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Hunters enter guilty pleas -11/21/2014, 9:50 AM

Pheasant numbers higher -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

If the pheasant numbers are better, why aren't we seeing more? -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

KDWP&T set to woo out-of-state hunters -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

Federal charges filed against 8 in 2013 Graham County dove hunt -11/7/2014, 9:53 AM

Politics trumps science -10/17/2014, 11:50 AM

Diminutive burrowing owl briefly stands guard -10/17/2014, 11:50 AM

Rescuing the injured -10/10/2014, 10:00 AM

Manager takes to the sky -9/19/2014, 2:30 PM

Of dragonflies, new bad habits -9/12/2014, 9:51 AM

A real rarity -9/5/2014, 9:56 AM

Peak camping season ends with a bang -9/5/2014, 9:46 AM

Mourning the loss of the last passenger pigeon -- too many already -9/5/2014, 9:46 AM

Bird a top choice for hunters -8/29/2014, 9:22 AM

Doves all around -8/29/2014, 9:22 AM

FWS details ESA listing for bat -8/22/2014, 12:15 PM

Tales from the land of Don't -8/8/2014, 6:07 PM

'Kansas Fishes' hot off the press -8/8/2014, 6:07 PM

Pheasant tour off target -8/1/2014, 8:17 AM

Pheasant harvest falls again -7/24/2014, 11:02 AM

Biologist calls idea 'ludicrous' -7/18/2014, 2:13 PM

Appeals court exonerates Texas water board -7/11/2014, 12:01 PM

Survey finds more prairie chickens -7/11/2014, 11:52 AM

Hunting outlook up; duck numbers sharply higher -7/11/2014, 11:52 AM

New round of federal lawsuits at loggerheads with one another -6/20/2014, 11:34 AM

KDWP&T OKs regional ban on prairie chicken hunting -6/20/2014, 11:34 AM

KNRC not ready to give up -6/20/2014, 11:34 AM

Serenading a historic landmark -5/30/2014, 11:03 AM

KNRC set to ask for more money -5/30/2014, 11:03 AM

Kansas seceding on wildlife -5/9/2014, 8:31 AM

Kansas courts back federal endangered species law -5/9/2014, 8:30 AM

Review nearing completion -4/25/2014, 11:07 AM

Bat species should be studied, biologist says -4/25/2014, 11:07 AM

Bats an economic benefit for farmers -4/24/2014, 11:08 AM

Walleye smaller, still productive -4/18/2014, 11:00 AM

In the baking aisle, shoppers agree environment is critical -4/18/2014, 11:00 AM

Lawsuits lining up on listing -4/11/2014, 11:00 AM

Webster too low for irrigation -4/10/2014, 11:00 AM

-4/4/2014, 4:55 PM

-4/4/2014, 4:55 PM

FWS lists prairie chicken as threatened -3/28/2014, 9:47 AM

Whooping cranes reach Kansas; winter numbers up slightly -3/28/2014, 8:35 AM

Ferret numbers still tumbling -3/28/2014, 8:35 AM

Oklahoma, oil group suing FWS -3/20/2014, 9:59 AM

Divining rod for discs -3/20/2014, 9:59 AM

Despite valiant effort, no success in finding snowy owl -3/14/2014, 9:27 AM

Capturing the moment -3/14/2014, 9:27 AM

Kansas: Not so flat after all -3/7/2014, 3:49 PM

Rod, reel a good fit -2/28/2014, 7:53 AM

Spring just a snowstorm or so away -2/28/2014, 7:53 AM

At 90: Best deer ever -2/21/2014, 10:33 AM

Tests confirm 5 new CWD cases -2/14/2014, 10:13 AM

Senate votes to invoke 'sovereignty' over state's prairie chickens -2/14/2014, 10:13 AM

KNRC to deliver report, asking for more money from member counties -2/7/2014, 10:50 AM

Group flunks states, federal agencies dealing with prairie dogs -2/7/2014, 12:12 PM

Brownback ready to sue feds -2/7/2014, 10:50 AM

Big oil companies bankrolling conservation plan -2/6/2014, 10:50 AM

Audubon blasts 'sovereign' bill -1/31/2014, 9:49 AM

Feds again asking for listing comments -1/31/2014, 9:48 AM

Utilities enrolling in program -1/31/2014, 9:48 AM

Listing controversy continues -1/17/2014, 10:30 AM

Friends on the water -12/20/2013, 9:54 AM

Federal wildlife agency lays out rules for oil, gas protection -12/20/2013, 9:54 AM

A beckoning -12/13/2013, 9:08 AM

Listing more likely as FWS adds rules -12/13/2013, 8:59 AM

It's happening right before our eyes! -11/29/2013, 10:28 AM

Governor's Ringneck Classic draws a crowd -11/22/2013, 9:29 AM

Drought saps pheasant numbers -11/8/2013, 6:50 PM

Sporting clays sure to be hot at hunt -11/8/2013, 6:50 PM

Counties set to talk chickens -11/1/2013, 12:08 PM

Dangerous delight -10/18/2013, 9:44 AM

Coping with (more) bad habits -10/11/2013, 12:01 PM

Celebrating fossil discoveries -10/11/2013, 11:51 AM

Making a wish come true -9/27/2013, 11:39 AM

Prairie chicken numbers tumble -9/27/2013, 11:39 AM

Counties meet FWS, present plans -9/20/2013, 12:25 PM

Oakley man in pursuit of grouse -9/13/2013, 11:23 AM

Counties hoping to halt listing -9/6/2013, 11:54 AM

Going outdoors -8/23/2013, 10:15 AM

Wetlands no longer bone dry -8/16/2013, 11:46 AM

Duck numbers remain strong -7/26/2013, 11:48 AM

Updated survey, conservation plan upcoming -7/26/2013, 11:39 AM

Pheasant outlook not so bright -7/19/2013, 11:48 AM

High heat, strong winds finally show a beneficial side -7/12/2013, 12:05 PM

FWS delay reopens comment period -7/12/2013, 12:05 PM

Study refutes wind tower effect on greater prairie chickens -7/12/2013, 12:05 PM

Flowering cacti drought's treat -6/21/2013, 11:58 AM

Building a bridge over a key spring -6/14/2013, 9:57 AM

Country matters: Lemon painted-cup taking over -6/7/2013, 8:52 AM

Wind dampens great camping -5/31/2013, 12:22 PM

Wildlife benefits can boost CRP offers -5/24/2013, 11:42 AM

Camping season begins -5/24/2013, 11:42 AM

Field day focuses on wildlife needs -5/17/2013, 11:52 AM

FWS making big changes for LEPC rule -5/10/2013, 2:14 PM

Pheasants Forever biologists planning workshops on CRP enrollment -5/10/2013, 2:14 PM

Conservation plan nearly complete -5/3/2013, 10:31 AM

Final prairie chicken meeting upcoming -4/26/2013, 8:31 AM

Wildlife highlights Trego forestry day -4/26/2013, 8:31 AM

NRCS recognizes area volunteers -4/26/2013, 8:30 AM

Learning to cope -4/19/2013, 9:30 AM

myTown Calendar

SPOTLIGHT
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Grasshoppers: This time of year, the bane of nearly everything

Published on -7/22/2011, 12:03 PM

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There's just something wrong with walking on ground that jumps with every step.

Yet the thousands -- if not hundreds of thousands of pesky grasshoppers -- make it seem like the ground is jumping.

Oh, to be sure, my new dog, a bounding, full-of-energy golden retriever seems to like it. He, of course, is the one who decided the millers that invaded my house weeks ago -- just as he moved in -- were fair fare for the chasing, providing a good snack along the way.

Suffice it to say after Milo, I didn't sweep up a single miller.

But now it's the grasshoppers, the bane of western grasslands, that have moved in on my small slice of Ellis County.

They are everywhere.

In the grass, on the sidewalk, on the gate. They even seem to be waiting at the front door, ready to come inside, where there are at least three plants I haven't been able to kill off just yet.

They, however, have been able to kill off just about everything else outside.

The few mums that I was able to get to survive over the winter now are gone, the leaves munched away by the invading horde of insects. A neighboring plant, one that has been alive now for several years, faced a similar death.

Now I see the grasshoppers are voraciously eating other less delectable plants -- weeds. Make no mistake, I'm not heartbroken about that, but it simply amazes me what they will eat.

Perhaps I should turn that around and make it what they won't eat.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has a list of grasses, sedges and forbs they will eat. It's a very long list, and ragweed is right there in the thick of it.

Some they could eat to their hearts' content. Others, well, they should head on down the road and take a sip of something that would kill them dead.

Alas, that's not happening.

Oh sure, there's a few interesting looking grasshoppers, thanks to their brightly colored armored shells, which, of course, is why it's so difficult to kill them off.

Overall, they're simply obnoxious, a pain in the, well, wherever they land.

Of course, I've little room to talk as my only losses have been a couple flowers and weeds.

I only can imagine what a field of corn or soybeans or sunflowers might look like, or the spraying bill to keep it looking slightly less damaged.

With the drought, however, it's debatable it would be worth the cost, especially considering what the lack of rainfall is doing.

In some cases, it's so parched, dryland corn just isn't good enough to serve as insect food.

As for me, I'll smash, squash and squish any grasshopper I can get my foot on.

Milo can eat the rest. Just think of the money I'll save on dog food.

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