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Environment & Science
3:28 pm
Tue June 5, 2012

MSU study finds anxiety makes some women's brains literally work harder

This electrode cap was worn by participants in an MSU experiment that measured how people responded to mistakes. Female subjects who identified themselves as big worriers recorded the highest brain activity.
(Photo by G.L. Kohuth)

A new Michigan State University study finds the brains of “anxious” womens work much harder, but no better than others.    The study’s authors say their findings could help diagnose and treat women with “anxiety disorders."

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Politics
3:09 pm
Tue June 5, 2012

WI Governor Walker faces recall... what does it mean for Governor Snyder

What will a Scott Walker recall mean for Governor Snyder's policies, and popularity, in Michigan?
wmrice Flicker

It's a big day in Wisconsin as voters in that state are deciding whether or not to recall their Republican Governor Scott Walker. Here in Michigan, however, Republican Governor Rick Snyder is faring a little better.

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Health
12:19 pm
Tue June 5, 2012

A new plan for minority and low-income children with asthma

The Obama administration has announced a plan to help minority and low-income children with asthma.  The program stresses local coordination across health care, education, housing, and schools.

About 1 out of every 10 Michigan children suffer from asthma. Minority and low-income kids experience higher rates of hospitalization, missed school days, and death from asthma.

Michigan has made progress over the past decade.  Hospitalization rates for children with asthma have decreased by 28-percent.

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Commentary
10:05 am
Tue June 5, 2012

Commentary: What To Learn From the McCotter Mess

If you want a measure of how politically screwed up things can get, consider the choice for Congress voters in Michigan’s eleventh congressional district could face this fall.

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Lessons from Isle Royale
9:00 am
Tue June 5, 2012

Watching the lives of wolves and moose unfold on Isle Royale

Rolf Peterson on Caribou Island, one of more than 450 smaller islands in the national park's archipelago.
Mark Brush Michigan Radio

All this week, we’re visiting an island archipelago in Lake Superior.  Isle Royale National Park is so remote you can only get here by ferry or seaplane.  It's mostly wilderness.  Cell phones don’t work here. 

Wolves and moose have the run of the island.  It’s an ideal place for people who study the big mammals.

"A nine month old calf.  It looks like it might’ve just fallen down the rocky edge and never got up."

Rolf Peterson has come across a moose skeleton.  Mourning cloak butterflies are lapping up sodium from the bones.  With a yank and a twist, Peterson rips off the skull. 

"I think it’s least disruptive if we just saw off the back leg."

Every bone tells a story.  Peterson can tell how the moose lived and how it died.  He can tell whether it fell and broke its ribs, whether it starved or was killed by wolves.  

"We look for any abnormalities in any of the bones.  And particularly, how big it was, what its early developmental history and nutritional history was, which is key to its adult health."

Over the past 54 years, researchers have collected more than 4,ooo moose skeletons on the island.  The bones offer clues about the moose population – and about the wolves.  Wolves got here by crossing an ice bridge from Ontario in the late 1940’s.

This study of wolves and moose is the longest running study in the world of a predator and its prey.  Rolf Peterson has been involved for 42 years of the study. He’s been here through the brutal black fly summers and the harshest winters. He and his wife Candy live in an old fishing cabin on the island for much of the year.

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Lessons from Isle Royale
8:30 am
Tue June 5, 2012

VIDEO: Isle Royale wolves "hanging by their teeth"

Rolf Peterson, John Vucetich Michigan Tech

Much of what the world knows about wolves and their behavior comes from the long term research taking place on Isle Royale.

For 54 straight years, humans have been closely watching the top predator here, wolves - and their favorite prey, moose.

Durward Allen from Purdue first started the study in 1958. It was originally designed as a ten-year project.

Rolf O. Peterson joined the project after it had been running for 12 years. And under Peterson's leadership at Michigan Tech, the project continued from there.

The film Fortunate Wilderness by George Desort takes a close look at the wolf-moose study on Isle Royale.

In it, Yellowstone wolf project leader Doug Smith said he can't imagine the science of ecology without the Isle Royale wolf-moose project.

"I think Isle Royale is the best example of how you need that long term work, because we're at a point now scientifically where everything is subtle. Everything is in the details," said Smith. "Things are changing rapidly too with threats like global warming and what not. And we need baselines."

Protected wolves of Isle Royale hanging by a thread

Rolf Peterson is now retired (Michigan Tech's John Vucitech now leads the project), but he's still an active "volunteer" as he describes it.

The research on Isle Royale has led to a better understanding of wolves, and how their presence helps put nature back in balance.

It has also helped to shift the public's attitude toward the predators. 

Once hunted to near extinction, wolves are making a comeback in the West, Southwest, and the Upper Midwest.

But here on Isle Royale, the population has gone from a high of 50 animals in 1980, to just nine today.

  • Six wolves in the "Chippewa Harbor Pack,"
  • Two wolves in the "West-end Duo,"
  • and one lone wolf.

Here's Rolf Peterson describing the current state of the wolf population on Isle Royale. (In the video, Peterson mentions of the nine wolves left, there is only one female that is in a breeding situation. There is one other female wolf they know about, but she's not of breeding age yet.)

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News Roundup
8:20 am
Tue June 5, 2012

In this morning's Michigan news headlines...

Morning News Roundup, Tuesday, June 5th, 2012
Brother O'Mara Flickr

Light Rail in Southeast Michigan?

Elected leaders and private backers of the proposed Woodward Avenue light rail line met yesterday with federal transit officials in Detroit. Sarah Cwiek reports:

Backers left the meeting with yet another 60-day deadline to try and secure federal funding. The so-called M-1 light rail project has had a lot of dramatic ups and downs in the past few months. Governor Rick Snyder and Detroit Mayor Dave Bing—at U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood’s urging—decided to switch an initial federal grant for the project to a regional rapid bus system in January. But M-1’s private backers, including Detroit businessmen Roger Penske and Dan Gilbert, have continued to push for the project. Federal officials are worried the rail proposal still lacks some key elements—including a regional transit authority to fund and operate it. Bing, Snyder and Penske said they’ll work on addressing those concerns before the two sides meet again in 60 days. The current M-1 proposal would extend just 3.4 miles down Woodward, connecting downtown Detroit and the New Center area.

New Pipeline Post-Kalamazoo Oil Spill

Enbridge Energy will take its plans for a new oil pipeline across the state of Michigan to state regulators this week. “The new pipeline will replace the one that ruptured in 2010, spewing hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude oil into the Kalamazoo River. The Michigan Public Service Commission will meet with Enbridge officials tomorrow to discuss the company’s pipeline plan. The agency approved plans for another section of the same pipeline plan last month. The planned new pipeline is larger than the one it will replace,” Steve Carmody reports.

Anti-Bullying Policies

Every K-12 school in Michigan has to adopt an anti-bullying policy by tomorrow. “Michigan was the 48th state to pass a school anti-bullying law. Martin Ackley is with the Michigan Department of Education. He said the law is very important to help students feel safe. ‘The bottom line is to protect the kids who are being bullied because it is definitely not deserved and it’s not helpful to the kids, to the school, to the families, to the communities and the consequences are dire,’ Ackley said. Each school in Michigan will draft its own anti-bullying policy which will include state guidelines,” Emily Fox reports.

Health
10:09 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Macomb Co. not waiting for state to outlaw synthetic marijuana

N.J. Division of Consumer Affairs

Officials in Macomb County say they're not waiting for the state to outlaw synthetic marijuana. And they're essentially deputizing the public to get stores to stop selling it.

Synthetic marijuana has been implicated as a factor in some recent violent crimes.   Public officials elsewhere in Michigan have asked gas stations and convenience stores to take the drug off their shelves. But Macomb County is getting more aggressive.

A new public health order bans the sale of the products - often called K2 or spice. County Executive Mark Hackel is asking people to download copies of the order from the county's website, and take them to stores selling the products. And he thinks they will.

"I mean, people have been absolutely, incredibly engaged in this because it affects their children, and they're seeing what's happening in their neighborhoods, and even in the schools," said Hackel.

Hackel is asking people to report stores that don't comply, and says law enforcement will then be dispatched to those places.

The violation carries a $200 fine and up to six months in jail.

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Environment & Science
3:49 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Enbridge officials meet this week with Michigan regulators on proposed oil pipeline

Stephen J. Wuori, President, Liquid Pipelines, Enbridge at the recent reopening of a county park south of Battle Creek
(Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Enbridge Energy will take its plans for a new oil pipeline across the state of Michigan to state regulators this week.

The new pipeline will replace the one that ruptured in 2010, spewing hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude oil into the Kalamazoo River.

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Sports
3:23 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Big Ten prefers "status quo", but is looking at expanded college football playoff

(courtesy of allposters.com)

Big Ten officials are seriously looking at a plan to create a potentially lucrative national college football playoff system.   Just how lucrative remains an unanswered question.

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Transportation
3:20 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Feds: We need to see more before we put money in Detroit light rail

An artist's rendering of the proposed M-1 light rail project.
m-1rail.com

Elected leaders and private backers of the proposed Woodward Avenue light rail line met with federal transit officials in Detroit Monday.

They left that meeting with yet another 60-day deadline to try and secure federal funding.

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Education
1:53 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Michigan schools to adopt anti-bullying policies this week

User: Working World Flickr

Every K-12 school in Michigan has to adopt an anti-bullying policy by Wednesday. Michigan was the 48th state to pass a school anti-bullying law.

Martin Ackley is with the Michigan Department of Education. He said the law is very important to help students feel safe.

 "The bottom line is to protect the kids who are being bullied because it is definitely not deserved and it’s not helpful to the kids, to the school, to the families, to the communities and the consequences are dire," Ackley said.

Health
1:15 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

MDCH unveils a new plan to combat obesity in the state

ObesityinAmerica.org The Endocrine Society and The Hormone Health Network

The Michigan Department of Community Health has a new plan to reduce the number of obese people in Michigan.  The Department announced a new 5-year statewide  program called "4 x 4" on Monday at the Recreation Park in Ypsilanti.  

The program wants to encourage Michigan residents to eat a healthy diet, exercise, get check-ups, and avoid tobacco.  The program will involve local governments, businesses and trade associations across the state. 

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Environment & Science
12:16 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Duck Lake Fire 72% contained

Remains of the Rainbow Lodge near the mouth of the Two Hearted River.
Michigan DNR/facebook

In a progress report released yesterday, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources announced that workers had contained 72 percent of the Duck Lake Fire after nearly an inch of rainfall on Saturday.

The fire, caused by a lightning strike 11 days ago, now covers 21,135 acres in Luce County. The perimeter of the fire is 44 miles long. Fifteen of those miles remain uncontained.

Out of the 141 structures within the fire’s perimeter, 136 have been lost. The DNR reported the completed property damage assessment as follows:

  • 49 homes/cabins (including a store and a motel)
  • 23 garages
  • 38 sheds/outbuildings
  • 26 campers

Stretching 11 miles south of the Lake Superior shoreline, the fire is about 14 miles north of Newberry and seven miles west of Tahquamenon Falls State Park campgrounds.

Click here to see the DNR's most up-to-date map of the fire perimeter.

The next chance of rain in the area is Wednesday.

- Suzanne Jacobs, Michigan Radio Newsroom

Series & Documentaries
11:46 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Facing the Mortgage Crisis

2009 Facing the Mortgage Crisis
Michigan Radio aired the documentary "Facing the Mortgage Crisis," narrated by Christina Shockley. We also hosted a web chat with guest panelists Kent Spencer and Gloriane Wiley of the Wayne County Mortgage Foreclosure Prevention Program. 

During the week of November 16-20, 2009, we aired American RadioWorks documentaries that explore how education during these hard times in America is central to economic opportunity and social mobility -- and to our individual and collective well-being. We also rebroadcasted Michigan Radio's "Facing the Mortgage Crisis."

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Series & Documentaries
11:43 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Generation Y

2009 Generation Y
Over half of all Michigan's public university graduates leave the state within one year of graduation. Michigan Radio Intern Lauren Silverman will probably be one of them. However, according to many thinkers, young college graduates are the people Michigan needs most. Generation Y Michigan takes a look at why young adults are leaving or staying in Michigan. 

Series & Documentaries
11:33 am
Mon June 4, 2012

The Health Care Debate

2009 The Health Care Debate
President Obama wants a health care overhaul in place by the end of the year. There's intense debate in Congress over what to do. Our series "The Health Care Debate" takes a look at different aspects of health care and insurance, with interviews by Christina Shockley.

Series & Documentaries
11:31 am
Mon June 4, 2012

How We Got Here: The Decline of Newspapers

2009 How We Got Here: The Decline of Newspapers
If you have a local newspaper subscription, it probably doesn't deliver what it once did. The series "How We Got Here: The Decline of Newspapers" takes a look at the uncertain situation of the newspaper industry.

Series & Documentaries
11:28 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Mackinac Policy Conference

2009 Mackinac Policy Conference
Michigan Radio provided special coverage from this year's Mackinac Policy Conference. Throughout the last week of May, we aired special reports on Michigan's economy and other topics discussed at the conference. "Hybrid Economy" was co-hosted by Michigan Radio's Sarah Hulett and Michigan Public Radio Network Managing Editor Rick Pluta. The program examined how alternative energy is changing what powers our cars, homes, and jobs, and how it may be the key to Michigan's economic future.
 

Series & Documentaries
11:25 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Michigan's Obesity Crisis

2009 Michigan's Obesity Crisis
In the Michigan Radio series "Michigan's Obesity Crisis," Charity Nebbe looks into the state's obesity crisis. She will explore whether where we live matters, how food policies effect the problem, and how the problem effects us. 

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