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Letter: What Would Rockefeller Say About Swans?

When former Governor Nelson Rockefeller created the Department of Environmental Conservation on the first Earth Day in April 27, l970 it was designed to create a secure energy supply without creating undo damage to the environment. I am sure he never would have imagined that this agency would go rogue and aim to eradicate an entire species of a bird population, namely the mute swans.

The agency has declared war on these majestic and peaceful birds, which up until now were federally protected, based on a report with rather flawed data. By their own admission these “experts” had difficultly conducting their studies and much of their data was extrapolated from other states and research projects dating back to the l997. I have read the report which you can upload on their web site and see for yourself.

These non-native birds brought over from Europe have coexisted peacefully with humans for decades with no ill consequence. As an emergency room physician who practiced for over 20 years I can testify that I have treated many bites including, dog, cat, skunk, raccoon, fox, snake, and human bites, but never was anyone a patient in the er because of a swan attack. Will they protect their young and become aggressive when they feel their offspring is in danger, yes, but so do other species as well.

The majority of the 2,800 swans according to the report are based on Long Island, approximately 1,900. Most of them can be found swimming peacefully in ponds and canals. The report claims that their feces, which carries e. coli is deposited in the water, not on land such as Canadian geese. The water they swim in is not our drinking water, they have not proven it has harmed other species and even more bizarre, all feces, humans included, contain e. coli.

The report is flawed on so many levels and data is not supported. Also what the report fails to take into account is that little storm last year known as “Sandy,” which disrupted the entire coast of Long Island, destroying many wetlands. This declaration of species eradication by an overzealous agency needs to be stopped and I urge Long Islanders to contact their legislators to put an end to this. This agency of 3,000 people needs to be culled, beginning with its commissioner who would allow such a waste of our tax dollars. It is important that we become good stewards of this earth and learn to value all species, not declare one species more valuable than another. It’s time we learn from our mistakes and not repeat them.

Dr. Cynthia Paulis

News

Two hundred business students from high schools across Nassau County, including Massapequa High School, competed for scholarships and cash awards—more than $33,000 in all—from various sponsors at Nassau County’s annual Comptroller’s Entrepreneurial Challenge.

The events on Sept. 11, 2001 had a profound effect on nearly all in the tri-state area, but for first responders, the effects were overwhelming. Long-time Massapequa resident Michael Smith, a member of the New York Fire Department, experienced those effects firsthand.

“While I’ve always been a person that could appreciate life, after 9/11 I became so distraught,” he said. “I realized I need to do something I want to do — something I love to do.”

A 30-year veteran of the fire department, Smith retired in 2002. He and his wife of 33 years, Teresa, began to look for a place they could enjoy life. This mindset brought them to the East End of Long Island, where they often went for day trips. They settled down in a home in Orient Point in 2004; in a home that needed quite a bit of work. And when it was time to landscape the property, a new idea took root — a vineyard.


Sports

Massapequa athletes recently received honors from their coaches at Kellenberg Memorial High School.

Each season, the coaches of all of the Kellenberg teams choose one member of their team who stands out as an athlete that has worked hard to improve themselves in their chosen sport.

The Farmingdale State women’s lacrosse team won the first game of their Spring Break trip to North Carolina with a victory over Greensboro College. In wet and muddy conditions, the Rams (8-1) held an 8-5 lead at the half and took the eventual 13-10 win.

In the first half and tied 2-2, the Pride (7-5) pulled ahead 4-2 with two unassisted goals by junior attack Nadya Fedun. Farmingdale State answered with four straight scores for a 6-4 advantage, on goals by juniors Alyssa Handel, Nicole Marzocca and Massapequan Jackie Kennedy.

Sophomore attack Ashlynn Parks put Greensboro within a goal at the 7:03 mark, but the Rams scored two more to lead 8-5 at the halftime break.

Calendar

Free Wine Tasting

Friday, April 18

Boating Course

Saturday, April 26

Massapequa Memories

Tuesday, April 29



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com