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DNREC kicks off National Safe Boating Week May 16 to 22 in Lewes

DNREC News - Mon, 05/18/2015 - 09:00
DOVER (May 15, 2015) – With the 2015 summer season making its debut this weekend and plenty of good weather ahead, many boaters will be heading out on the water. As they do, the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Office of Boating Safety and Education encourages them to remember to practice safe boating, not just over Memorial Day weekend – but throughout the year.

Genetics Provide New Hope for Endangered Freshwater Mussels

USGS Newsroom - Mon, 05/18/2015 - 08:01
Summary: A piece of the restoration puzzle to save populations of endangered freshwater mussels may have been found, according to a recent U.S. Geological Survey led study

Contact Information:

Heather Galbraith ( Phone: 570-724-3322 x230 ); Hannah Hamilton ( Phone: 703-648-4356 );



WELLSBORO, Pa. — A piece of the restoration puzzle to save populations of endangered freshwater mussels may have been found, according to a recent U.S. Geological Survey led study. Local population losses in a river may not result in irreversible loss of mussel species; other mussels from within the same river could be used as sources to restore declining populations. 

Though they serve a critical role in rivers and streams, freshwater mussels are threatened by habitat degradation such as dams, alteration to river channels, pollution and invasive species. Mussels filter the water and provide habitat and food for algae, macroinvertebrates, and even fish, which are necessary components of aquatic food webs.

“Few people realize the important role that mussels play in the ecosystem," said USGS research biologist Heather Galbraith, lead author of the study.  "Streams and rivers with healthy mussel populations tend to have relatively good water quality which is good for the fish and insects that also inhabit those systems."  

Mussels in general are poorly understood and difficult to study. Because of this lack of knowledge, population genetics has become a useful tool for understanding their ecology and guiding their restoration.

More than 200 of the nearly 300 North American freshwater mussel species are imperiled, with rapidly dwindling populations.  Researchers are providing information to resource managers, who are working to reverse this trend.  USGS led research suggests that re-introducing mussels within the same river could reverse population declines without affecting the current genetic makeup of the population. 

The research shows that patterns in the genetic makeup of a population occurs within individual rivers for freshwater mussels; and that in the study area, mussels from the same river could be used for restoration.

“That genetic structuring is occurring within individual rivers is good news, because it may be a means of protecting rare, threatened and endangered species from impending extinction,” said Galbraith.  “Knowing the genetic structure of a freshwater mussel population is necessary for restoring declining populations to prevent factors such as inbreeding, high mutation rates and low survivorship.” 

Knowing that mussels in the same river are similar genetically opens up opportunities for augmenting declining populations or re-introducing mussels into locations where they were historically found. The genetics also highlight the importance of not mixing populations among rivers without additional studies to verify the genetic compatibility of mussels within those rivers.

The international team of researchers from Canada and the United States working to understand mussel genetics found similar genetic patterns among common and endangered mussel species.  This is important information for mussel biologists because studying endangered species can be difficult, and researchers may be able to study the genetic structure of common mussels and generalize the patterns to endangered mussels. 

Although understanding the genetic structure of mussel populations is important for restoration, genetic tools do have limitations.  Researchers found that despite drastic reductions in freshwater mussel populations, there was little evidence of this population decline at the genetic level. This may be due to the extremely long lifespan of mussels, some of which can live to be more than 100 years old. 

“Genetics, it turns out, is not a good indicator of population decline; by the time we observe a genetic change, it may be too late for the population,” said Galbraith.

By way of comparison, in fruit flies, which have short lifespans, genetic changes show up quickly within a few generations.  Mussels, on the other hand, are long lived animals; therefore it may take decades to see changes in their genetic structure within a population.

The study examined six species of freshwater mussels in four Great Lakes Tributaries in southwestern Ontario.  The species are distributed across the eastern half of North America and range in status from presumed extinct to secure. The six mussels were the snuffbox, Epioblasma triquetra; kidneyshell, Ptychobranchus fasciolaris; mapleleaf, Quadrula quadrula; wavy-rayed lampmussel, Lampsilis fasciola; Flutedshell Lasmigona costata; and the threeridge mussel Amblema plicata.

The study, “Comparative analysis of riverscape genetic structure in rare, threatened and common freshwater mussels” is available online in the journal Conservation Genetics.

For more information on freshwater mussels please visit Stranger than Fiction: The Secret Lives of Freshwater Mussels.

Two Disaster Recovery Centers Will Transition To Disaster Loan Outreach Centers

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 16:41

 

FRANKFORT, Ky.  – Disaster recovery centers in Lawrence and Carter counties will close Saturday, May 16, at 6 p.m. and transition to disaster loan outreach centers Monday, May 18, at 9 a.m.

The centers, which have been operated by the commonwealth of Kentucky and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, are located at 180 Bull Dog Lane (Lawrence City Community Center) in Louisa and 671 S. State Highway 7 (Grayson Utilities Building) in Grayson.

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Categories: Federal News

Second Disaster Recovery Center To Open In Jeffferson County

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 16:37

 

FRANKFORT, Ky.  – A second disaster recovery center operated by the commonwealth of Kentucky and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will open at noon Monday, May 18, in Jefferson County.

The new Jefferson center will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (EDT) weekdays and Saturday. It is located at 205 W. Wellington Ave. (Beechmont Community Center) in Louisville. The other Louisville center is located at 8501 Preston Highway and has the same hours of operation.

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Categories: Federal News

Second Disaster Recovery Center To Open In Jeffferson County

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 16:37

 

FRANKFORT, Ky.  – A second disaster recovery center operated by the commonwealth of Kentucky and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will open at noon Monday, May 18, in Jefferson County.

The new Jefferson center will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (EDT) weekdays and Saturday. It is located at 205 W. Wellington Ave. (Beechmont Community Center) in Louisville. The other Louisville center is located at 8501 Preston Highway and has the same hours of operation.

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Categories: Federal News

Second Disaster Recovery Center To Open In Jeffferson County

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 16:37

 

FRANKFORT, Ky.  – A second disaster recovery center operated by the commonwealth of Kentucky and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will open at noon Monday, May 18, in Jefferson County.

The new Jefferson center will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (EDT) weekdays and Saturday. It is located at 205 W. Wellington Ave. (Beechmont Community Center) in Louisville. The other Louisville center is located at 8501 Preston Highway and has the same hours of operation.

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Categories: Federal News

Bounce Back Faster from Disaster- Build to Code

FEMA Press Releases - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 16:03

CHICAGO – May is Building Safety Month, a public awareness campaign to help individuals, families and businesses understand what it takes to create safe and sustainable structures by increasing awareness about how building codes and code officials improve and protect the places where we live, learn, work, worship and play.

“We’re all at some level of disaster risk,” said Andrew Velasquez III, FEMA Region V administrator.  “It is important that we prepare now for the impacts that disasters can have on our homes, our businesses and in our communities.”

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Categories: Federal News

Delaware middle school, junior high students “sun their engines” in 2015 Junior Solar Sprint

DNREC News - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 10:53
DOVER (May 15, 2015) – More than 100 middle and junior high school students from 10 schools participated in Delaware’s 20th Annual Junior Solar Sprint Competition on Wednesday at Dover International Speedway in Dover.

DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife seeking great shots of Delaware anglers for annual photo contest

DNREC News - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 10:24
DOVER (May 15, 2015) – DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife invites angling and photography enthusiasts to enter the 2015 Delaware Fishing Photo Contest. The winning photo will be featured on the cover or inside of the 2016 Delaware Fishing Guide to be published early next year.

DNREC Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: May 4-10

DNREC News - Fri, 05/15/2015 - 10:16
DOVER (May 15, 2015) – To achieve public compliance through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police

Federal Aid Programs for the State of West Virginia Declaration

FEMA Region III News Releases - Thu, 05/14/2015 - 20:31

Following is a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under President Obama's disaster declaration issued for the State of West Virginia.

Assistance for the State and Affected Local Governments Can Include as Required:

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Federal Aid Programs for the State of West Virginia Declaration

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 05/14/2015 - 20:31

Following is a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under President Obama's disaster declaration issued for the State of West Virginia.

Assistance for the State and Affected Local Governments Can Include as Required:

Language English
Categories: Federal News

President Declares Disaster for West Virginia

FEMA Region III News Releases - Thu, 05/14/2015 - 20:26

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency announced that federal disaster aid has been made available to the State of West Virginia to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the area affected by severe storms, flooding, landslides, and mudslides during the period of April 3-5, 2015. 

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President Declares Disaster for West Virginia

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 05/14/2015 - 20:26

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency announced that federal disaster aid has been made available to the State of West Virginia to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the area affected by severe storms, flooding, landslides, and mudslides during the period of April 3-5, 2015. 

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Categories: Federal News

June 13 Deadline for Severe Weather-related Unemployment Insurance

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 05/14/2015 - 15:30

 

FRANKFORT, Ky.  —  Officials from the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet and the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced today that 10 Kentucky counties have qualified for Disaster Unemployment Assistance.

 

Kentuckians in Bath, Bourbon, Carter, Elliott, Franklin, Jefferson, Lawrence, Madison, Rowan and Scott counties who have lost work or whose businesses were damaged due to severe weather that occurred from April 2 to April 17, 2015, may be eligible for unemployment insurance benefits.

 

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Categories: Federal News

Disaster Recovery Center To Open In Bourbon County

FEMA Press Releases - Thu, 05/14/2015 - 15:25

FRANKFORT, Ky.  – A disaster recovery center operated by the commonwealth of Kentucky and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will open at noon Friday, May 15, in Bourbon County.

The center will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (EDT) Saturday through Friday, May 22. The Bourbon center is located at 525 High St. (Paris Municipal Service Building) in Paris.

Specialists from FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration will be on hand to answer questions and provide information on the types of assistance available to survivors.

Language English
Categories: Federal News