Week of April 23, 2007
|2nd Amendment Issues|
IRVINE, CA — A type of omega-3 fatty acid may slow the growth of two brain lesions that are hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease, UC Irvine scientists have discovered. The finding suggests that diets rich in docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) can help prevent the development of Alzheimer's disease later in life.
This study with genetically modified mice is the first to show that DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid, can slow the accumulation of tau, a protein that leads to the development of neurofibrillary tangles. Such tangles are one of two signature brain lesions of Alzheimer's disease. DHA also was found to reduce levels of the protein beta amyloid, which can clump in the brain and form plaques, the other Alzheimer's lesion. The research appeared in the April 18 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.
Previous studies have shown that DHA may have therapeutic value for Alzheimer's patients, but this research is among the first to show that it may delay the onset of the disease. DHA is found in fish, eggs, organ meats, micro-algae, fortified foods and food supplements.
"We are greatly excited by these results, which show us that simple changes in diet can positively alter the way the brain works and lead to protection from Alzheimer's disease pathology," said Frank LaFerla, professor of neurobiology and behavior and co-author of the study.
LaFerla and his research team studied the effects of DHA in mice bred to develop the plaques and tangles associated with Alzheimer's disease. Mice in the control group were given food that mimics a typical American diet, with the ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3 fatty acids being 10:1. Studies indicate that a proper ratio is important to maintain health, with the ideal being 3:1 to 5:1. Typical Western diets contain unhealthy ratios ranging from 10:1 to 30:1. Omega-6 fatty acids are found in corn, peanut and sunflower oils.
Mice in three test groups were given food with a 1:1 ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3 fatty acids. One of these groups received supplemental DHA only, and two groups received DHA plus additional omega-6 fatty acids. After three months, mice in all of the test groups had lower levels of beta amyloid and tau than mice in the control group, but at nine months, only mice on the DHA diet had lower levels of both proteins. These results suggest that DHA works better on its
own than when paired with omega-6 fatty acids.
The scientists also determined the mechanism by which DHA leads to lower levels of beta amyloid. DHA, they found, leads to lower levels of presenilin, an enzyme responsible for cutting beta amyloid from its parent, the amyloid precursor protein. Without presenilin, beta amyloid cannot be generated. When clumped into plaques, beta amyloid disrupts communication between cells and leads to symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
This latest study adds to growing evidence that diet and lifestyle changes may reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. LaFerla and his team have previously shown that short but repeated learning sessions can slow the physical progression of Alzheimer's in mice, suggesting that the elderly can delay onset of the disease by keeping their minds active. The team also found that stress hormones appear to rapidly exacerbate the formation of plaques and tangles, suggesting that managing stress could slow the progression of Alzheimer's.
"Combined with mental stimulation, exercise, other dietary intakes, and avoiding stress and smoking, we believe that people can significantly improve their odds against this disease," said Kim Green, scientist and lead author on the DHA, learning and stress studies.
Alzheimer's is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects more than 4.5 million adults in the United States. With an aging population, that number could approach 20 million by 2050. Five percent of people older than 65 have Alzheimer's, and up to one-half of people are affected by age 80.
UCI scientists Hilda Martinez-Coria and Hasan Khashwji, along with Martek Biosciences Corp. researchers Eileen Hall, Karin Yurko-Mauro and Lorie Ellis worked on this study.
Martek funded the study, and two clinical trials evaluating DHA are under way. The first trial, sponsored by Martek and the National Institute on Aging and conducted by the Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study, is examining the effects of DHA in slowing the progression of cognitive and functional decline in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease. The second trial, also sponsored by Martek, is evaluating the effects of DHA on age-related cognitive decline in healthy, older adults with mild memory complaints.
Temperatures generally rose across the Great Lakes basin this week finally bringing temperatures to near normal. Precipitation was minimal with some localized events providing about 0.25 inch of rain. Due to high pressure over northern Ontario look for favorable weather to continue, at least through the early part of next week.
Lake Level Conditions:
Presently, Lake Superior is 13 inches below its level of a year ago, while Lake Michigan-Huron is at the same level as it was last year. Lakes St. Clair, Erie, and Ontario are 4 to 8 inches above last year’s water levels. All of the Great Lakes, with the exception of Lake Erie, are forecasted to rise 2 to 3 inches over the next month. Lake Erie is predicted to remain at the same level. During the next few months, Lake Superior is projected to remain well below its water level of a year ago, while water levels of the remaining lakes are expected to be similar or slightly above last year’s levels. See our Daily Levels web page for more water level information.
Current Outflows/Channel Conditions:
Outflow from the St. Marys River is predicted to be well below average for April. Flows through the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers are also predicted to be lower than average this month. Flow in the Niagara River, as well as the St. Lawrence River, is expected to be above average.
Due to abnormally dry conditions on the Lake Superior basin over the last several months, | Lake Superior ’s water level is currently below chart datum and is expected to remain below datum through September. Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels. Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings.
2nd Amendment issues
Gun-control advocates want to use international treaties to restrict rights in U.S., former Ambassador John Bolton tells the NRA members here. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports gun owners should watch out for threats to their rights from overseas as well as at home, John Bolton, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, told 3,500 members of the National Rifle Association Saturday night at the Edward Jones Dome.
Proponents of gun control have turned to the international arena, he said. They hope to use international treaties that deal with small arms and light weapons to obtain to unwanted gun controls in this country, he said. "Had the NRA not come forward … one could only guess what our State Department bureaucracy would have done" on this issue, he said.
He pointed to a United Nations conference in 2001 on small arms and light weapons. Bolton said the United States' bottom line is that this country will not agree to anything that infringes on what he said was the constitutional right to bear arms. The international arena on gun control will become a bigger problem as the years go on, he said.
The United Nations instead should focus on nuclear threats from Iran and North Korea, he said. Negotiations with these countries are more dangerous than productive, Bolton said. The United States should not make general contributions to the United Nations, Bolton said. Instead, he said, "We should pay for what we want and expect to get what we pay for."
By Kevin Naze
A deadly fish virus likely already in Lake Michigan has Department of Natural Resources lakeshore basin fisheries supervisor Paul Peeters of Sturgeon Bay concerned.
“I don’t want to be Chicken Little, but the worst-case scenario is this could kill a lot of fish this year, and it could kill a lot of fish every year,” Peeters said. “The best-case scenario is that there’s a limited fish kill, limited species and limited duration — a flash in the pan.”
Peeters was talking about viral hemorrhagic septicemia, or VHS. While it’s not a human health issue, the virus has caused major fish kills in the lower Great Lakes the past two years.
The DNR believes VHS is already in Lake Michigan. With the virus suddenly on the radar, samples from dead fish found in 2005 in Lake Huron were recently taken out of cold storage and found to be infected. One of the sites where dead fish were found was only about three miles from Lake Michigan.
Like the name implies, viral hemorrhagic septicemia causes bleeding. Dozens of fish species — yellow perch, muskies, walleyes, whitefish and salmon, to name a few — are susceptible. Some infected fish will develop antibodies and survive. However, after a period of time they may start shedding virus again, and spread the infection to others.
“We believe it can have severe economic impacts,” said DNR fisheries director Mike Staggs of Madison. “We’re trying to be proactive to slow or hopefully stop the spread inland.”
Beginning last week, Lake Michigan and Green Bay anglers and boaters have to abide by rules approved Wednesday in an emergency meeting of the Natural Resources Board. That includes draining the livewells, bilges and bait buckets immediately after returning to the landing. Thus, minnows — a popular bait for bay perch, pike and walleyes — will not be able to be legally saved for another day.
“There’s probably going to be a lot of discretion used in enforcement of these regulations, but this is a serious issue,” Peeters said. Staggs said the state can pass all the rules it wants, but it has to get the message out in a simple way that anglers and boaters will understand.
“We’ve got a $2.3 billion fishery in Wisconsin,” Staggs said. “I saw where a study on the Lake Winnebago system alone estimated the economic impact of fishing and boating there at $234 million annually. That’s basically one dam upstream from Green Bay, with a huge amount of trailer traffic.”
Eggs from Great Lakes walleyes, spotted muskies and suckers will not be taken in Wisconsin this year as a precaution. If the virus was present and infected a fish hatchery, all the fish would have to be destroyed and the
hatcheries disinfected. Losses would be in the millions of dollars.
Trout and salmon eggs have been disinfected for years with an iodine solution and will continue to done that way. Cold-water species like trout and salmon have eggs that aren’t sticky like cool-water species such as suckers, walleyes, pike and muskies. The DNR will be experimenting with a different type of solution this year to see if they can successfully disinfect cool-water species’ eggs, Peeters said.
No steelhead are being passed upstream of the state’s egg collection facility on the Kewaunee River this spring, and local fishing clubs will not be able to use their “Walleye Wagons” to hatch fry.
The state has taken steps for many years to insure exotic invaders don’t get into hatcheries, Peeters said. Fisheries workers even have two sets of boots and outerwear — one for working inland, one for the Great Lakes — to reduce the risk of bringing problems into the hatchery system.
New rules approved this week also:
• Require that crayfish, frogs, fish or fish eggs used as bait be purchased from a Wisconsin bait dealer; or are captured legally in the water being fishing; or captured in an inland lake or stream and used in another inland lake or stream. Leeches, worms, and insects are OK.
• Allow dead fish, fish eggs, dead crayfish or dead frogs only on Lake Michigan, Green Bay and tributaries to the first dam; on the inland lake or stream where captured; when preserved by means other than refrigeration or freezing.
• Make it illegal in most cases to take live fish or fish eggs away from Lakes Michigan, Superior, the Mississippi River or any of the tributaries up to the first dam or barrier impassable to fish. There are some limited exceptions; contact a DNR office for information.
Some Great Lakes insiders believe the virus arrived in the form of frozen West Coast herring, a popular bait in Lake Ontario for decades. Others think it may have been brought in the same way so many exotic invaders have arrived — in the ballast water from ships, either from the water itself or small fish species taken in and then released.
There have been reports from some of the other Great Lakes that the virus only kills a small percentage of fish, but Staggs said it’s way too early to say VHS is not going to have a significant impact.
“What we’re proposing are emergency rules to buy us another active season of boating and fishing,” said Staggs. “I have no idea in the fish disease world what is permanent, but we hope to have something permanent by next year.”
Annual recertification becomes one-time issue
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) Director L. Tammy Duckworth last week announced that the annual free hunting and fishing licenses for disabled veterans issued by IDVA will now be a one-time, permanent issue. The new policy will save disabled veterans throughout the state the inconvenience of a yearly trip to renew their license, which includes transportation costs and time.
The free hunting and fishing licenses for disabled veterans will be a one-time issue with no expiration date. Eligibility for the free hunting and fishing license remains the same: the veteran must have a service connected disability; be in receipt of a total United States Department of Veterans Affairs (USDVA) disability pension; or be in receipt of a military disability retirement pay and can present a letter from the
USDVA showing the veteran who would be entitled to VA compensation at a rate of 10% or greater if military pay was waived. Out-of-state disabled veterans are also eligible for the license. Those veterans drawing retirement pay only and have not applied to the USDVA for a service-connected rating, will not be issued a license until after the USDVA has made a service-connected rating.
The veteran must provide disability documentation that is no more than one year old to IDVA during the initial request for the license. Only when the veteran provides proof of the disability or pension benefits, the license will be issued.
Eligible veteran must visit one of the Veteran Service Offices for initial issuance. A full list of the state’s Veteran Service Offices can be found on IDVA’s website at www.state.il.us/agency/dva or by calling 1-800-437-9824.
Lansing - The Michigan Senate on April 18 passed a resolution seeking more federal help to stop the migration of the Asian Carp into Michigan waterways. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Gerald Van Woerkom, encourages the U.S. Congress to support legislation to help prevent Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes ecosystem.
The non-native fish were introduced in the South in the 1970s to control algae levels in ponds. In 1990, flooding caused the ponds to overflow allowing the carp to escape into the Mississippi River Basin. They are now said to be just outside of Chicago.
Because they eat massive amounts of food and reproduce at a high rate, scientists fear the fish could have catastrophic effects on the Great Lakes ecosystem, eventually passing through the lakes and into our rivers. The size of the fish is also a problem. They can grow to 60 pounds, and they are
known to leap out of the water when disturbed by boat motors and can injure people using lakes and streams for recreation. The problem is already being seen throughout the south, including the Illinois River.
To prevent the fish from entering the Great Lakes, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers activated a temporary electrical fish barrier near Chicago in April 2002. Work began on a permanent barrier in 2004, but the scheduled completion date of February 2005 lapsed. The barrier continues to undergo safety tests. It is not operating due to safety issues and a lack of funds.
Senate Resolution 15 urges the U.S. Congress to enact the Great Lakes Asian Carp Barrier Act. The law would require upgrading the temporary barrier, completion of the new barrier and continuous maintenance of both barriers. It would also provide funding for further research and reimburse each state for funds contributed to the new barrier.
Legislation has been introduced in the Michigan Legislature that would incrementally increase fees for hunting and fishing licenses in Michigan over the next six years.
The proposed increases for hunting contained in House Bill 4624 begin in 2007 and would be phased in gradually over four years until 2010, and the proposed increases for fishing contained in Senate Bill 406 begin in 2008 and would be phased in gradually over four years until 2011. The legislation also authorizes a 5 percent inflationary increase in license fees for 2012 and 2013.
In both bills, the current 60 percent discount that hunters and anglers age 65 and older receive remains at that rate until 2010, when the amount of the discount is reduced by 5 percent each year until 2013, at which time senior licenses will be 40 percent of the corresponding resident license.
The current license fee structure was signed into law in 1996, at a time when the Department of Natural Resources was provided more General Fund support in the state budget. Today, the DNR receives only 9 percent of its budget from the General Fund, and one half of those funds are for payment in lieu of taxes (PILT) that pass through the agency and go directly to local units of government. Approximately 76 percent of the DNR’s budget is restricted funds, which are limited by law as to how they can be spent.
“As General Fund support for the department has been reduced over the last several years, we have been forced to look at license fee increases so that we can continue the work we do to provide high quality hunting and fishing experiences that hunters and anglers have come to expect in Michigan,” said DNR Director Rebecca Humphries. “These increases will allow the DNR to maintain its current level of service.”
Revenues raised from license fee sales goes to the Game and Fish Protection Fund, a restricted fund that is used for the DNR’s wildlife and fish conservation work in the state. The fund pays for conservation officers, wildlife and fish habitat projects and field biologists, among other expenditures.
Without a license fee increase, the DNR will face an $8 million projected shortfall in the Game and Fish Protection Fund in 2008. The deficit increases to more than $40 million by 2010, which would result in significant cuts in staff and programs for the department.
Other significant highlights of the legislation include:
► Junior licenses for those ages 10-16 will be discounted 50 percent over the cost of regular licenses;
► The Natural Resources Commission will have the authority to discount any license;
► The age at which an angler would be required to have a fishing license drops from age 17 to 16;
► Nonresident license increases will take full effect the first year of the license package and will not be phased in like the Michigan resident licenses;
► A deer combination license will be offered that allows the holder to take two deer in compliance with that year’s rules. The price of the combination license in the first year of the license package is the sum of the price of a resident firearm deer license plus the cost of a second resident bow and arrow license;
► A new 72-hour or 3-day all-species fishing license will be offered to residents and non-residents. This will allow infrequent or visiting anglers to fish over a three-day period, such as a holiday weekend, without purchasing multiple licenses at a cost below what three, 1-day licenses would cost and below the cost of an annual all-species license. All-species licenses allow anglers to fish for all species, including salmon and trout;
► Youth anglers would be required to have a youth fishing license if they plan on keeping the fish that they catch. However, if accompanied by one or more licensed adult anglers, an unlicensed youth can keep the fish they catch as part of the limit of one or more of the adult anglers they are with.
Hunters and anglers who already purchased a 2007 license will not be made to retroactively pay for an increase, should the legislation be approved and signed into law by the Governor.
The Minnesota DNR announced a temporary fishing closure on three major tributaries to the Red Lakes to protect spawning walleyes. The Tamarac River from Upper Red Lake to the Beltrami-Koochiching County line, and Shotley Brook from Upper Red Lake upstream to State Highway 72, and the Blackduck River from County Road 32 downstream to the Red Lake Band of Chippewa reservation boundary line will be closed during this period.
These tributaries will be closed to all angling and rough fish spearing during the peak period when walleye are concentrated for spawning. Tributaries will be closed beginning Saturday, April 21. The duration of spawning is determined by weather conditions and in northern latitudes, walleye spawning is not always completed by early May. Major access points will be posted during the period of closure, and anglers interested in the status of the closures are encouraged to call the DNR area fisheries office in Bemidji at (218) 755-2974.
COLUMBUS, OH – Sean D. Logan, Director of the Ohio DNR, last week named David M. Graham the new chief of the department’s Division of Wildlife. Prior to this Graham was the assistant chief of the Division, overseeing wildlife and fisheries management and research, law enforcement and information and education. He has worked at ODNR for the past 30 years and served as a manager of the Division for more than 28 years. Graham will begin his duties immediately. announces new Chief of Wildlife
The Division is responsible for the management of Ohio’s fish and wildlife resources. It manages 155 named wildlife areas, and the fishery resources in 160,000 acres of lakes, 2,250,000 acres of Lake Erie and 451 miles of the Ohio River.
Graham, a native of Clarksburg, replaces Steve Gray who was employed by the department since 1976 and served as chief from 2003 to 2007. Gray retired in March.
Despite rollercoaster spring weather many game fish should have completed spawning
MADISON – Spring’s rollercoaster weather has been sending Wisconsin fish mixed signals, but it’s clear that the May 5 opening day of the regular inland fishing season should be another great time on the water, the state’s top fisheries official says.
“There’s a tradition to opening day that you just can’t beat, even though you can find great fishing at any time of the year in Wisconsin,” says Mike Staggs, Wisconsin’s fisheries director.
“Opening day is as much about being with friends and families and their traditions as it is about catching fish. This year’s a good year to take someone fishing who’s never been, or who hasn’t been fishing for a long time.”
Staggs, who was introduced to fishing by his father and grandfather when he was two, now continues the tradition by taking family and friends out on the water, particularly waters near his home by Poynette. More than 1.4 million people 16 and older are expected to buy fishing licenses this year in Wisconsin.
By Kevin Naze
Many anglers were quick to
blame predation by white perch and double-crested cormorants, but Donofrio
said it’s possible it was something as simple as the poor year classes. More
likely, he said, were a combination of factors. Things got so bad that the
DNR implemented a two-month spring spawning closure in the mid-1990s, a rule
that still stands.
Maricque said he’s
frustrated by a system that has been slow to react to the perch rebound.
MADISON – Approximately 3,400 people attended the 2007 Spring Fisheries and Wildlife Rules Hearings and Wisconsin Conservation Congress county meetings that were held in every county statewide on Monday, April 16. The hearings allow citizens to comment and vote on proposed fish and wildlife rule changes, Conservation Congress and Natural Resources Board advisory questions, and to submit resolutions for rule changes they would like to see in the future.
Statewide hearing results of the votes, which will be presented to the state Natural Resources Board in May, are available on the Department of Natural Resources Web site. County by county results, along with a precise attendance figures, will be available at a later date.
“Hearing results, along with written comments on proposed rules, and DNR recommendations are used to advise the state Natural Resources Board. This year’s results will be reviewed at the board’s May 23 meeting in Menomonie,” said Kurt Thiede, DNR liaison to the Conservation Congress. “Votes are non-binding and are presented to the Natural Resources Board to reflect public sentiment on proposed DNR rule changes.”
DNR fish and wildlife managers will spend the next several weeks analyzing the vote tallies and developing recommendations they will present to the board in May.
The hearings are held in conjunction with the Wisconsin Conservation Congress county meetings. DNR related proposals are presented to attendees by DNR staff. Following DNR business, the meeting is reconvened as a Conservation Congress meeting and congress advisory questions are presented and county congress delegates elected. The congress is an advisory body to the Natural Resources Board. During the congress’ portion of the hearing, citizens may introduce resolutions for consideration and vote by those
attending the hearings.
Among proposed rules discussed at the spring hearings, attendees voted 2,479 to 1,048 in favor of reducing the number of turkey management zones from 46 to seven. This would, according to wildlife managers, give hunters more options for hunting locations and simplify the permit application process.
Other hunting-related proposals that proved popular with attendees were requiring portable ground blinds placed on public lands to display blaze orange on all four sides (passed 2,626 to 886) and that ground blinds display customer ID or name and address of the owner if left unattended on public lands (passed 2,174 to 1,057).
Seven separate proposals regarding changes to boundaries of open and closed waterfowl hunting areas on the Upper Mississippi River National Fish and Wildlife Refuge were rejected by hearing attendees. DNR wildlife managers and conservation law enforcement officials had proposed changing state boundaries to match recent federal closed area changes in order to avoid confusion among hunters. Department officials indicated that they will consider the proposals and the vote as they prepare a recommendation for the Natural Resources Board.
A proposal to eliminate maximum size restrictions for landing nets proved popular with voters and passed 2,769 to 717, and another fishery proposal to increase the minimum length limit for musky caught on the St. Louis River and St. Louis Bay to 50 inches passed 2,101 to 895.
Two advisory questions asked by the Natural Resources Board on regulating use of lead shot for upland hunting had mixed results. Voters approved 1,740 to 1,591 a proposal to require use of non-toxic shot for dove hunting on DNR managed lands but voted disapproval of requiring use of non-toxic shot for all bird hunting other than turkey on DNR managed lands by a vote of 1,506 to 1,850.
The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the GLSFC, its officers or staff.
Reproduction of any material by paid-up members of the GLSFC is encouraged but appropriate credit must be given.
Reproduction by others without written permission is prohibited.
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