Special Report: KPVI Investigates Cyanide traps and the USDA | Straight from the Horse’s Heart

story by as broadcast/published on KPVI.com

“This is not the first time the USDA had a run in with the Gate City…”

It’s almost been two months since a Pocatello family lost their dog and almost their son to a cyanide trap set 300 yards behind their house. Since then the USDA says they’ve taken all the traps out of the Gem state. But that hasn’t changed anything to investigators who say they were never notified of the deadly chemical, meant to kill predators, planted around Bannock County.

The incident began in the Buckskin area back in March. Canyon Mansfield says, “I panicked and sprinted down to get my mom.” The 14-year-old and his dog Kasey were 300 yards away from their house. He describes, “Suddenly there’s like a pop and then orange gas spews out.” The Mansfield family dog died and they almost lost their son as well. Theresa Mansfield, Canyon’s mother says, “We didn’t want to believe it was from Cyanide poisoning, but deep down it scared the crap out of us.”

The Cyanide trap was placed on BLM land with no warnings in sight. Investigators found a second trap not far from the first. Bannock County Sheriff Lorin Nielsen says, “We’re not Alaska. There are wilderness places where people go. I don’t care what the purpose is. If it’s endangering public it shouldn’t be there.”

Since the death of Kasey there’s been a worldwide outcry. The Bannock County’s Sheriff’s office has launched their investigation. The city has also stepped in. In March Pocatello’s Mayor Brian Blad wrote a letter to the USDA asking them to stop manufacturing Cyanide Traps, or M-44’s, in the city. Since then the agency reached out to the mayor. He says he toured the facility, learned about their safety precautions and products “They’re going to continue to do their practice until congress acts,” said Blad.

This is not the first time the USDA had a run in with the Gate City. Seven years ago the agency was responsible for illegally setting “Quick Kill” traps, meant for Rock chucks within city limits. Obtained by KPVI in an incident report by Pocatello’s animal control, an elderly woman called them after finding a cat trapped alive in a “quick kill” trap or Conibear trap in her backyard. She admitted to the city she requested the traps from the USDA. She says at least three cats had been killed before and they were removed by the local USDA representative Todd Sullivan. Sullivan is the same man involved in the Mansfield investigation. In 2010 the charges against Sullivan were dismissed by a federal judge.

The city and USDA came to an agreement that they would not place Conibear traps in Pocatello without notifying the city first. The USDA declined to speak to KPVI on camera, but gave us a written statement answering our questions. They told us, the incident involving the Mansfield Dog is still under investigation and can’t comment. But claimed they had “107 M-44’s set on 16 properties in the state and all have been removed.” Our request to tour the Pocatello manufacturing facility was denied, they say because of security concerns.

The agency tells us the Pocatello location has been manufacturing M-44 deceives since 1969. And also handles, “Gas cartridges for fumigating rodent burrows, rodent grain baits…, predator lures, and repackages other products such as order control products and animal immobilization drugs.”

The sheriff’s investigation is now left in the hands of county prosecutors to find if any state laws were violated. In the meantime, the sheriff says this to residents, “We now have to be aware of our surroundings. If there is something that is out there that is not part of… leave it alone, leave it alone,” Nielsen said.

Source: Special Report: KPVI Investigates Cyanide traps and the USDA | Straight from the Horse’s Heart

A Festival of Books – Natalie J Case

I have a confession to make.  I have never been to a book festival or convention or other celebration of books.  Not as a reader, certainly not as a writer.  Some of the reasons for this are fundamental issues of who I am, namely the agoraphobic part of who I am.  Large crowds, even mediocre crowds in small spaces make me sweat, palpitate, hyperventilate and ultimately need to leave quickly unless I do an awful lot of prep work first.

So, when I show up on Sunday, June 4th at Civic Center Park in Berkeley, California, I will be attending my first event.

babf_logo The Bay Area Book Festival is in it’s third year, and while I’d love to be able to attend some of the talks and such on Saturday, I have other obligations.  But come Sunday morning, I will load up my cart with books and a table cloth (reminder to self, get a tablecloth), my tablet and credit cart doohicky plus a bunch of water and snacks for the day, and I will BART myself into Berkeley and find my assigned place in the park for the day.

Of course, I hope to sell enough books to break even on the day, but beyond that, my hope is that I can keep my agoraphobic anxiety down and that I get to meet new folks, talk about my books and other books.  I’d love to meet readers who are passionate about what they read and love.  I’d also love to meet fellow authors who are passionate about what they write and love.

If it isn’t too much to hope for, I’m going to hope that some of my friends and family come out to see me too.  It isn’t every day an author gets to do their first event like this…and if I’m being truthful, maybe having someone watch my table for a bit while I look around would be awesome too.

So, if you’re somewhere in the San Francisco Bay area and fancy some book loving come Sunday, June 4th, you should hope on BART and take yourself to the Berkeley Civic Center station.  The park is just a short walk away.

I won’t be too hard to find.  I’ll be the author with green hair, probably wearing a fedora or other hat, and possibly a Star Wars shirt, depending on my mood.  Come Say HI!

Source: a festival of books – Natalie J Case

What Does A Broken Crystal Mean? – Holistic Experiment

Source: What Does A Broken Crystal Mean? – Holistic Experiment

It happens to every crystal lover; that gut wrenching feeling when you notice a crystal broke. Whether it’s just a small chip or split into a bunch of pieces, crystals experience shifts, transitions, and changes.

Crystals can be very fragile, especially if it’s a stone that can easily disintegrate in liquids like Selenite , Azurite or Desert Rose. Many crystals have natural flaws and fractures which can weaken the crystal. Crystals can break over a period of time from regular use and movement.

Sometimes a crystal can break because you dropped it, banged it or it wasn’t properly stored during traveling. If this happened to you, just make sure to be more careful with them. It’s said that if you often drop things or bump into things it could be a sign of being ungrounded so make sure to meditate with your crystal.

Another reason as to why a crystal could break is the constant exposure of heat and cold. This can cause a fracture so make sure to keep this in mind when you’re storing your crystals.

I think there is no such thing as coincidences, so whenever a crystal break it could be because it protected me from some harmful negative energy or helped me let go of a specific belief that no longer served me. There is no need to feel bad about this happening, just be grateful that it has helped you throughout your journey and honor your crystal.

There are other times when a crystal wishes to become more than one crystal. As long as the crystal isn’t shatter into a bunch of pieces you can find those part a new home. I sometimes like to store the pieces in bottles and keep them around in case someone I know needs them.

 

What To Do With Your Broken Crystals

The first thing I do when a crystal breaks is to cleanse it. I’ve talked about different methods of cleansing crystals but my favorite is to bury them for a little while until I feel it’s ready to take it out.

You can also bury them in your garden and never take it out because plants and trees LOVE crystals. Some people like to put them in pots or use them as drainage stones in the bottom of the plant pots.

Other people like to throw the broken pieces in the ocean because the saltwater can help cleanse the stone and can lead them to their next owner.

You can also use the broken crystal pieces as separate crystals like, say, for a crystal grid. If you feel like you should give it to a friend or family member. Always make sure to follow your intuition whenever a crystal breaks