Happy Birthday Mountains to Sea Trail!

The Mountain to Sea Trail is celebrating it’s 42nd birthday! The MST runs 1175 miles from the Great Smokies to the Outer Banks, through beauty and diversity of NC’s lands and culture. To celebrate, Friends of the MST is holding birthday hikes September 6-8, so get out there and show your love with a proper outdoor celebration! Find a hike and sign up here: https://mountainstoseatrail.org/birthdayhike/

NC Man finds Trump stick on Bear

A bear wandered into a family’s backyard for some casual garden raiding and bee sniffing when they noticed a collar on it. The collar appeared to be there for researched purposed but when they looked closer (from the safety of their home’s window) they saw a trump sticker on the bear’s collar.

The collar was put there by researchers, but the sticker still remains a mystery. Jennifer Strules, a wildlife biologist at N.C. State University is conducting the North Carolina Urban/Suburban Bear Study in Asheville in conjunction with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. She urges the public to never, under any circumstances, approach a bear that close of range. Especially not to put a sticker on them. “It’s incredibly foolhardy and a public safety hazard for someone to do that,” says Strules.

“The goal of the research was to look at the spatial ecology of black bears in Asheville by capturing bears within a 1-mile radius of the city, placing radio collars on them, which naturally fall off after a certain amount of time, then releasing them, while continuing to track the bears to gather data in order to inform future bear management decisions,” says The Citizen-Times, Ashville.

Coal tax decline forces Boone County WV to slash jobs

Due to a multimillion budget shortfall caused by coal’s decline and a population drop, Boone County has cut multiple government jobs. According to Boone Prosecutor Keith Randolph, the personnel cuts will save nearly $1 million, but will still need to trim more than $1 million of its budget.

Last month was Boone’s second round of layoffs this summer after county commissioners mandated that governmental office leaders make 20 percent cuts to positions and benefits. In the past, this brought in a multi-million dollar surplus from coal tax revenue in efforts to save money.