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Tag: colonies

The buzz on Klinker, Md.’s newby bee dog

Sniffing out harmful bacteria in bee colonies is a full time job for Klinker — “our newest employee,” said William Troup, an apiary inspector with the Maryland Department of Agriculture.

A black Labrador retriever trained late last year, Klinker is part of the department’s strategy to detect diseased bee colonies. Specifically, she’s looking for American foulbrood, the most common and destructive bacterial disease facing Maryland’s honeybees.

Klinker’s normal workday consists of walking along rows of hives. When she smells bacteria, she sits, alerting her handler.

A recent Washington Post story described American foulbrood as a bacteria that forms microscopic spores that can survive for decades, spreading quickly from hive to hive, killing bee larvae. If the infection is caught early, the hive can be treated with antibiotics. If not, the hive usually must be destroyed.

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How to handle a feral cat: workshop tonight

Alley Cat Allies, a group that promotes humane care for cats — both those in homes and those on the streets — will conduct free workshops in Baltimore tonight and tomorrow.

Tonight’s session will be at the Maryland SPCA, 3300 Falls Road, from 7 to 9 p.m.

Thursday’s will be at Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter (BARCS), 301 Stockton Street, also from 7 to 9 p.m.

The sessions are part of the organization’s “Every Kitty-Every City Program,” and is open to anyone interested in learning more about dealing with stray and feral cats.

Feral cats are outdoor cats that are unsocialized to humans and therefore unadoptable as pets. These workshops will provide information on how to best care for feral cat colonies through communication, mediation, and trap-neuter-return practices.