The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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May 1, 2014

Spring pulse of the river

The Mississippi River’s spring pulse is upon us, bringing both good and bad news. Flooding has been tempered by slow snow melt in the north. Flooding has benefits in that it removes trash that litters the shoreline and either pushes it a little higher on the shore or sends it to our neighbors down south. Extended periods of high water contribute to increased sedimentation and filling in of backwaters, which is a chronic problem in our area.

The spring high water provides perfect conditions for Asian carp, bigheads and silvers, to migrate upriver. These Asian invaders escaped from Arkansas fish farms in the 1970s and began their trek north, south, east and west. They compete directly with our native fish in their diet of phytoplankton and have taken over much of the Illinois River fishery. There have been infrequent reports of Asian carp this far north on the Mississippi River. However, in April, a 36- inch, 21-pound silver carp was caught in Dubuque and in a nearby area Asian carp eggs and embryos were discovered. A 73-pound bighead was caught in Sabula Lake in June 2012. Monster bigheads can weigh 90 pounds and measure 60 inches long.

Silver carp are the notorious flying fish that leap from the water in large numbers when a passing boat’s motor excites them. Accidents with humans are common when boaters, skiers, and tubers are hit by the flying fish. Two underwater electric barriers span the Sanitary Ship Canal near Chicago and emit shock waves to keep these invasive carp from entering Lake Michigan and impacting the multi-million dollar fishing industry.

The great white trawlers, American white pelicans, have returned in large numbers and grace the shorelines and skylines with their synchronized swimming and aerial acrobatics. They arrived on the trailing edge of ice, taking advantage of cold water temperatures to scoop up slow moving fish. The pelicans are nesting on several island sandy beaches located north of Clinton in Pool 13. They are joined by their colonial nesting buddies, great blue herons, great egrets and double-crested cormorants. These islands are the only known white pelican nesting colonies on the Upper Mississippi River.

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  • Students get first-hand look at non-profits CLINTON — An upcoming event will showcase Clinton area’s non-profits to incoming Ashford University students.The second Fresh START (Serving to Achieve Results Together) event will be held Saturday, Aug. 16. Students and staff members will serve at v

    July 23, 2014

  • The Clinton Herald Jim Miller Low-cost, free cellphone options for seniors DEAR SAVVY SENIOR: What are the cheapest cell phone options available today to seniors living on a shoestring budget? I only need it for occasional calls. — Seldom Calling SeniorDEAR SELDOM: For financially challenged seniors who only want a cell pho

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Friend of the Fair Two honored as 'Friends' MORRISON, Ill. — The Whiteside County Fair recently announced its 2014 Friend of the Fair. Paul Vock and Dan Heusinkveld are this year’s honorees. The two men have been involved with the fair for decades.Vock started with the fair in 1971 as the Heav

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bice Nurses earn Daisy awards

    CLINTON — Two Clinton nurses recently earned Daisy awards.Mercy Medical Center nurses Jodie Atkinson and Kristen Bice earned the awards that is rewarded to extraordinary nurses. Atkinson began her career in nursing at Mercy Medical Center in 1995 on

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Revolver goes for $400 at auction CLINTON — Selling in two locations on June 21 proved to be a winner. I was selling in the first location with my son Jon and we had a strong bidding crowd. The second location had Jeff Lohr and Bill McWilliams holding firm with a nice crowd of bidder

    July 19, 2014

  • Sawmill New event cruises into Clinton CLINTON — Three Gateway-area locations are joining together in August for a river heritage event.The event will be held Aug. 3 and will feature a Blue Heron river cruise, a Sawmill Museum tour and a de Immigrant Windmill tour in Fulton, Illinois. The

    July 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • Minnick Ashford director appointed to commission CLINTON —The Ashford University campus director has been appointed to a volunteer commission.Charlie Minnick, vice president/campus director of Ashford University, has been appointed by Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad to the Iowa Commission on Volunteer Ser

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Summer lunch menus (July 21 to 25)

    Summer lunch menus at Jefferson and Bluff Elementary Schools, and Generations Area Agency on Aging

    July 17, 2014

  • Ax throw, log climb at Adirondack lumberjack class PAUL SMITHS, N.Y. — Ax throwing is encouraged in lumberjack class. It’s also OK to dump your classmate in the lake — as long as you’re both frantically trying to stay upright on a floating log.The annual Adirondack Woodsmen’s School is being held thi

    July 17, 2014

  • Locally-grown foods look to bigger business

    Once a niche business, locally grown foods aren't just for farmers markets anymore.

    July 16, 2014

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