What happens to my recycling?

Trash haulers must accept items that counties decide should be recycled. In Eau Claire County, that’s clean glass jars, aluminum, steel, paper, cardboard, and all plastics except those labeled No. 6 (which is very hard to recycle). When the garbage trucks pick up your garbage, they flip a switch and put your recycling in a... Continue Reading →

Why Is That? How Do They Predict Tornadoes?

Spring is often a time of confused weather: warm one day, chilly the next. This kind of unsettled weather can sometimes develop into strong storms, like thunderstorms or tornadoes. Although tornadoes are not as common in the Chippewa Valley as they are in other parts of the Midwest, they do occasionally develop in the area.... Continue Reading →

Why Are Some Squirrels White?

The next time you’re looking out your window, pay attention to the squirrels in your yard. It may be hard to see grey squirrels against tree trunks or shadows on the ground. However, the white squirrels stand out clearly. White squirrels are rare in other parts of North America. White and grey squirrels belong to... Continue Reading →

How Does Salt Melt All That Ice?

Brrr, it’s cold outside! Those trucks are out salting the roads again, making them safe to drive on. But how does salt melt ice? Salty water freezes at a lower temperature than pure water. Water on a road will freeze at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, but salt lowers water’s freezing temperature to 20 or even 15... Continue Reading →

Rain Gardens Keep Green Water Away

Last fall, a rain garden was planted along the banks of Lake Menomin in Menomonie. The people who planted it hope that it will show their neighbors a way to help prevent blooms of cyanobacteria (also called blue-green algae) in Lake Menomin. Cyanobacteria blooms are a big problem. They make people sick and turn lakes... Continue Reading →

Why is That?: Neat-o Mosquito

Neat-o Mosquito is the first of my regular columns in Chippewa Valley Family Magazine. I've always enjoyed science and have long wanted to be a science writer. I've also enjoyed writing for my children, so a science column for kids seemed like a perfect fit. I've long wondered how insects survive the winter, so this... Continue Reading →

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