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Cougar shortage is felt down food chain

Scientists say they are certain that a scarcity of cougars and other large predators is devastating large stands of oak, aspen, cottonwood and even wild- flower blooms in the West because deer and other foraging animals no longer fear predators and are overgrazing as a result.

Oakdale man added to state ag board

Arlan Van Leeuwen, 63, of Oakdale has been appointed to the state Board of Food and Agriculture by Gov. Schwarzenegger. Since 2006, he has owned and been partner of New Hope Dairy. Van Leeuwen owned Fairview Farms from 1974 to 2006. He is a board member of the Dairy Council of California and Agriculture Milk Producers' Security Trust and is a member of Rotary International. The state position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no salary.

Yesteryears

75 YEARS AGO: The Turlock City Council alerted residents not to be alarmed when the city siren began sounding at 6 p.m. The council decided to change the evening sounding from 8 p.m. to 6, leaving the morning siren at 8 a.m. The siren was sounded twice daily to conform to insurance regulations determining that the whistle was intact.

50 YEARS AGO: A Michigan company held an option to purchase 106 acres west of Highway 99 and between the Stanislaus River and Ripon to be used as a small paper mill.

-- Karen Aiello

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