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Come to a public forum with the Dog Committee

To the Editor:

The Carlisle Dog Subcommittee invites you to participate in a public forum on Wednesday, March 14, at 7 p.m. at Town Hall to gather your feedback on proposed bylaws governing dog ownership and dog related matters in Carlisle. The Dog Subcommittee addressed the issues mentioned at the public forum in December of 2017 and the new bylaws can be found at: www.carlislema.gov/Pages/CarlisleMA_BOS/Carlisle-Animal%20Control%20Bylaw%20-Revised%20draft%20for%20public%20inp.pdf

The Dog Subcommittee was constituted by the Board of Selectman, and has been meeting since last summer to revise Carlisle’s outdated bylaws concerning our furry friends.  Among other things, the committee’s recommendations would create new standards for dog control, would implement licensing requirements for commercial dog walkers operating within the town and would propose meaningful enforcement penalties and the means of enforcing them when violations occur. 

The Dog Subcommittee intends to bring revised bylaws to Town Meeting this Spring for passage on the Town Warrant. The Subcommittee encourages discussion now so that any changes can be made prior to submission to the Town Warrant and have quick acceptance at Annual Town Meeting. This will be the last public forum so now is the time for interested parties to participate in the dialogue and comment on the new bylaws. We look forward to seeing you on March 14 and hearing your comments. 

Susan Provenzano

Mill Pond Lane

Dog Subcommittee co-chair

Join the Poppy Project

To the Editor:

Sunday, November 11, 2018 will be the centenary of the end of World War One, and the establishment of Armistice Day, (now Veterans Day in the USA), around the globe.

Carlisle will be recognizing the significance of this event with the installation of a field of hand-crafted poppies flowing down from a scarf around Lady Liberty in the rotary, and across to the new Roll of Honor in the Common. Similar installations will also be happening in Australia, the UK and Canada.

In order to create the thousands of poppies we need contributions from anyone who would like to help. If you do want to learn a new skill, knitting, crocheting, sewing or felting, there will be events focusing on teaching you throughout the spring and summer. There are also lots of other ways to get involved including helping with the installation in November, and we also have opportunities for middle and high school student community service hours. Free “Create a Poppy “craft kits for one poppy are available at the Gleason Public Library.

Further information on how to get involved, including patterns on how to create poppies is on our website.  https://carlislepoppyproject.weebly.com  and follow the latest happenings on our Facebook page “Carlisle MA Poppy Project”.

Please come to our first open house “Pop Up Poppy Party” creating crochet and knitted poppies this Sunday March 11 March at 4 p.m. at 128 Heald Rd. Please note, this event is for those who are 12 years and older, (there will be events for smaller children later). Email an RSPV to carlislepoppyproject@gmail.com if you will attend this party, and bring along knitting needles, crochet hooks and yarn as listed on the website.

Debbie Bentley

Heald Road

Re: An open letter to CCHS superintendent

To the Editor:

First off, I am fairly new to Carlisle, being here just shy of five years, but in that time, we have fallen in love with the town, and we are grateful for the wonderful neighbors who surround us. When I read the letter that Darragh wrote this past week I was taken aback for several reasons. My first feeling was sadness that she and probably many others in the community, have great fears for their most precious belongings, their children and their safety. As I read on though, I felt that the politics and raw emotions of the most recent terrible event in her words, and as her conversation turned more political I felt the need to voice my opinion on the matter. 

Again, I understand the fear a tragedy like this can present, but I also believe we need to drill down to the root and solve the problem opposed to doing something that wastes energy and resources better served. I had spent nine years in both the Army and Marine special operations, I am a private investigator and have provided personal security to clients, I am trained to handle weapons and I know the laws as well. The tragedy in Florida could have been prevented by the laws we already have in place. The County Sheriff and the school superintendent created a program which reduced charging youths for violations, which if it were reported could have prevented the guy from buying a gun. That, along with the failure of the FBI to act on tips about the killer, should have stopped this. The laws were not followed, laws cannot fix this issue, not unless authorities utilize them. 

I know this horrific event is fresh in our minds, but the reality of it is that our children have a better chance of dying from opiate abuse, or from a car crash, sending a snapchat on their phone while driving. Is it the weapons that caused the event or something ingrained into our society that has changed us? We have always had guns; mass shootings didn’t begin until 1984 at a McDonalds. It has increased in frequency ever since, what changed? Both parents needing to work, causing less interaction with our children? Who knows, but when we can find the cause, and not until, we will not solve this. If we take ARs away, they will use handguns and so on. We need to stop this, and I am not opposed to stricter gun laws, but it is only part of the solution. Maybe we can start a broader conversation and include our children and we need to listen to them to understand why they are committing these acts, because if you drill this down it is our children who are the shooters as well. Let’s solve the problem.

George Michalik

Canterbury Court

Maybe hunting isn’t the answer

To the Editor:

I greatly admire the research and writings of Richard Ostfeld. He is the author of Lyme Disease, the Ecology of a Complex System, a book that really defined complexities in nature for me. In his book, Ostfeld wrote about survival rates of larval ticks who fed on various small animal hosts. It turns out that 50% survived to repletion on a mouse. Only 3. 5% on an opossum survived (due to grooming). During summer peak activity for larvae, 5300 larval ticks are killed per week on each opossum. 

In 2004, Ostfeld proposed that rodent populations would perform well where there was predator loss, and the Cary Institute reported that some studies supported this but that further research was needed. In 2017, Tim Hofmeester published “Cascading Effects of Predator Activity on Tick-borne Disease Risk” in the Proceedings of the Royal Society. The authors studied the abundance of mice and the number of newly hatched ticks and the number of infected nymphs living on them. Two different land areas were studied, one area where foxes were heavily hunted, and the other where they were protected. The mice in the protected areas had 10 to 20% of the newly hatched ticks and 15% of the infected nymphs as those found in the hunted areas. Surprisingly, there was no difference in the mouse population itself.

The authors conclude the paper with “The emergence of cascading effects of predator activity on tick-borne disease risk calls for the appreciation and protection of predator species such as red fox…”

So where does Massachusetts stand with respect to protecting red fox and opossums? A visit to Mass.gov shows that red foxes and opossums can be hunted from November 1 to February 28 in all wildlife management zones with no bag limits. Reporting of red fox kills can be delayed until four working days after the season ends. Opossum kill requires no reporting at all.

Perhaps the new paradigm for Lyme disease should be less kill. The old way of killing our way to Lyme disease elimination doesn’t work.

Jeannie Geneczko

Maple Street