Those innocent-looking sippers are one of the Top 5 plastic ocean pollutants

The least you need to know about solar power

For more than 45 years, Bill Ticknor has kept the 326-year-old St. James’ Parish abreast of history

Plant milkweed to support this ­butterfly’s long migration

1,271 is this week’s magic number

­Put your hand where Nodosaurus tred

So many variables are at play it can sometimes be baffling

We arrived at our fishing spot at 9am, two hours after the predicted low tide. Consultations with tide and current charts told us that at our location about a quarter-mile below the Bay Bridge, the incoming tide would just be starting. It ­wasn’t; the current was still going out.     Anchoring and expecting the change at any moment, we set out our chum bag and flipped our baits over the side. After an hour with no tidal change and no action, we headed farther south,...

It’s not there just to look pretty

Good mulch should be dark brown, persist for at least one growing season, be compatible with all the plants in the landscape and control weeds by suffocation only. Superb mulch does all that plus providing slow-release nutrients to feed the plants it is mulching.     Mother Nature provides us with an abundance of mulches every fall. Fallen leaves and pine needles are excellent mulches satisfying every standard except being dark brown.  I have never purchased a bag of...

Seach the sky for Berenice’s hair and Ariadne’s crown

The moon wanes to last-quarter Tuesday, rising more than a half-hour later each night, providing an increasingly darker backdrop for sky-watching.     As the evening sky begins to darken, the first lights to appear are the planets Venus and Jupiter high in the west. Then you might notice golden Saturn aglow in the southeast. The next brightest object to appear is Arcturus, almost directly overhead.     Arcturus is the third brightest star in the heavens and is...

It’s a disaster!

Rescue pilot Ray Gaines (Dwayne Johnson: Furious 7) has saved countless lives. But he was unable to save his daughter from drowning on a family trip. Haunted by memories, Ray drove away his wife Emma (Carla Gugino: Match) and his surviving daughter Blake (Alexandra Daddario: Burying the Ex). Now he longs to have them back.     What could possibly mend this broken family?     How about a catastrophic earthquake along the California coast?     When...

At stake: The location, size and scope of Anne Arundel County public libraries

You’d expect this kind of action in a thriller borrowed from your public library. Not over it.     Instead, Anne Arundel County’s public libraries are the story in a showdown with high stakes: The location, size and scope of public libraries for the county’s 555,743 people.     On one side is County Executive Steve Schuh, now six months in office. His first budget proposes a JumpStart Anne Arundel Capital Funding Program to initiate “a new...

Open season on these “voracious predators”

Reader Jesse Ledford asks: “Are there any reports on snakeheads in the Patuxent River? I’ve seen one in a lake in Lusby that runs into the Patuxent.”     There sure are, and that’s not the only place. Scientists at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center have received reports of snakehead fish in the Patuxent, with some caught in the main stem near Jug Bay. The Potomac is prime snakehead territory. The highly adaptable predator has also shown up on...

Howl at the Full Moon

When summer comes, can fun be far behind? We hope not. With 15 weeks stretching before us, summer seems endless. But it will slip away unappreciated unless you reach out and grab the pleasures it offers. Don’t let it get away! For each of those 15 weeks, we feature one fine way to have fun. I bet you’ve got more. To share your ideals for summer fun, email stories and photos to editor@bayweekly.com Week 1, May 29-June 4: Howl at the Full Moon     Earth’s only...

No matter which county issued your card, you can use any library in Maryland

Libraries are this week’s feature story, specifically Anne Arundel public libraries, which have come to the fork in the road and must, as Yogi Berra said, take it.     Wherever you live, this story of one county’s conflict touches you. For there’s magic in your Maryland library card. No matter what library issued it, your card opens the door to every public library in the state. Wherever you roam, whatever special collections you want to browse, you’re a...

When enough people choose to help, large problems can be solved

The ecology of the planet is experiencing a time of rapid change and ­uncertainty. But we all have one very positive decision we can make: to try to make a difference anyway. In other words, to give a damn; it is a choice.     It is a lot like the story of the old man walking on the beach covered with hundreds of starfish washed up on the shore. A young girl sees him tossing starfish back into the sea. At first glance it seems a useless endeavor, even if it does make a...

Our atmosphere tints summer moons

The moon waxes through the weekend, reaching full phase Tuesday, June 2. This time of year the moon follows a low, lazy arc above the southern horizon. At such a low angle to the horizon, before reaching our eyes the moon’s light must cut through much more of earth’s atmosphere than in winter, when the moon shines high overhead. Gases and trapped moisture within the atmosphere combine to tint the image we see a red, orange or yellow, which explains the names of June’s full...