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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 23, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta 14 LETHBRIDGE HERALD Monday, December 23, 1974 U ofL plays Big Brother to birds, beasts I ARIZONA WOODRAT SUBJECT OF STUDY By JIM GRANT Herald Staff Writer Darting about a confined area, the "mouse-like" woodrat collects all small shiny and other unusually- shaped objects and places them on her cage She then gathers and stores items of food at a location other than her cage of residence and refuses to drink water in the food-storage area Such mysterious actions of many animal and bird species are puzzling to man It is to replace the unknown with a factual and better under- standing of living creatures that motivates curious groups of students and faculty members to spend hours watching their movements at the University of Lethbridge The woodrats, as most animals and birds, are creatures of habits that can be detected with a minimum of observance MYSTERY However, the mystery behind their actions can only be scientifically determined through observance over a lengthy period of time It is for the detailed and controlled study of a variety of animals and birds that the University of Lethbridge is constructing an animal centre at a remote location, about a quarter mile southwest of its academic building The university's major animal centre for instruc- tional and research activities is still based in the academic building The remote centie is to allow for the study of animals and birds that "don't lend themselves to being kept in- explains Prof Lloyd Delude, the member of the U of L psychology department in charge of the new facility ARTIFICIAL LIFE Animals kept m the animal centre in the academic building have become adapted to an artificial life and their behavior does not resemble their habits in the wild "They wouldn't survive if the professor suggests He describes the remote animal centre as being half- way between the animal's natural habitat and the laboratory-type facility in the academic building It is in a treed.area near the U of L nursery and access to it is limited by a high fence The facility includes an office and laboratory space in a building that has indoor, pens, for larger animals such as sheep or dogs, with access to outdoor runs It also includes outdoor pens and cages for the study of both birds and animals in the out- door environment When the facility is com- pleted early in 1975, it is to include a television camera that is able to record the movements of the animals during the night The camera will save students and staff the many hours they are now spending observing the behavior of the animals or birds, Prof Delude says VIDEO TAPING The first step in studying behavior, he says, is to "just sit there and watch them to get an idea of what they are doing By video taping the action, the observer can reduce the number of hours of watching the animals and eliminate the all-night sessions by playing the tape back at a faster speed The university students and staff have two species of woodrats under remote obser- vation, a wide tailed rat from Arizona and two narrow tailed rats from the Crowsnest Pass area The woodrats from the Crowsnest are rare in this province and very difficult to observe in their natural en- vironment because they burrow into the rocks and usually only surface twice a day Observers of the rats are attempting to discover why they have developed certain habits such as packing away shiny objects above their cage or around the entrance to their habitat Prof Delude recalls the story of the trapper who awoke one morning in a shack in the Crowsnest Pass to the shocking realization that his talse teeth had disappeared over night He found them some time later in a rat's nest STORING FOOD The professor also hopes to gain an understanding of why the woodrat insists on storing its food in one area and living in another It could be, he says, that the rat would build six nests, each with a different purpose, if the material was available Does the rat tend to leave its next more often in Chinook conditions' This is another question the psychology professor hopes to answer through observation While the many hours psy- chology, biology and sociology students and professors and their counterparts throughout the world spend studying animals may not seem valuable to some, the world would know very little about the animal and bird kingdoms if such studies were not carried on Some research results are also financially beneficial to the nation As an example Prof Delude points to the discovery in Utah that could save Southern Alberta farmers thousands of dollars by protecting their sheep from coyotes A light coating of five grams of lithium chloride on a piece of lamb is all that is needed to make the coyote sick enough to avoid sheep forever They even found, the professor adds, that the coyote would vomit upon see- ing a sheep after only two treatments of Lithium chloride on a raw piece of lamb that included the wool The treatment process could eventually be eliminated once all coyotes in an area have been treated because the female coyotes determine what the pups will eat when they grow up, he says Cost benefits? Lithium chloride is only a pound and one treatment takes five grams What appears to be the most "bizarre experiment" may have tremendous economic benefits, the psychology researcher says One researcher found in the course of his observations that a cow didn't produce as much milk if it was looking at other animals, he recalled MILK PRODUCTION "Crowding produces stress and stress causes milk production to go down. Regardless of the economic benefits the new remote animal centre produces, it should be of tremendous value in helping Southern Albertans gam a better understanding and knowledge of animals and birds that populate this area City Scene St. Basil's award established A former student of St Basil's School, now a resident of Las Vegas has established a memorial award for the students of the school Hamsko has asked the separate school board to place her donation in a trust fund and divide the annual interest beiween two students each year at St Basil's School The awards will be known as the John Supma Memorial in honor of her brother Trustee Steve Vaselenak has also established a award for student achievement in music and drama at Catholic Central High School Bonus may help keep workers The Alberta Hospital Association's cost-of- hvmg bonus may end the exodus of workers from hospital jobs, the president of the Alberta Association of Registered Nursing Orderlies said Friday In a prepared statement, Carl Pickles of Lethbridge said the bonus retroactive to Sept 1, may create stability in many hospitals Many workers are leaving hospitals because they can t support families on hospital pay, he said Clearance Specials on RADIOS and VACUUM CLEANERS SAVINGS UP TO OFF Call Appliances 327-5767 DOWNTOWN Drug theft reported Several types of tran- quihzers were reported stolen following a weekend break-in at McCaffrey s Drug Store, 418 13th St N Lethbridge city police say entry was gained by breaking the wood out of a rear door and then shouldering another door The break-in is thought to have occurred sometime between Saturday at 9 p m and Sunday at 11 30 a m Certified Dental Mechanic CLIFF BLACK, BLACK DENTAL LAB MEDICAL DENTAL BLOG. Lower Level PHONE 327-2822 season. S DISPENSARY DOWNTOWN GEORGE Haig Medical Bldg 601 6th Ave. S Call 328-6133 RODNEY 401 5th St S Free Delivery Call 327-3364 Damage high in two weekend accidents Two minor injuries and about damage resulted from two motor vehicle ac- cidents Saturday in Lethbridge In one of the accidents Lethbridge city police allege William John Choboter, 16, 1812 7th Ave N was east- bound on 3rd Avenue South in the 1100 block about 10 55 p m when he lost control of his car The car veered into the westbound lane and was in collision with a truck driven by Keith Comai, 518 llth St N The Comai truck skidded out of control onto the sidewalk and struck a light standard It then spun around and struck the side of a house owned by Stan Coxson, 1201 3rd Avenue South, doing about ?1 000 damage A passenger in the Choboter car Gwen McKenna, 227 15th St N sustained a sore right hip in the accident Total damage reported was Mr Choboter was charged with driving at a rate of speed that was unreasonable due to the nature of the roads and the weather conditions In the other accident, David John Plett, 26, 722 19th St N has been charged with im- paired driving following an accident at 16th Street and 8th Break-in Saturday City police investigated a break-in at Marshall Auto Wreckers early Saturday mor- ning Police were told entry was gamed through a rear window of the firm's garage A number of offices were ransacked but nothing appeared to have been taken It is believed the culprits were searching for money MIKE Extra wear For Every Pair 371 -7th Street South FOX DENTURE CLINIC 5st 1922 PHONE 327-6565 E. S. P FOX, C.D M FOX LETHBRIDGE DENTAL LAB 204 MEDICAL DENTAL BLDG Avenue North Police allege Mr Plett was eastbound on 8th Avenue when at 16th Street North he was in collision with a northbound car driven by Donna Burrows, 28, 1622 8th Ave N who sustained minor injuries in the accident Following the collision the Plett vehicle continued east out of control and struck a parked truck belonging to Henry J Godslave, 57, 1607 8th Ave N Total damage reported was Auto theft reported A light green 1967 Rambler was reported stolen on the weekend Herburt Axford, 2405 23rd Ave S told police he parked his car in the 500 block of 5th Avenue South Saturday about 5 p m and when he return- ed later it was gone The theft was reported Sun- dav morning Incidents of drunkenness reported down in November Incidents involving public drunkenness fell dramatically in Lethbridge last month, the Lethbridge city police's November report says Thirty men were charged with being intoxicated in November compared with 69 in October Fourteen women were picked up for being in- toxicated but not charged compared with 30 for October, the monthly report says In total there were 217 offences reported under the provincial Liquor Control Act, 175 less than in October This could indicate a Lethbridge provincial court policy instituted in June to curb repeated public drunkeness is working Under the policy, people convicted of being drunk twice in 30 days are given a four-month jail sentence at the Lethbridge Correctional Institution where they take a special course aimed at changing their drinking patterns Yearly statistics to the end of November show there have been 826 people charged with intoxication. 15 more than for a similar period last year However, the number of people arrested but not charg- ed for intoxication is to the end of November, 464 less, than for a similar period in 1973 A similar liquor offence policy has been m effect in Edmonton for the past few years According to authorities there it has reduc- ed the number of people appearing in court on intox- ication charges However, the number of women charged with intoxica- tion rose from three to nine and the number of men picked up but not charged with intox- ication increased from 96 to 106 Shoplifting offences icported in November jumped to 38 from 12 in October Insp Glen Michelson of the city police estimated juveniles were involved in 20 of the November offences Although the number of assaults remained almost the same for October and November, the kinds of assaults differed There were 20 reports of common assault in November compared with 11 in October, one report of assault causing bodily harm compared with four in Oc- tober and no incidents of assaulting police officers in November, compared with four in October ART DIETRICH DENTURE CLINIC DENTAL MECHANIC ScbwirtzBMg.2225lkSt S. Phone 328-4095 The crush is over The Christmas crush at the Lethbridge Post Office was handled with no trouble this year, assistant postmaster Henry Schaufele said today "Things went very smoothly this he said No extra carriers were hired, but 102 temporary inside workers were taken on They handled a fair bit of Christmas mail, though. Last week, letters and Christmas cards passed through the post office Up to Thursday, parcels were delivered. Figures for Friday and later haven't been compiled yet, Mr Schaufele said Robert Taylor shows what's left Stage show being prepared PENNER'S PLUMBING 1209 2nd Avt.S. Phono 327-4121 FIRST BAPTIST SAINT ANDREW'S PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH Christmas Eve Family Service p.m. in First Baptist Church 1614 5th Avenue South CHRISTMAS DAY FAMILY SERVICE a.m. in Saint Andrew's Presbyterian Church 1818 5 Avenue South EVERYONE WELCOME' Singers are still needed for a Lethbridge based stage production being prepared for a cross country tour in 1975, the show s musical director said Friday Carroll Lande said "Hi- I.itois 21 has lined up seven icn.tlc Mngeis so far and some It advertised lor 20 singci s out really wants 11 Some applicants won't have the necessary voice quality, she predicted The show is not seeking professionals, but women with good quality voices If they have the voice quality, it's worthwhile training them, said Miss Lande The six month tour will begin June 1 in Newfoundland It will work west to British Columbia visiting 12 major cities, and back east visiting 12 secondary centres, she said May seasonal joys warm your heart. To all thanks. FERGUSON PAINT LTD. 318-7th St. S., Lethbridge ;