steve Taylor for the broadcast.

Listen Here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1192145/10408024

Want to hear about American Roadkill from the author himself? Check out these events!

Author Don Corrigan will speak on American Roadkill at the Webster Groves Book Shop for a 1-3 appearance on April 30.

Author Don Corrigan will speak at the Washington Public Library at 6:30 p.m. in Washington, Missouri, on Tuesday, May 17.

 

 

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Rock Bridge Memorial State Park hosts spring wildflower walk April 23

Photo by Holly Shanks

Enjoy the beauty of spring wildflowers on a guided walking tour with the park naturalist at Rock Bridge Memorial State Park from 9:30-11 a.m. Saturday, April 23.

Learn how to identify wildflowers, discover what makes each one unique, and find out about their edible, medicinal and poisonous qualities. Space is limited, please register for the walk by calling 573-449-7400.

Participants should meet the naturalist at the Devil’s Icebox parking lot for a 1 mile hike on Spring Brook Trail. The walk covers both flat and hilly terrain. Participants are encouraged to dress for the weather, bring water, and wear sturdy shoes and insect repellent.

Prior to the hike you may participate in an open house at 9 a.m for Jewell Cemetery Historic Site, Rock Bridge Memorial State Park and the Midwest Section of the Katy Trail State Park.

Rock Bridge Memorial State Park is located 7 miles south of Columbia on Highway 163.

For more information on state parks and historic sites, visit mostateparks.com. Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

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Gardeners are invited to Powder Valley Nature Center’s Native Plant Workshop and Sale April 9

Mark and Diane Burger make cut flower arrangements from the wildflowers and pollinator plots in the two acres around their Kirksville home. Photo: MDC

This in ideal introduction for homeowners and budding native gardeners, with presentations from Shaw Nature Reserve’s Scott Woodbury.

Native gardeners can arm themselves with the knowledge and plants they’ll need to establish their own native gardens at a special event hosted by the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Powder Valley Nature Center.

Get a head start on spring planting with Powder Valley’s Native Plant Workshop and Sale, happening Saturday, April 9 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.  Admission to the event is free and includes both opportunities to learn about native plants and to purchase them for planting at home.  The workshop is geared for beginning gardeners or native plant-curious homeowners.

Headlining the event will be a live presentation from native plant expert Scott Woodbury, horticulturalist at Shaw Nature Reserve.  Woodbury will talk about the many benefits of planting natives and how to get started doing it.  He will offer his program twice, both virtually and in-person, from 11 a.m. – noon and from 1-2 p.m.

Visitors will have the chance for self-guided exploration at a number of educational tables set up at the event.  The tables will cover topics that include how to create a rain garden, identifying and dealing with non-native invasive plants, planting to attract wildlife and pollinators, and the value of caterpillars and mason bees.  Participants can also learn about nature journaling in their own home gardens, and how to use the iNaturalist Seek mobile app to help ID plants and animals.

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Radioactive Threat: War in Ukraine Shows Potential for Nuclear Disaster

Photo: Yvonne Logan

By Don Corrigan

Americans never envisioned that any military would be demented enough to attack an operating nuclear power plant, but then Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine. The world has been shocked to see nuclear power plants in the midst of heavy fire.

Endangering the integrity of nuclear plants is an attack on the ecological well-being of all of Europe and a large chunk Russia itself, according to Steve Cohen of Columbia University’s State of the Planet.

“Any species that can produce a Putin and give him an army cannot be trusted with the management of such a complex and potentially dangerous technology,” declared Cohen.

“As if attacking a functioning plant was not sufficient, Russia has also taken over the site of the no longer operating Chernobyl nuclear power plant,” wrote Cohen. “The Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident in 1986 spread radioactive materials throughout Europe and was one of the largest nuclear catastrophes in history.”

Europeans know all too well what happens when a nuclear power plant fails. Radiation from the USSR’s Chernobyl plant spread from Poland to Germany to Scotland. The disaster galvanized an anti-nuclear movement in Western Europe.

Now Ukraine is under siege, a country that relies on nuclear power for 60% of its energy, and Russians are pummeling and seizing these plants.

Lynn Sableman, president of the St. Louis chapter of the Women’s League for International Peace and Freedom (WILPF), speculates that the Ukraine conflict could mean the beginning of the end of the nuclear age.

It could also provide the impetus to clean up global radioactive contamination. Or, it could lead to a world nuclear nightmare.

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Editor Corrigan To Debut ‘Amazing Webster Groves’ This May

A new book, Amazing Webster Groves, has gone into pre-press production and will be available in May. EE Co-editor Don Corrigan will do a Missouri book tour starting in May with first presentations scheduled for book outlets in St. Louis and Webster Groves.

America’s Heartbeat can be found in the St. Louis suburb that’s been a Time magazine cover story, the subject of a CBS-TV documentary, and a magnet for pollsters at presidential election time.

In Amazing Webster Groves, you will discover Old Orchard, where prime real estate was sold out of President Ulysses S. Grant’s log cabin. You’ll find Webster Park, where a governor, a senator, and many of St. Louis’s business geniuses once lived.

You can read the true tale of the Webster TV housewife who nicknamed her hubby “Fang,” the man whose election to governor was held up when Democrats cried fraud, a zoologist who advocated for “charismatic megafauna,” an atomic age activist who collected 300,000 baby teeth for Strontium 90 detection, and a female author who won a Pulitzer at 24.

You will also learn about the town’s remarkable college, Webster University, and the revered Eden Seminary where theologians who advised presidents taught beneath its Oxford Tower.

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St. Louis Planting Calendar From Seed St. Louis!

Want to know when is the best time to plant your veggies and fruits in St. Louis?

Seed St. Louis has a local planting calendar to help!

Check it out here: 542c0a3c-46e3-432b-9bc4-0379f7d1453e.pdf (ctctusercontent.com)

 

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Washington Park hosts CCC Co. 1743 celebration March 19

Washington State Park team members are hosting an open house celebration of Civilian Conservation Corps Company 1743 in honor of Black History Month. The open house will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 19, at the Thunderbird Lodge. The African American Civilian Conservation Corps Company 1743 craftsmanship can be seen throughout the park.

Washington State Park interpretive team members will be on hand to discuss the cultural and historical significance of Company 1743 and their unique contribution to the park. Photographs and artifacts from CCC Company 1743 will be on display.

Black History Month 2022’s theme is “Black Health and Wellness,” and interpretive team members will lead a guided hike on 1,000 Steps Trail at 1 p.m. to support this initiative. This trail was built by Company 1743 and displays their stonework and highlights the park’s natural resources. The hike is 1.25 miles long over a natural surface.

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