Tiny wasp could give hope to Northern Michigan cherry growers

For the past 10 years or so, entomologists have been looking for a way to control the population of spotted wing drosophila, a fruit fly that feeds on healthy cherries and blueberries. They say they may have found their answer in releasing the samba wasp, which kills fruit flies by laying its eggs inside them.

Protecting your place: one man’s tribute to Northern Michigan

Humans, like all other animals, have an innate desire to find the right spot, an ideal place. Tim Mulherin, the author of Sand, Stars, Wind & Water found his sense of place in Northwest Lower Michigan during his first visit to the area 35 years ago.

Largest tally of snakebites in Michigan

Michigan’s only venomous snake, the eastern massasauga rattlesnake, has been suspected or proven responsible for at least 75 bites reported in the state from 2003 through 2020, according to the most comprehensive tally ever of such incidents.

Study raises health concerns for sand and gravel workers

A new study by Michigan State University shows an increase in doctor visits for shortness of breath among long-term sand and gravel mine workers in Michigan, compared to the rate for production workers in other industries. The state has more than 3,500 surface miners, 1,207 of whom voluntarily participated in the study. 

Conservation program partnership targets farms in three Michigan watersheds

The Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) was reinstated earlier this year and reimburses farmers for following proper conservation practices. To be eligible for the program, land must have a cropping history, or planting history, of four out of six years between 2012-17 and have been owned at least one year prior to applying.

Ridership, staffing challenges face local bus systems

Public transit agencies in Michigan are facing post-pandemic ridership and staffing shortages. The Michigan Public Transit Association launched ad campaigns in February to address those needs and has seen many great responses, especially on social media, but the association’s members still face hardships, and no one knows if they’ll get all of their riders back.

Deer kill count moves online

Starting this year, hunters in Michigan will have to report their deer harvest online. Wildlife officials presented the plan to the state Natural Resources Commission and said online reporting will provide more accurate information about what kinds of deer are being taken and provide it more quickly.

Allegheny River polluter cops plea in sludge ‘island’ case

“Glenn’s Island” in the Allegheny River in Pittsburgh was formed of sludge illegally discharged from the nearby Aspinwall Drinking Water Plant. And some plant employees nicknamed it for retired supervisor Glenn Lijewski, who is awaiting sentencing for conspiracy to violate the Clean Water Act.