August 2015

Where to turn for help and to help

Anne Arundel County Animal Control Shelter County animal management service handles nuisance animal issues, sponsors a Thursday rabies shot clinic, sells animal licenses and shelters found and abandoned animals temporarily before placement or euthanasia: 411 Maxwell Frye Rd., Millersville: 410-222-8900; Calvert Animal Welfare League

Highway construction is a long and bumpy road

Ready for the end of road construction delays on your commute?     In early spring, heavy construction equipment arrived. Graders, backhoes and bulldozers dug into a summer of frantic activity, working on a backlog of road projects to alleviate traffic hold-ups and increase safety, in  part by adding left-turn lanes. As most road projects are concluded with new paving, timing counts. All the prep work needs to be complete so that roads can be laid before asphalt plants close for cold weather.

Four days to a plan-in-a-nutshell

If you could design your hometown, what would you want?     North Beach townsfolk just considered that question, describing their ideals to a team of planners from the American Planning Association. The pros listened, and in four late summer days, returned a quick-sketch plan complete with start-up instructions.

Osprey and eagles are no fine, feathered friends

Reading by the side of Loden’s Pond in Quiet Waters Park, I was distracted by a considerable racket up above. Three osprey, I saw looking up, were dive-bombing an eagle.     This year’s baby osprey are still growing. By mid-September, they must be almost fully mature to make their long trip to the Caribbean and the Amazon, where they’ll spend their first two years. As the juveniles are not yet fully grown, they’re an appealing dinner to omnivorous eagles. To short-circuit that meal, mature osprey attack eagles.

Solar, wind and energy-efficient upgrades on the way

Sandy Point State Park is a fine place to soak up the sun. Soon those rays will be turning into energy.     The Board of Public Works approved a $535,870 contract with Baltimore-based Bithenergy to evaluate, design and install park upgrades, reducing total energy consumption by an estimated 45 percent.     “Once installation is complete, Sandy Point will be the first state park to host alternative energy projects of this size and scale,” says parks superintendent Nita Settina.

CalvArt Gallery September show doubles as an early-season coat drive

September is time to put away the beach gear and take a good look at fall and winter wear. While you make the shuffle from shorts to long sleeves, pull out gently used coats for CalvArt Gallery’s upcoming coat drive.

In a word, sustainability

In Chesapeake Country, newspapers can say, with Mark Twain, “The report of my death was an exaggeration.” Out and about, you can fill your arms with free paper-and-ink weeklies and special interest magazines, many of them stacked right next to Bay Weekly. What makes us different?     The answer is sustainability.     For me, that’s an easy word to define.     In part, it means that this week you’re reading the 35th edition of Bay Weekly’s 23rd volume, our paper No. 1,133.

These sensitive trees show you air pollution in action

If your Heritage birch is dropping yellow leaves, blame it on the Orange Alert of early August. Heritage birch is a clone of river birch, which is highly sensitive to both ozone and sulfur dioxide. Both of these gasses are present in an Orange Alert.

Finding feeding seabirds will save you time and speed up your catch

The seabirds, scores of them about 100 yards away, were wheeling, screaming and diving. We could see the splashes of fish wildly feeding just under the surface. They were not the explosive strikes of the big stripers we had hoped for, but it was impossible to ignore them.     Running ahead but well outside of the feeding school, I chopped the skiff’s throttle, turned and eased within casting range. My partner and I flung our lures just to the edge of the action. I was fishing a half-ounce Bass Assassin, and Moe, a half-ounce gold Red Eye Shad.

    The Thomas Point Shoal Lighthouse is a Chesapeake Bay treasure that belongs to all of us. It has a wonderful history and still stands where it always has on Thomas Point on the South River’s northern shore at the entrance to the Bay. It is listed on the National Historic Register as the last remaining screw-pile-style lighthouse in its original location and still an active aid to navigation.