T.K.L., Berlin, Md
Tags: bird Berlin MD diet food
Jan 01, 2005
I was shocked and disappointed to read your opinion of golf courses. As a manager of a 36-hole golf course covering 467 acres of marshlands, woodlands, grass and trees, I can assure you that your opinion is misguided and unfounded.Our course is a member of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program. We promote wildlife habitats, apply plant protectorates in a safe manner, conserve water and provide outside recreational activities for our members. We are good stewards of our land.Our courses are home to many species of wildlife ranging from bald eagles, osprey, songbirds, deer, raccoons, fish, snakes, turtles and many others.The pesticides mentioned in the report "Chemical Trespass" are not used on our courses. Those materials have not been used in years, if at all, on golf courses.I share your love of pets. If you are worried about pesticide exposure to pets, you should check out flea and tick shampoos. The active ingredient in these shampoos is a registered pesticide, the same substance that we could use on
T.K.L., Berlin, Md Jan 02, 2005
Thanks for speaking for environmentally responsible golf-course stewardship. In arid parts of the United States, where golf courses squander vast amounts of water, your peers don''t have a leg (or tree) to stand on, environmentally speaking.Many golf course managers use a mixture of fertilizer and herbicides that are environmentally damaging and harmful to wildlife. Golf courses and private landowners who apply various "plant protectorates" (as you call them) add to the chemical load from commercial agriculture that is wreaking ecological havoc. Runoff from these chemicals is responsible for a "dead zone" along the Texas Gulf Coast that, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, covers 5,800 square miles of ocean (the size of Rhode Island and Connecticut combined) and has devastated the once-sustainable shrimp and seafood industry in this formerly pristine and highly productive marine environment.
G.C., Martinsville, Va
Tags: small pet Martinsville VA
Jan 01, 2005
Thank you for mentioning in your recent column that lawn chemicals are linked to cancer in dogs. I had a 10-year-old border collie/terrier mix who died of lymphosarcoma. When I researched the disease online and found a respectable source linking lymphosarcoma to exposure to 2,4-D broadleaf weed killer, I canceled our ChemLawn service. They wouldn''t believe me.
G.C., Martinsville, Va Jan 02, 2005
I believe you, and there is indeed sound scientific evidence to support your concerns. Neighbors with perfect lawns are not good neighbors if they do not use organic methods of so-called weed control. (Dandelions in my lawn make me feel good, and are good in salads, too.)For a report on widely used lawn, garden and household chemicals especially hazardous to children and animals, contact the Rachel Carson Council, Inc., P.O. Box 10779, Silver Spring, MD 20914, or visit them online at www.rachelcarsoncouncil.com.
G.R., Lanham Seabrook, Md
Tags: small pet Lanham Seabrook MD
Jan 01, 2005
Would you please give us some guidelines on caring for the male betta fish? I follow the guidelines on the Hibari Betta Bio-Gold fish food package. I would like information about the size of container needed for these fish.It concerns me that some people may not be taking proper care of them, as the male betta must be kept alone. An acquaintance of mine put his male betta in a community fish tank (among fish that are not fighters), and he killed them all.
G.R., Lanham Seabrook, Md Jan 02, 2005
Male bettas (also known as Siamese fighting fish) were selectively bred many years ago in Siam (now Thailand) to be highly aggressive for the dubious ''''sport" of competitive fish fighting (like cockfighting and dog fighting, which are still popular in some circles in the United States and elsewhere).Beautiful as these males may be, they have to be kept alone since they do kill other fish. Because of human manipulation that has made them into killers they are doomed to a solitary existence, all too often in barren glass decorator vessels and even in vases filled with flowers.Like any creature in captivity, they should be given a large living space that mimics natural conditions as closely as possible, with gravel, decorative rocks, vegetation cover and tank-dwellers that can''t be harmed, like snails. The water quality and temperature for all tropical fish must be maintained using a filter, aerator and immersion heater.I would discourage mass breeding and commerce in these poor fish simply by never purchasing