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As we all know, the current economic crisis is causing stress and uncertainty among families.

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Many have lost their jobs. Many their homes. Parents, struggling to make ends meet and striving to function under their own mounting stress, may not perceive the profound effects this downward turn is having on their children. Stress in children can manifest in many ways, depending on age and personality. School-aged children may become withdrawn and express feelings of distrust or being unloved. They may complain of headaches or stomachaches and can have trouble sleeping or loss of appetite.

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Stress is also dangerous for teenagers and we know theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re challenging during the best of times. So times like these can be especially difficult on them.

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Teens under stress may show anger and disillusionment and hold onto these feelings longer than usual. They may exhibit a lack of self-esteem and a general distrust of the world.

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When stress is very high, a teenager may become rebellious and begin to take part in high-risk behaviors. Teens who are highly stressed are at a considerably greater risk of smoking, drinking, getting drunk and using illegal drugs. Half of all substance abuse disorders as well as mental illnesses like major depression and anxiety start by age 14. At Lee Carlson Centerâ&#x201E;˘ for Mental Health & Well-Being youth and families have long been our focus. By diagnosing and treating the causes of stress early, we can help families and children get the help they need to become healthier and happier. Lee Carlson Centerâ&#x201E;˘ is a charitable organization. We offer sliding fee scales or no charge for many of the programs and services we provide to uninsured and underinsured clients.

FOR ALL

Generous support from local business and individuals help offset these costs.

Know of someone or a family that needs our help? Let us know.

RESOLUTIONISTS

Can you help with a tax deductible donation? On behalf of the board and staff at Lee Carlson Center, your support is greatly appreciated! Warm regards and Happy New Year! Kathy Samilo Executive Director

Patty Halvorson Marketing/Development Manager

2222 Woodale Dr, Suite 200 Mounds View â&#x20AC;˘ 763.780.2181 Conveniently located across Cty. Rd 10 from the Mermaid Event Center.

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763-784-4747 12420 Aberdeen St BLAINE

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donation and receive an extra $10 bonus. * Bonus redeemable only upon completion of a full donation. Coupon cannot be combined with any other BioLife offer. Expires 3.31.11 TB

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P.S. Make your donation in honor of family & friends and weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll let them know of your kind gift. Yes, I want to help families in need. Enclosed is my tax-deductible gift: __ $25 __ $50 __ $100 __ $250 __ $500 __ $1,000 Other $_____

$ 25

will pay for 10 mood rings to help anxious children monitor their stress levels and learn positive coping skills

$ 50

will pay for a therapeutic board game used in play therapy to help kids whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve experienced extreme stress or trauma

Donation in memory of: ___________________________________

$100

will pay for a 6 week parenting class and a parenting book for 2 distressed parents

Please send the honoreeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s card to me at my billing address (below):

$250

will pay for workbooks for 12 students in groups whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been victims of teasing and bullying who are learning skills to handle their frustration

$500

RII

will pay a high deductible for a client who would not otherwise obtain therapy due to high out of pocket costs

$1,000 will pay for short term counseling for a child/adolescent at risk for truancy, depression, school failure, suicide, criminal behaviors due to chaotic home situations

Donation in honor of: ____________________________________

(Street Address)

(City/State)

(Zip)

Please tear off this form and return to Lee Carlson Center 7954 University Ave NE Fridley, MN. 55432. Make checks payable to: Lee Carlson Center. Or donate online at www.leecarlsoncenter.org. Your contribution is tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. Or give us a call 763-780-3036

Falcon Prince Inc . â&#x2014;? 1633 County Hwy. 10 â&#x2014;? Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 â&#x2014;? Phone: 763-792-1125 Fax: 763-792-4795 â&#x2014;? Email: dean@realbits.com â&#x2014;? www.TidbitsTwinCities.com â&#x2014;? Published under licensing agreement with Tidbits Media, Inc., Montgomery, AL www.tidbitsmedia.com


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GIVING FOR A CHANGE

Blood Drive January 22, 2011 from 9am to 5pm National Sports Center (Schwan's Center)

1700—105th Ave. NE Blaine, MN 55449

Tickets $35 ($45 at the door)

50 FREE OIL CHANGES

that come and donate blood that day. The firstto50people presenting donors will receive a coupon for a come 1staserved basis. first served basis. free oil change.1st This is on first come The Memorial Blood Centers Mobil Unit will be here. serving treats and refreshments to all donators.

Non refundable

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(Designate “Taste of Blaine”)

Taste Samples from 35 Restaurants! A fundraiser for Free to Be, Inc. “Providing Car Care to Enable Independence”

Page 2

To Sign Up For a Donation Time

please go to WWW.MBC.ORG and search by SPONSOR CODE 3775.- or call Brian at 651-332-7162

13533 Jay St. Andover

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BODIES OF WATER (continued) F. (5.5 degrees C). So far, no scientific • Those who remember Canadian folksinger Gordon Lightfoot’s 1976 ballad “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” might not know that it is the tale of a shipwreck on Lake Superior. On November 10, 1975, the Great Lakes freighter was en route from Silver Bay, Minnesota, to a steel mill on Zug Island, Michigan, following her regular route. Seventeen miles northwest of Whitefish Point, Michigan, she encountered a winter storm with winds exceeding 58 miles per hour (93 km/hour) and waves of about 35 feet (11 m) high. Although the Coast Guard’s rescue efforts recovered lifeboats and rafts, none of the 29 crew members survived the wreck. Nearly seven months later, the freighter was photographed under water for the first time, 530 feet (160 m) below the surface of the lake. The ship’s bell was recovered in 1995 and now resides in a museum near Whitefish Point. It’s estimated that more than 25,000 lives have been lost on the Great Lakes in its 300 years of shipping history. The Whitefish Point area alone has claimed at least 240 ships. • Lake Ontario was not named after the Canadian province; rather it was the other way around. The lake was named first by the Iroquois, and the name means “beautiful lake” or “sparkling water.” Lake Michigan is the only Great Lake located entirely within the United States. It’s about 118 miles (190 km) wide and 307 miles (494 km) long. Lake Erie is the shallowest and the warmest of all the lakes. It’s home to some of the world’s best walleye pike. Lake Huron, the second largest Great Lake, contains about 30,000 islands and has the longest shoreline of any of the five. • Scotland’s Loch Ness is over 20 miles (32 km) long and hundreds of feet deep in many places. Slime, peat and mud contribute to the murkiness of this body of water, making it difficult to spot the legendary Loch Ness monster. Although the first photograph of the creature was published in 1933, this was far from the earliest report of a sighting. Back in the seventh century, an Irish monk named Saint Columba wrote of a “water beast” that had mauled and dragged under a man in the area. Those who have reported sightings frequently describe “Nessie” as resembling the plesiosaur, a long-necked aquatic reptile that scientists claim has been extinct for about 65 million years. However, the plesiosaurs lived in warm tropical waters, and Loch Ness averages about 42 degrees

expedition has been successful in locating any such sea serpent, even with the use of 600 sonar beams and sophisticated satellites. • “Ye’ll take the high road, and I’ll take the low road” are lyrics from a wellknown Scottish tune published around 1841. The singer and his true love will never meet again on the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, the largest lake in Great Britain, which contains more than 30 islands. The “low road” refers to the Celtic belief that a person dying away from his homeland would be provided a route home by fairies. • The state of Minnesota may be known as “The Land of 10,000 Lakes,” but that figure isn’t the real number. According to the state’s Department of Natural Resources, the actual count is 11,842 lakes measuring at or larger than ten acres each. There are only four counties that don’t have at least one natural lake. The state’s shoreline from lakes and rivers is more than that of California, Florida and Hawaii combined. • Switzerland’s Lake Geneva was the inspiration for the British rock band Deep Purple’s megahit “Smoke on the Water” in 1972. The band was set to record “Machine Head” in a Montreux, Switzerland, casino in December of 1971 on the morning after a Frank Zappa concert there. During Zappa’s performance, a spectator fired a flare gun at the ceiling and started a fire that completely destroyed the casino. Deep Purple members watched the smoke spreading over the Lake from their hotel window. The song, No. 426 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the “500 Greatest Songs of All Time,” has opening lyrics of “We all came out to Montreux, on the Lake Geneva shoreline.” The line “Swiss time was running out” referred to the fact that their visas were due to expire shortly. A portion of Lake Geneva lies in France, where it is called Lake Léman. • Why is the Great Salt Lake in Utah salty? It’s because it is an endorheic lake, meaning it doesn’t have an outlet. Tributary rivers continually transport small amounts of salt mixed in their fresh water into the Lake. When large quantities of that water evaporate, the salt remains, leaving the Lake far saltier than even seawater. At approximately 75 miles (120 km) long and 35 miles (56 km) wide, it’s the 37th largest lake on Earth. Mountain man Jim Bridger and French-Canadian fur trader Etienne Provost were the first Europeans to see the Lake, in separate sightings in 1824.

An Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema) Research Study for Children

- Volunteers, ages 3 months to 17 years of age, are needed for a research study of an investigational topical medication being conducted at the Minnesota Clinical Study Center located in Fridley, MN. - If your child is 3 months to 17 years of age and has been diagnosed with Atopic Dermatitis (eczema) we have a 4-week, 4 or 5 visit study. Qualified participant will be seen by a board certifiedDermatologist. No cost study related evaluations.

Qualified participants will be compensated for their time and travel WHERE:

The Minnesota Clinical Study Center 7205 University Avenue N.E. Fridley Minnesota

Cl inical Study Center

Steven Kempers, M.D. For more information, please call

763-502-2941

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This week, Tidbits expresses admiration for a true sports hero, Phillipe Croizon, who recently made a historic swim across the English Channel. Follow along and see what made this crossing especially amazing. • Phillipe Croizon’s day started out as any other back in 1994. The 26-year-old Frenchman had a good job as a steelworker at a nearby foundry, was married with a son and had another baby on the way. This was the day he chose to work on the outside television antenna at his home in Saint-Rémy-sur-Creuse, France. As Croizon stood on a metal ladder on the roof, the antenna touched a high-voltage power line, sending 20,000 volts of electricity through the young man’s body. As the electricity grounded, he became adhered to the ladder, and he remained in that state for 20 minutes before his neighbor contacted help. His injuries were so severe, they necessitated the amputation of both arms and both legs. • As Croizon lay recuperating in his hospital bed in Tours, France, he happened to watch a television documentary about swimming the English Channel, and was so inspired, he made the decision that this would be something he would accomplish during his lifetime. • The English Channel is, at its narrowest, a 22-mile (34-km) body of water separating England and France, and crossing it is no small feat for any swimmer, let alone a quadruple amputee. Swimming the Channel first became a popular achievement in 1875, when Captain Matthew Webb completed the first documented unassisted swim across the Strait of Dover in 21 hours and 45 minutes. • In 1926, Gertrude Ederle became the first woman to swim across the channel, with a time of 14 hours and 39 minutes, defeating the time of two of the five men who had successfully completed the distance in previous years. The current world record was set in 2007 by Bulgarian Petar Stoychev, the first to break the seven-hour mark, with a time of 6 hours, 57 minutes, 50 seconds. • At 8 a.m. on September 19, 2010, 42-year-old Croizon pushed off from the English coastline near

763-792-1125 763-792-1125 -- WWW. WWW.tidbitstwincities.COM TidbitsTwincities.COM

Folkestone. He had been training about 35 hours per week for the previous two years off France’s Atlantic coast. He was equipped with specially designed prostheses fitted with flippers that fixed onto the stumps of his legs that he used to propel himself, and a snorkel for breathing. According to his calculations, he was prepared for his crossing to take up to 24 hours. • As Croizon paddled along, he was joined by three dolphins that swam with him for a time, something he interpreted as a good luck charm. At approximately 9:30 that evening, he touched the bank at Wissant, France, just 13 and a half hours after leaving England. A quadruple amputee had beaten Gertrude Ederle’s time! A portion of his victory speech stated, “I’ve done this for myself, for my family, and for all those who have suffered tragedy and lost their taste for life.” • Croizon has documented his experiences in a recent autobiography “J’ai Decide de Vivre (I Decided to Live).” His record-making swim wasn’t the first time he’s been in the news. In 2007, this remarkable man achieved recognition for parachuting from an airplane.

Page 3


HELPFUL HOME TIP BITS

(ARA) - Homeowners are accustomed to using salt to clear ice from sidewalks and driveways in the winter. But you might be surprised to learn that there are different types of salt, and that each type has different melting properties. Rock salt is the old standby. It is the most economical choice and easily melts ice in temperatures down to 5 degrees Fahrenheit. Calcium chloride is another common ice-melting salt. It works well in colder temperatures, but it requires special handling to prevent harm to skin and delicate interior surfaces when it is tracked inside on shoes. Magnesium chloride may be the best salt to use in very cold temperatures. It is effective in temperatures down to minus 15 degrees, yet it is gentle to skin, vegetation and concrete. It also produces minimal residue, so it is less likely to be tracked indoors, and if it is, it is easily cleaned up with water. “All ice melters work in basically

the same way, by using something known as ‘freezing point depression,’ basically meaning that the point at which water freezes has been lowered,” says Jerry Poe, technical director for North American Salt Company, which markets a number of magnesium chloride products in its line of Safe Step residential ice melters. Poe says magnesium chloride works better in colder temperatures than traditional rock salt, making it the right choice in extreme weather. In fact, many highway departments rely on magnesium chloride to keep roads and highways safe and traffic moving. Because magnesium chloride is a liquid in its natural form, it dissolves quickly to make a brine. The brine spreads through the melting ice, breaking the ice’s bond with the driveway or sidewalk. It also works for longer periods of time compared to many other ice melters. Pet owners may find magnesium chloride especially helpful when clearing ice and snow because it doesn’t burn paws that have become cracked in cold temperatures. Magnesium chloride flakes also dissolve so quickly that they don’t solidify, so the ice melter is less likely to clump in fur between your pet’s pads. North American Salt Company offers a pet-friendly magnesium chloride blend ice melter called Safe Step Sure Paws. The Safe Step line also includes additional magnesium chloride blends and a 100 percent magnesium chloride product.

By Samantha Mazzotta Q: I was in the stainless-steel business for many years and thought I would comment on your recent column regarding cleaning a stained sink. Stainless steel is indeed an alloy of iron, chromium and nickel. (Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, not copper and bronze. Bronze is itself an alloy of copper and tin.) The oxidation layer of chromium is what protects the metal from staining. However, when it is scratched or worn away by abrasion, a new layer is instantaneously formed because chromium reacts immediately with the oxygen in the atmosphere. The layer is always present. It is clear, extremely hard and more or less impervious. Otherwise, the iron would oxidize, forming rust. Any popular kitchen cleanser will remove stains. However, to return to the factory polish finish is generally impossible because the sheets used to form sinks are polished at the mill with high-speed heavy machinery. It would be nearly impossible to duplicate this finish by hand. -- Joe F., via e-mail

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Sign up for our FREE Lunch & Learn 3rd Friday of the Month noon -1pm

Contact Patty at 763-230-7836 or phalvorson@leecarlsoncenter.org

7954 University Ave Fridley A charitable organization serving the mental health needs of 4,000 kids & adults every year. Photo courtesy of twinshotphotography.com

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HOME TIP: Never use a steel-wool pad to clean a stainless-steel sink. Steel-wool pads have a tendency to break apart, and tiny particles of steel can become embedded in sink’s surface. The steel particles will rust, making it appear that the sink itself is rusting.

Please Don’t Litter

A: Great information, Joe, and thanks for the clarification! Stainless-steel sinks are quite durable, and most stains or spots are made by other objects -- for example, (c) 2011 King Features Synd., Inc.

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leaving a piece of damp steel wool in the sink overnight will inevitably reveal a rust spot the next day. However, a wipe and a rinse generally removes the spot. As Joe noted, stainless-steel sinks do lose their gleaming shine over time, particularly if you use abrasives. You can keep the finish looking uniform by rinsing and wiping down the sink each night with a nonabrasive cloth or sponge, then drying with a towel so that water spots don’t form. If you want to add a bit more shine to the sink, try using a commercial stainless-steel-sink polish occasionally, following the directions on the package carefully.

“Dream a little dream of me” goes the old song. This week, Tidbits delves into the world of dreams — what we know and what we don’t know! • You’ll spend about six years dreaming over the course of your life (about two hours a night). Although some dreams seem to go on and on all night, they typically last only five to 20 minutes. • What is the purpose of dreams? A physician might say that they are a response to the body’s neural processes that take place during sleep. A psychologist might see them as a reflection of what goes on in the subconscious. (Freud felt that bad dreams were the brain’s way of controlling the emotions from life’s disturbing experiences.) A spiritual person might see dreams as a message from the gods or from a deceased loved one. Some oneirologists (scientists who study dreams) think that dreams are a way of securing experiences in our long-term memory. • Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep is that stage of sleep when the large muscles of the body become immobile, heart and breathing rates become faster, and brain activity increases. Characterized by the rapid movement of the eyes, it is at this stage when people dream. REM sleep is usually about 25 percent of an adult’s total sleep, about two hours a night, but it is divided into four or five periods. It usually begins about 90 minutes after falling asleep. Although people do dream during non-REM sleep, the most bizarre and vividly recalled dreams are during REM. • Those people who snore only do so during nonREM sleep. About 10 percent of them have sleep apnea, which causes them to stop

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breathing as many as 300 times per night. • Experiments in REM sleep began about 1952, when scientists noticed that sleepers’ eyes fluttered beneath closed eyelids. They instituted the use of a polygraph machine to record brainwaves. Modern machines monitor eye movements, as the eyes seem to move around to watch images as if on a big screen in the mind. • The next time you accuse someone of “playing possum,” you should know that it is actually impossible to tell if someone is awake. Some folks can even take naps with their eyes open and not even know it! • You won’t recall about 95 percent of your dreams. It’s the theory of some experts that déjà vu, that feeling of having “been there before,” is due to having dreamt about a similar situation, then somehow being reminded of it when awake. • Be sure to get enough sleep! If you fall asleep less than five minutes after you close your eyes, you are sleepdeprived. (Between 10 and 15 minutes is optimal.) If you are awake for 17 continuous hours, you are already experiencing a decrease in performance equal to a blood alcohol level of 0.05 percent. Sleep deprivation contributed to the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill and the Chernobyl nuclear accident. Experts estimate that it is a factor in one out of every six fatal traffic accidents. A sleepdeprived person may be more prone to depression, heart disease and hypertension. Subjects in studies often slur their speech or speak slower than usual and often have difficulty making decisions and focusing on tasks. It seems that women need about an hour more sleep per night than men, which may be part of the reason that women are more susceptible to depression.


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■ On Jan. 13, 1128, Pope Honorius II grants a papal sanction to the military order known as the Knights Templar, declaring it to be an army of God. The Knights Templar mission was to protect Christian pilgrims on their way to the Holy Land during the Crusades, the series of military expeditions aimed at defeating Muslims in Palestine. ■ On Jan. 11, 1908, President Theodore Roosevelt designates the mighty Grand Canyon a national monument. Congress increased the protection of the canyon in 1932 by making it a national park, ensuring that private development would never despoil the Grand Canyon. ■ On Jan. 12, 1926, the two-man comedy series “Sam ‘n’ Henry” debuts on Chicago’s WGN radio station. Two years later, after changing its name to “Amos ‘n’ Andy,” the show became one of the most popular radio programs in American history. ■ On Jan. 16, 1938, “King of Swing” jazz great Benny Goodman brings his revolutionary music to Carnegie Hall for the first time. The concert sold out weeks in advance, with the best seats fetching $2.75. All recordings of the show were presumed lost until Goodman’s sister-in-law came across a set of acetates in 1950. ■ On Jan. 10, 1967, President Lyndon Johnson, in his annual State of the Union message to Congress, asks for enactment of a 6 percent surcharge on personal and corporate income taxes to help support the Vietnam War for two years, or “for as long as the unusual expenditures associated with our efforts continue.” ■ On Jan. 15, 1972, “American Pie,” Don McLean’s epic poem in musical form that has long been etched in the American popular consciousness, hits No. 1 on the Billboard charts. When asked to explain what exactly he was trying to say with some of his more ambiguous lyrics, McLean has generally declined. ■ On Jan. 18, 1882, A.A. Milne, creator of “Winnie-the-Pooh,” is born. Milne wrote his volumes of verse for his son, Christopher Robin: “When We Were Very Young” (1924), “Winnie-the-Pooh” (1926), “Now We Are Six” (1927) and “The House at Pooh Corner” (1928). ■ On Jan. 19, 1915, during World War I, Britain suffers its first casualties from an air attack when two German zeppelins drop bombs on Great Yarmouth and King’s Lynn on the eastern coast of England. The zeppelin, a motor-driven rigid airship, was developed by German inventor Ferdinand Graf von Zeppelin in 1900. ■ On Jan. 17, 1953, a prototype Chevrolet Corvette sports car makes its debut at General Motors’ Motorama auto show in New York City. The car featured an all-fiberglass body, a white exterior and red interior, a 150-horsepower engine and a starting price tag of around $3,500. An AM radio and heater were extra. ■ On Jan. 21, 1977, President Jimmy Carter grants an unconditional pardon to hundreds of thousands of men who evaded the draft during the Vietnam War. In total, some 100,000 young Americans went abroad in the late 1960s and early ‘70s to avoid serving in the war. ■ On Jan. 22, 1981, Rolling Stone magazine’s John Lennon tribute issue hits newsstands, featuring a cover photograph of a naked John Lennon curled up in a fetal embrace of a fully clothed Yoko Ono. The photograph had been taken just 12 hours before Lennon’s death. (c) 2011 King Features Synd., Inc.

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TIDBITSÂŽ EXPLORES HIBERNATION by Patricia L. Cook Some of us spend a lot of time yawning and nodding our way through movies, airplane and auto rides, sermons, speeches and more. Imagine sleeping through an entire winter! Letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s explore the extreme sleep called hibernation. â&#x20AC;˘ Hibernation is a very deep, special sleep that animals use for protection during the cold winter months. All hibernators eat a lot of food for their bodies to store as fat, seek safe shelter for the winter months and become inactive or dormant. Some store nuts or other seeds to eat during the winter. â&#x20AC;˘ There are actually two groups of hibernators: deep sleepers and â&#x20AC;&#x153;trueâ&#x20AC;? hibernators. True hibernation involves

greatly lowering breathing, body temperature and heart rate. â&#x20AC;˘ Most people think of bears when the word hibernation is used. In fact, bears are not true hibernators but deep sleepers. They are inactive during extreme winter weather but may wake up during mild weather. They are easily disturbed by noise and can rise to protect themselves rather quickly. Many bears actually give birth during hibernation so they have to be aware and somewhat awake to tend to their cubs. Some scientists call the winter sleep of bears â&#x20AC;&#x153;denningâ&#x20AC;? instead of hibernation or deep sleeping. turn the page for more! â&#x20AC;˘ A list of hibernating mammals includes: chipmunks, ground squirrels, prairie dogs, possums, hedgehogs, hamsters, skunks, bats, marmots, badgers and some lemurs. Some non-mammals that hibernate are: turtles, lizards, snakes, frogs, toads, newts and some insects. There is even one bird that is considered a hibernator. The Common Poorwill can drop its body temperature and go into a

hibernation-like state known as â&#x20AC;&#x153;torporâ&#x20AC;? for several weeks. â&#x20AC;˘ The Arctic ground squirrel, a true hibernator, is North Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest and most northern ground squirrel. This small mammal digs a hibernation chamber off its main burrow which is only about 20 inches (.5 m) deep. It rolls up into a ball and covers itself with its tail in the chamber lined with leaves, grass, lichen and animal hair. It is the only mammal known to survive a drop in body temperature during hibernation of 28 to 27Âş F (-2 to -3Âş C). People canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t survive a body temperature lower than 90Âş F (32Âş C). This squirrel wakes up briefly every few weeks during its long hibernation, which may last seven months. â&#x20AC;˘ The type and length of hibernation depends on the animalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s body and its habitat or home. Since the Arctic ground squirrel is small and lives in cold areas, its hibernation is long. Similarly, mouse lemurs hibernate up to seven months. Garter snakes in the Arctic tundra may hibernate eight months. The longest

hibernators known are Turkish hamsters in the Middle East, which can hibernate as long as ten months! â&#x20AC;˘ Those long-hibernating garter snakes may get together with thousands of friends for group hibernating. Groups of up to 12 skunks sleep together, and brown bats hang in clusters in their caves in groups of over 100. â&#x20AC;˘ To prepare for hibernation and the approach of winter, animals eat a lot. They need lots of body fat for the long sleep. Baby toads and bats actually eat enough to double their weight. Not all bats hibernate. By the way, did you know that bats are the only flying mammals? (Flying squirrels and flying lemurs move through the air but they are only gliding.) â&#x20AC;˘ Black bears may gain as much as 30 pounds (13.5 kg) per week when they are preparing to hibernate or â&#x20AC;&#x153;den.â&#x20AC;? So, just like when you eat too much at a holiday meal, the extra fat makes animals less energetic and ready for their long winterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nap. Continued Pg. 10

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HIBERNATION (Continued From Pg. 9) • Non-breeding polar bear females and males don’t hibernate or den. Pregnant polar bears hibernate in dens built in snow banks while preparing for their cubs to arrive. The cubs weigh about a pound (.45 kg) when born and 20-30 pounds (9-14 kg) when they come out of the dens in March or April. Polar bears are found in Arctic areas of Canada, Alaska, Russia, Greenland and Norway.

Page 10

• Are you wondering about these sleepers’ bathroom issues? When they burn fat, it produces water. This water stays in the bodies of true hibernators for hydration, eliminating the need to urinate. Animals that get up to eat occasionally, such as squirrels, do urinate. • Instead of storing large amounts of body fat, eastern chipmunks and Columbian ground squirrels (and other small mammals) store large amounts of nuts and other seeds in their burrows. Scientists have found up to two gallons (8 l) of seeds and nuts in the burrows of chipmunks. That’s a lot of food for such tiny animals. • On humans, body fat is not necessarily desirable, although we need some for reserve energy. For animals, it is extremely important. There are two

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eats seeds, leaves, grass, flowers, fruit, eggs, insects and, yes, some wood. • Punxsutawney Phil is probably the most famous hibernator in the world. This little guy (groundhog) has been a “weather predictor” for over 120 years. February 2nd is Groundhog Day (the day Phil awakens), and Phil seeing (or not seeing) his shadow on that day “determines” the time Ole’ Man Winter will linger. The town of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, has tied itself closely to the groundhog. Phil has his own website, fan club and appears on lots of news and weather programs every February. • While the snow and cold of winter are all around us, isn’t it interesting to think of all the animals that are sleeping it away?


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Continued i d Pg. 3

Water, water everywhere! About 71 percent of the earthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s surface is covered by water. This week, Tidbits dips its toe in just a few of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bodies of water. â&#x20AC;˘ Situated on the border between the United States and Canada and covering a total surface of 80,545 square miles (208,610 square km), the group of five Great Lakes holds more than 20 percent of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s surface fresh water. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s enough water to cover the U.S. 48-state mainland to a depth of 9.5 feet (2.9 m). If you canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t remember their names, you can use the acronym HOMES, which puts the lakes in no particular order â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie and Superior. If you want to name them from west to east, use the phrase: She Made Harry Eat Onions. â&#x20AC;˘ The largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area is Lake Superior, stretching 350 miles (563 km) long by 160 miles (257 km) wide. In some places, it reaches a depth of 1,333 feet (406 m). The Ojibwe tribe has lived around Lake Superior for over 500 years and calls it â&#x20AC;&#x153;Gitche Gumee,â&#x20AC;? translating to â&#x20AC;&#x153;big water.â&#x20AC;? Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote of the lake in his 1855 poem â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Song of Hiawatha.â&#x20AC;?

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TIDBITSÂŽ TAKES A DIP IN SOME BODIES OF WATER

OVER Issue 633 Published by: Falcon Prince Publishing

of the North Metro


ISSUE 633 A1