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NEWS
March 7, 2011
I read with interest your article about proposed legislation to permit dog owners to bring their pets to outdoor dining sections at restaurants ("More eateries may proclaim 'bone appétit,'" March 7).  The article also suggested that eventually pets might even be allowed to accompany their owners inside the eateries. I like dogs and cats. But I don't go on hiking trails, take walks around the neighborhood or go to festivals in order to experience other people's pets, leashed or unleashed.
ARTICLES BY DATE
HEALTH
By Scott Dance, The Baltimore Sun | July 18, 2014
State health officials are urging Marylanders to be wary of mosquito-borne diseases like West Nile virus and, now, the dengue-like virus chikungunya - raising concerns after it was reported in a Florida man Thursday. The chikungunya case is believed to be the first that was contracted in the U.S.; other cases had been reported in people who had recently traveled to areas where the virus is prevalent. That is raising concern over the possible spread of the virus, which is not usually fatal but can cause fever and debilitating joint pain and cannot be treated.
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NEWS
June 30, 2014
In response to R.N. Ellis' letter congratulating herself on the fact that she has never missed voting in a primary election and has always worked on some candidate or other's campaign: Please, Ms. Ellis, vote as much as you want but stop harassing me with fliers, phone calls, yard signs, giant billboards and - worst of all - those idiotic street waves ( "Distressed to see such low turnout," June 28). Volunteers like you tie up traffic, create litter and ruin the only time that most families have to spend together, in the evenings between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. I have been getting an average of four phone calls a night from volunteers or recorded messages from candidates, which increased to eight a day just before the primary.
NEWS
July 3, 2014
It's always fun to read a response to one of my letters to the editor, but the one from Sabrina Willis is a perfect example of an ad hominem attack ( "Election day pests," June 30). I have never done any of the things she alleges I do. I do not harass people, I do not put out yard signs or hang giant billboards (and I have no idea what an "idiotic street wave" is). I do not tie up traffic, create litter or ruin "the only time that most families spend together. " I do not stand in the road at busy intersections.
FEATURES
By JON TRAUNFELD AND ELLEN NIBALI and JON TRAUNFELD AND ELLEN NIBALI,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | October 1, 2005
I brought my peace lilies indoors weeks ago for the winter, and now their young leaves have holes in them. I see webbing in the plant base and slime stuff as well. I can't find what is doing the munching. Examine houseplants carefully before bringing them indoors. A sharp water spray helps dislodge many potential pests such as mites. Your peace lilies likely harbor slugs. Slugs hide in soil and leaf litter and come out at night to feed, leaving slime behind. Try the usual slug control methods, such as a small dish of beer to drown them or an empty grapefruit half, which provides a dark, moist hiding place to lure them so you can catch them.
NEWS
By Text by Peter Jensen and Text by Peter Jensen,SUN STAFF | May 26, 2002
Summer is coming, which means your backyard could soon be crawling with, well, things that crawl. Some pests are tolerable -- gnats, non-poisonous spiders, your brother-in-law. But some bite and sting and carry diseases. What's out there and how can the average person fight back? Before you reach for a bottle of insecticide, make sure you understand your opponents. Some pests can be deterred simply by eliminating their favorite habitat. Others need to be encouraged to leave the property.
BUSINESS
By KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | October 5, 2003
Fall is here, and it's not just people who are starting to pull up the covers and cocoon. Crickets are singing in the basement. Ants are invading many homes. Spiders are spinning webs in the corners of the living room. As the days and nights turn cold, other crawling things will be looking to get into the house for food and warmth. The best plan of attack starts now, early in the fall, with an autumnal version of spring cleaning. Maintaining a level of cleanliness through the winter will uncover insects before they can reproduce and will help reduce the need for chemical use. Here are some tips for keeping the house snug and free of pests.
NEWS
By Barbara De Witt and Barbara De Witt,New York Times News Service; Special to the Sun | June 29, 2003
Some bugs are ladies and, well, some are real slugs. As gardens come into full bloom, you'll meet them all -- the good, the bad and the simply annoying. And the more you fertilize and create lush growth, the more bugs you'll attract. Your challenge is to identify the garden party crashers who think of your flower beds as one giant smorgasbord and to fight back by using your wits -- instead of pesticides. While effective, chemical insect sprays also kill plants and damage the environment.
NEWS
April 21, 1991
With spring here, the prudent home gardener has several tasks facinghim.Following these guidelines can help reduce insect and disease problems later.Handpick bagworm bags from evergreen shrubs now through early June. These bags contain eggs laid last summer which will hatch into this year's hungry caterpillars. Insecticide sprays now will not affect the eggs in their protective silken bags.Clean up dead plant debris from around flower and shrub beds. Many insect pests and disease organisms winter over in plant trash.
NEWS
By Kerry O'Rourke and Kerry O'Rourke,Staff Writer | May 17, 1992
Gypsy moths have no appetite for county trees this year, which means the state will not spray to eradicate the pests in Carroll for the first time in 10 years.The lull doesn't mean the moths won't be back, however, said Robert H. Tichenor Jr., chief of the Forest Pest Management Section of the Department of Agriculture.Gypsy moth populations wax and wane in different areas for a number of reasons, some of which are hard to predict, he said.Weather makes a difference, and so does the population of white-footed deer mice, which eat the moths, he said.
NEWS
June 30, 2014
In response to R.N. Ellis' letter congratulating herself on the fact that she has never missed voting in a primary election and has always worked on some candidate or other's campaign: Please, Ms. Ellis, vote as much as you want but stop harassing me with fliers, phone calls, yard signs, giant billboards and - worst of all - those idiotic street waves ( "Distressed to see such low turnout," June 28). Volunteers like you tie up traffic, create litter and ruin the only time that most families have to spend together, in the evenings between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. I have been getting an average of four phone calls a night from volunteers or recorded messages from candidates, which increased to eight a day just before the primary.
NEWS
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | April 15, 2014
When a plant is listed as invasive, how far does it spread? How far apart should I plant bamboo for a privacy screen? How far? "Invasive" doesn't mean garden-variety nuisance — it means a foreign invader spreading aggressively until it has destroyed environment, economy, even human health. Sometimes, it is unstoppable. April is Invasive Plant, Pest and Disease Awareness Month, a time to consider what we lose when invasive species get in the United States. For example, Emerald ash borer has killed tens of millions of ash trees and is now in Maryland.
NEWS
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | March 21, 2014
A stowaway slug that caught a free ride on a shipment of Mexican mint bound for Elkridge was intercepted at Washington Dulles International Airport as the first of its kind to be identified in the Washington region. Considered a threat to crops and human health, it was captured - and the mint destroyed. An entomologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed the Philomycidae slug was a "new pest" for the region, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said Friday.
NEWS
By Carrie Wells, The Baltimore Sun | July 29, 2013
U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents intercepted a type of mealybug pest in an exotic fruit at Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, federal officials said Monday. The bug, formally known as Maconellicoccus multipori, could have posed a "significant agriculture threat" as it feeds on the juices of greenhouse plants, house plants and subtropical trees, Robert D. Hunt, a U.S. Department of Homeland Security spokesman, said in a statement. The mealybug was found inside a cherimoya fruit brought by someone traveling from India in December 2012.
FEATURES
By Kit Waskom Pollard, For The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2012
Cookouts aside, Labor Day is meant to celebrate the American workforce, and its achievements. But these days, even though people are more thankful than ever for their jobs, there's still room to gripe about the absurd, the mundane and the nearly unbelievable things they've done in exchange for a paycheck. Whether it's crazy responsibilities or a terrible boss, everyone seems to have a job-related tale of grief and woe. We invited Sun readers to share stories from their worst jobs.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, Special to The Baltimore Sun | August 8, 2012
My blackberries had some brown parts on the berries early in the season, but that seems to have gone away. Now I'm having trouble with those little berry "balls" turning white. Each of those little juice-filled spheres that make up a blackberry is known as a druplet. Brown ones occur when a tarnished plant bug has inserted its mouth part into a druplet here and there. That may happen early in the growing season. The juice from these berries are still useable for jelly, sauce or any recipe that puts the berries through a strainer.
NEWS
By Scott Dance | March 30, 2012
Stink bugs have begun to emerge from winter hibernation. They often take refuge in only to creep into your bedroom once the weather warms , as they try to find their way outside again. The pests have only been in this country since 1998, likely from China or Japan. They have only been in Maryland since 2009 or so. But their populations have grown rapidly since then. Try flushing them rather than squishing. And make sure to seal any openings to your house they might sneak in through.
BUSINESS
April 12, 1998
HUMANS AREN'T the only creatures who like mild winters. Mild temperatures and a lack of snow and ice are pretty favorable for all kinds of pests as well. Before the invasion begins, here are some tips to help keep your home pest free, courtesy of Erlich Termite and Pest Control of Baltimore:* Correct problems that allow moisture to accumulate. Fix cracked gutters, leaky faucets and get rid of low places where water collects.* Use caulk, putty or steel wool to seal cracks in foundations or siding.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, Special to The Baltimore Sun | July 25, 2012
Something is eating the leaves on my red twig dogwood. On some leaves, nothing is left but the center rib. I suspect it is a caterpillar that birds like to eat, because I saw a lot of bird droppings. Those bird dropping are the caterpillars. What you see are dogwood sawfly larvae, and technically they aren't caterpillars, which are only the larvae of butterflies and moths. They winter as larvae that are yellowish, but during the summer they molt a few times and develop a white powdery covering that mimics bird droppings so predators won't eat them.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, Special to The Baltimore Sun | April 26, 2012
When do I put down grub killer in the spring? Spring grubs are big, but they are barely eating now and not damaging your lawn. Don't waste your money on these grubs. Also, applying grub killer in spring sickens wasps that are predators of grubs. You've probably seen these beneficial wasps hovering over your lawn, looking for grubs to attack. Natural controls usually keep grub populations under control. A few grubs are normal and keep the predators around. Rarely is lawn damage caused by grubs.
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