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Articles by Bill Lambrecht

Navy ‘Doomsday Machine’ meets its match: A bird

       The Navy’s E6B Mercury assigned to the Naval Air Station Patuxent River is the aircraft that would serve as a communications hub for ballistic missile submarines in the event of a nuclear attack.

         It is 42 feet tall, has a wingspan of 148 feet and a range of 6,600 miles. Built by Boeing to be the airborne command post for U.S. Strategic Forces, it cost $142 million.

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O.C. declares victory over seagulls

        Like some Ocean City beachgoers, gulls there are downright rude. The boldest of them swoop down to snatch chips, fries and whole pieces of pizza.      Laughing gulls deride you.

         But the aggression waned after the city’s decision to hire falcons to restore order. Sea gulls known to bully humans want nothing to do with fearsome birds of prey.

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In Pittsburgh, Shucking for the Chesapeake

      A good chunk of Pennsylvania drains into the Chesapeake, which is why Maryland and Virginia routinely complain about half-hearted efforts to curb the flow of farm chemicals flowing down the Susquehanna River.

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Canadian company to blow past menhaden ­harvest cap

      Omega Protein Corp., which has battled for years to harvest more menhaden from Chesapeake Bay, says it intends to exceed recommendations from the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission for the company’s takes this year.

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Lionfish “Taking Over the Atlantic”

       We encountered a lionfish in the Gulf of Mexico two years ago, and they still swim around in bad dreams.

            They look like no other sea creature, colored like a VW love bus from the 1960s but with venomous spines that protrude like spears.

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1.3 million acres protected this decade

      At a time when preservation efforts are being diminished, from monuments in the West to endangered and threatened species, a report this week from the Chesapeake Conservation Partnership offered good news.

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Must we eat our way out of this problem?

     Stopping at Bob Evans Seafood in Shady Side, Lou Hyde reports he routinely finds blue catfish in his 240 crab pots in Herring Bay. Some of the horned invaders are so fat that he tears up his pots cutting them loose.
      Mick Blackistone, fishmonger, worries that they’re eating juvenile crabs.
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Gathering Garlic

I followed Bay Gardener Frank Gouin's advice about using compost and was rewarded. In the past, I was stingy about feeding my garlic and, come harvest, some of the bulbs weren’t much bigger than marbles. In November (a bit late), I planted German Porcelain, Musik, Spanish Roja and an Italian red variety in well-composted soil. On two or three occasions afterward I top-dressed with compost, digging in just a bit....