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attracted (he attention
I tho lower part of llum-
? Kddt valley, Nevada.
1" i-.tr'v !n tr. rrrtr.g of
,"5 : JJftG, and became
"ij vera during the fob
i lowing Hummer, in me
!wl 1 lh lower part of Hum- Vt-f ? ' ' . v' .StS V r , -
V "? --2 !!!. ami became J f V V- .. M v' -'' - " '
?t& : -V- '
1 m imTj mn
5 ? )U 1 ff.H nnJ winter of 1906
i .)f, , J an.; became fpvr
I V J U during th following
3 .i j suniiitrr. In the tall
fj 1 1 an.1 inter of 19i)G-'07
'i (l:imae haJ increased
thrre la the valley wrre seriously in
lured. By October, 1&07, a larse iai I of the
rultivnted lands in this district had
been overrun tv vast numbers of
mice. The yield of bay had heeii re
flured by oi.e-thlrd; potatoes and root
crops were largely destroyed; many
filf&lfft flt'lils were ruined by the mice
entitle ih roots of tbe p'antR. and the
rornplete deptructiou of this, the chief
crop iu the valley, una threatened.
The hrlpht of the plague was
reached la November, when it was es
timated that on many larco ranche
thers were from 8.000 to 12.000 mice
So each acre. Tho fields were riddled
by their holes, scarcely a step apart,
averaged 150 to 175 tc th square rod.
Pitch em bank men ta were honey
combed, and the scene was one of
devastation. Serious looses in hay and
root crops during the tsuiuiiier proved
but a flight forerunner of the damage
wfclch began in the fall with the dis
appearance of green food. Hurrowins
' j. -. -
BY FIELD tflCF. j
PiSTrtiuunii ojon to hill nice
down about the plants, and eitendlng their underground
runs from root to root, they eilher killed or seriously in
jured the alfalfa. Ey November they had destroyed o
Urge a percentage of the plants that many fields were
plowed up as hopelessly ruined. They attacked also the
roots of trees, seriously Injuring or jute destroying or
chards. They killed most of the young Bhade trees planted
along ditches, anil so completely girdled large Loiubardy
and silver poplars that in some cases they caused the
death of even such hardy trees.
The great niajori'y of ranchmen knew neither what to
expect froru such great numbers of lulee nor how t check
thein, Eiicn plague had usually been allowed
to run their course until brought to an end by
natural agencies. Hence it Is not surprlslpg
that in Humboldt valley no concerted or sys
tematic effects to supidess the plague in its
earlier stages were undertaken, but after the
mice swarmed in thousands over the fields
many attempts were made to destroy them by
distributing wheat poisoned with phosphorus.
TtrhM, however, were spasmodic and generally
proved fu'3. a tho fl' h'.s eiperlmented on
were quickly relnvaded from adjoining lands.
While a few fields favorably located ur
aaved by early poisoning, the results of such
uiuivsicmatic efforts amounted to practically
nothing in overcoming or even materially
checking the plague.
The preparation lu general use by rarch
men consisted of wheat treated with strong
solution of yellow phosphorus in carbon bi
HuipWd". a (ht-ap and effective poison for field
mice, but intlamniuble, exploj.lv. and danger
ous to birds. As a result of Its extensive em
ployment In the valley. Cultfornta quail, an In
troduced species, were decimated, and mag-iU-,
crows, meadow iarks, and smaller seed--ath,g
birds Kuffen-d miaely. On one occa
blon t7 horned lurks weie found dead on atut
four acres a few hours after the -poisoned
grain had been distributed. Fortunately hawks,
owls, giilia. aud ravens were not affected, but
many skunks aud doiuestU' cais were killed as
the result of eating mlc.e dying or dead of phos
phorus. Several acrldenW occurred In han
dling the solulloD, and cases of fatul poisoning
of live Flock were Iroijueut.
Several attempts by ranchmen to Induce con
tagious diseases among the mice by means of
tidvertlned bacterial preparations fil'ed.
Chiefly through tha cooperation of Mr.
firttin't S. WlLL, manager of th? large Koder
l uniU, s) bteiiiiitic experiments to destroy the
j . - hi, mi dei taken en ly In Jauuaiy, lituS, by
th biol.ifcli-al survey, ociuoustiated tliut such
liin.ise pl.igites can ba coiUroIb d and the grent-
. .. . ... .. ............ .. i -IM... ...,....J
.U 'f tie survey proved tliat Mice can be
i -lively oestroyed In winter by alfalfa hay
! i ..in ! wl.li aM-ydula sulphate, and this
I i. aiii'iea Viui K -'te-rully recommended In tte
.., on ti,i- r.., ', . and Ai.ker ranches a
f.iie of 7 to 10 it. n r. employed to Sl.-trlbv
1 1 v i .ti lu I he f: i.lrf, with most ivail-fao-(
iv n t-i 'I l ' 'it tie rt.myei ImiJeut
t j I uo i f I I.e. j f ei t.S hU4 t.'a.'U.
Py March 15
cies, had de
mice on sever
al thousands of
they were most
MICE WHICH PHOPUCIP rLUQUE
abundant, and the plague was broken befora
the remaining alfalfa fields bad been overrun.
In scattered center mice continued in de
structive numbers until Msy, but without re
gaining to any considerable extent by repro
duction they steadily decreased. Iter in the
summer they had almost dlKapieared from the
The scourge of mice had swept over about
four fifths of the cultivated area In Ihe lower
part of Humboldt valley. Of 20.000 acres la
alfalfa, about 16.000 were so serlouxly injured
as to require plowing and replanting. Over
most of this area the alfalfa was replaced by
grain crops for the season of lftog at great ex
pends and loss, since good alfalfa lauds pay
gross return of from u0 to 70 per acre,
while good grain crops return only 35 or 110
The shortage of bay on the Hodgers ranch,
where 2.100 acres were fn alfalfa, was estimat
ed at :,000 tons. On Anker's ranch of 6i0 acres
It was estimated at 600 tons. Other rsnches
suffered In protKrt!on. and the loss of hay In
the valley amounted to not less than $..0,'.)o.
V. C. Pitt, who farms 1.400 acres of alfalfa,
eetluiHtes bis complete loss at 10 per acre,
or t-tt.0u0. John Font estimates his damage
on 1,000 seres at I'-'OOoo, and Mr. Anker con
siders his loss on eso acres to be ts.ooo. Mr.
Webb, on the Ux!gcrs ranch figures the com
plete loss on 2,:i'j acres, part of which pays
considerably short of the bt returns, at
A careful consideration of the losr.es In hay,
pasturage, root crops, and trees, the expense
of restoring alfalfa fields to their former con
diiion, and deducting the value of a graia
crop for I'J'5 ehows the average loss to be
about -'0 per acre. On this basis the damaga
to thu valley amounted to :;o0.000.
i'liiuiltum-ousiy with the plague Iq the lower
part of Humboldt valley mice sppeured In
t-normoua numbers farther up the Humboldt
river and Its tributaries a!out Wluneitiucca.
I tattle Mouriiuln, a;.d lu I'ai ruilse tiel LIHIe
J I u m. !-i.K1 r. valleys. As the lands Infested In
those districts were chiefly great iiatuial bay
meadows of red top and wild clover, the dni-S;-e
was less severe. Iioter, ganiens and
li.uiuted all.ii'a fields were m rlouniy tujuted.
A-Wt, reports of mice la sUrn.li.j abunJtuce
were received from King river, Qutnn river,
and Carson and Smith valleys, Nevada; from
Weber, river valley and from Sanpete and
Vtah counties. I'tah, and from Honey Ijike
valley, California. !n none of thess localities
was the damage so extensive as in Humboldt
valley, though plagues of like severity were
On learning of severe damage by mice In
Carson valley, a hundred miles southwest or
lovelocks. In April, 1?0S.
the United States biolog
ical survey sent several
assistants to the valley to
check the threatened
plague. Carson and Hum
boldt valleys are alike In
having large areas in al
falfa bordered by desert
lands, on which field mice
do not live. On a tract of
about !,B00 acres near
Mlndcn mice were found
to be excessively abun
dant, and In some fields
10 to 26 per cent, of the
alfalla plants had already
been destroyed. Several
smaller centers were similarly affected, while
over the valley generally the mice were some
what In excess of normal numbers. This was
a condition similar to that presented In Hum
boldt valley during tho spring of 1907. and
young of el) sixes were abundant. Kxamlna
tion of many females, a large percentage of
which were pregnant, showed an average of
from six to seven young. wbi! In a number as
many as ten were found. Altbf-gti alfalfa was
already well grown, furnishing tun mice abun
dant food, by systematic poisoning, under tha
direction of tho biological survey men. ihey
were so effectively reduced lu the Infested
areas as not to be dangerous again during the
season In other words, a plague was averted.
The results actually obtained here prove
that mouse ptagues can ba checked. It takes
several seasons to produce a general plaguo of
mice, and damage Is noticeable for at least a
season before a serious outbreak occurs.
Though natural agttnclra may be depended
utm to overcome such abnormal numbers
finally, yet, unless active repressive measures
are taken, enormous damage to crops will re
sult. Control, easy at first, becomes more and
more difficult as the mice Increase in numbers,
aud, after a plague Is well established. Is very
In Humboldt valley. In the beginning, a lit
tle poisoning with green alfalfa or crushed
wheat would lave sufflced to prevent the
plague. Hurlng the fall and winter of 190-'07,
when the mice seriously Injured fields here
and there, they could have been destroyed
with poisoned alfalfa hay. Kveu during the
summer of 1!07 concerted and vigorous poison
ing would have destroyed thuru at a cost small
indeed In comparison with the damage they,
Of the many remarkable features of the
mouse plague in Humboldt valley, none Is of
greater slt.i:lfi ance, thun the litre numbers of
birds and leanitrals which gathered to feed
on the itilie. Cud'T rows of trees, about the
bams of feme posts, and scattered every
where In the helils were regurgitated pellet
of tno'isii fur and bones, affording stimulant
proof of tlio services rendered by birds, while
many hol-s and destroyed nest lo the fields
shoai'd the oik done by skunks and coyote.
i-') iiiiei,t as Ihe ambiance rcudiod by
these creatures that It attracted the
attention and secured the protection
of the farmers, many even sparing the
coyote, whose services as a mouse de
stroyer deserve to bo more widely
recognized. In Nevada coyotes were
frequently seen catching mice In the
daytime, and their droppings were
composed entirely of mouse fur and
It Is deplorable that, even when
their usefulness Is as appurent as
here, some r ergons continue to de
nroy valunbb; birds and mammals.
During tho Investigations In H'iml'oUlt
valley no less than i9 large hawks
were found hanRing on wire feucee,
their useful lives ended by thought
The striking evidence of the valu
able service of the natural enemies
of mice teen during this plague Is but
an example of their constant value.
Hawks, owls, gulls, crows, ravens, her
ons and shrikes among birds, and
skunks, coyotes, foxes, weasel, bad
gers, and wildcats among mammals,
habitually prey upn field mice, and
are most valuable in preventing undue
increase of these pests.
Thorough studle have shown
hawks to be most beneficial allies of
the farmer, orrhardist and nursery
tnin. Most species rarely, and many of them
never, attack ioultry. In tho Nevada valleys
all r-pcrie of hawks and owls are distinctly
beneficial, and here rigorous protection cannot
be too strongly advocated.
Among mammaU the weasel and the skunk
are especially worthy of protection. They are
most persistent enemies of mice, and are less
likely to be driven out by civilisation thnn are
other mammals. When particular Individuals
raid jKiultry houses It may be necessary to
destroy them, though usually it Is easy to
make such houses proof against their attack.
Far Irorn being a menace, they are generally
most beneficial mammals, and. living, are
worth many times the value of their pelts.
It is gratifying to note that in many locali
ties tho people are learning to appreciate these
natural enemies of rodent pests, for even more
Important than legislation for the protection of
valuable birds and animals Is the recognition
of their services by the farmers.
In Nevada It was noticed that hacks and
owls hunted chiefly In fields near the few plan
tations of large trees to be found In the val
leys. Tlentath these trees the ground was
fairly carpeted by dlegorged pellets of fur and
bones, represntlng thousands of mice. Whlla
eettaio epecius of hawks seldom frequent
trees, others habitually perch In them, notably
the large rough leg, Swatnson, and red tail,
which wero the most abundant and persistent
It was ei.tliiiSted that during the height of
the outbreak birds and mammals destroyed
some 45.000 n ilci dally. Although their com
bined assaults unnbled did not suffice to abate
the plr-g'ie. yet when th number of mice wa
reduced by poison, and long before It ap
proached the normal, they wero able not only
to prevent Increase, but to cau,e a rapid de
cline, which continued until the mice became
so scarce that the predatory birds and mam
mals were forced to si alter and look else
where for food. It Is fiJr lo Infer that bad
these friend of the farmer been protected In
the beginning they would have been able from
tho first to hold the mice In check, preventing
the abnormal Increase so that there would
have been no plague.
The mouse which produced the plague In Ne
vada, locally known as "black mouse" I the
Carson field mouse (mlcrotus liiontsnus), oue
of the numerous species of short-tailed field
mice or meadow mice, a group which has
caused widespread destruction In various part
of the world. This field mouse Is rather wide
ly distributed In the valleys of I'tah, Nevada,
northeastern California and eastern Oregon.
In Cearly all parts of the I'tilted States short
tailed field mice are among the most abun
dant of mammals, aud a number of species la
widely separated localities have occasionally
exhibited the same tendency to excessive In
crease, Indicating that favoring conditions may
produce mouse plague wherever tho mice e.
1st. Kv n when In urn nil numbers they de
stroy considerable clover and alfalfa and In
jure orchards, ntirser(s and root crops.
This Is the first reeorded lusturiceof an Irrup
tion tif field mice In Nona America attalnlug
the proportion of a plague. The experience
Indicate the probability of future and' even
more dinatitroii outbreaks. In the extentlve
reclaimed aria of the west the abundant food
and luxunou cover furnished by alfalfa field
aud the mile of Irrigation ditches, whiih af
ford these mice suitable home along their
batiks, gristly fsyor their Incrense. while sur
rounding d (. rt condition limit tha spread of
lnlce hrjCU'-l the C'llttvateJ areas
f'-irvl h '.i'.tli, Willi i!( ,leMir, must Urv
ilersiaiel, 'piite rlearly, tlml it involves th
question of rij;lit living with ail tlii tji't.'rt
irni'liee. Wi'.U proper know lrl,-! of what
l lust, Cm h hour of ferriiiou. of enjoy
ment, of contemplation nnj of effort may
lx ma.k.' to contribute to living arifht.
Then tl t!w if medicine may ! ti
pcnc I wild t4 iluuitn,-e, but under re
Uinary ntrul.ii.ina in many instaimra a
simple, whol.-wsisT remedy may lie invalu
nl.ln if taken at tFie profnf viuie and tiwt
California !' Syrup Co. holds that it l
alike imiHrtarit tw ptv:rnt the s;i!i;er
tru'.lifully and to sinp'y the one perfect
laxative to t!iow desiring it.
Conferment Iyr the Company's Syrup of
I'ijrs and I.'li-iir of f-Vnna gives general
ntt.if.-trtioii. To g"t its lieneficiid effects
Lmv the genuiiTO, manufactured by the
California Fig Syrup Co. only, and for sal
by all lea-ling drtrrijista.
MAJOR OR MINOR.
. f A - M
W-r l - -v t t. -m
- :c?s-c, i-
Mr. Lunnon I suppose I may ad
dress you as major, sir! Kvery man
In these southern ii!'i seems to be
a colonel or a major.
Texas Kill I'm nu major; Fin a
RASH ALL OVER BOY'S BODY.
Awful, Crusted, Weeping Eczema on
Little Sufferer- A Score of Treat
ments Prove Dismal Failures.
Cure Achieved by Cuticura.
"My lif.lo boy h.-.d an awful rash all
over lis body atv.l the doctor said it
was eczema. It was terrible, and used
to water awfuily. Any place water
wt nt it would form another aore and it
would become crut-ted. A score or
moro physldana failed utterly and dis
mally in their efforta to remove the
trouble. Thea I wras told to ur the
Cutlcura Keruedies. I got a cake of
Cutlcura Soap, a box of Cutlcura Oint
ment and a bottlo of Cutlcura Re
solvent, and before wo had used half
the Resolvent I could see a change lit
hi m. In cbout two months he was en
tirely well. George F. Lambert, 129
West Centre. St, Mahanoy City, Pa
Bept 2G and Nov. 4, 1907."
hsM Urn a Ctwn. Oory, Praes, oskgtb
That Cot Him.
A theatrical manager delighted In
taking a rise out of conceited or vtilu
Members of Ms company.
"I see you are getting on fairly
well." he remarked.
"Fairly? I am getting on very well."
leplled the hero of the play, promptly.
"I. played Hamlet for the first time
lar.t nlKhL You can see by the pa
pers' glowing criticisms how well I
"I have not read them," replied the
other, quietly, "but I Wa there."
"Oh, you were. Well, you noticed
low vw'linmlngly everything went off?
Of course, I made a bungle of one
I art by falling Into Ophelia' grave,
but I think the audience appreciated
"I know they did." said the man
Lcr, with a slight smile; "but they
were frightfully sorry when you
ill tu be d out of It again!"
How to Car for tha Child.
Perplexed mother writes: "My child
ha snorilng fits after the morning
sponge bath. What would you ad
lseT" Some mothers give their
bahlcft a hypodermic of morphine for
sneexlng. liut w have always felt
that llil-i wns too harsh a remedy,
tilve the baby about three lablesHHin
fuls f Old Tom gin with a little sutcar
and a pinch or lemon peel 1 he sugar
make this remedy more grateful tu
trio child. He sure to keep tills prophy
lactic: away from father.
$100 Reward, $100.
TW f-lt trf Oi will l pi- tt Vwns
SHftl 1 i to ,1 U .1 i Mil- . i .-.. .5 . i wnti. h
fe. I.u at.. lo r.if Ui S'l lt ( -jr, Oi.i
lijkiS le.li ltrrs Oil. to I'-, .w-.y p o.
uu 1.1-i.s l.i em er.'.i.ni Irio. frvil if. I nl.ns
b.H' m r....i.lul .1 uiKi.w. l,,i.u s rt.i.t;w.
b.itl u-,1 'j.. .1 ltj, )ij I urtt, ttr uin tt
Iri'JV'V. fc. U'.il (1M.. I Ui i O.S t,rfM( U.tt)J.-
.iOr. wl 111 nilrni. 01,1 l.-r.ttit I Ih
.U-InO-mi Of O' umm-jv.. Slot rivS'tf lit. tMH-'t
Wn in iiy Sui jiii.ri i, It., (-.j'i.litui.n iv imm.
ittr i.akio- in ..! Mi I if e'"!-71'' S-
Kj'k li !1H li I-.. jru--o- itc.w. r Oji IUcV fhrr
IH.fl it .u.:i.. I.j.ii, I. fc a 1 '-it S
fur j.j..I (..r !i. ,.l lrt;- H jimh
A l li.v r J I 111 N I l I -J.. (ulnSuj, a
s i-.l i !' leu, ii. :v.
lu li.,. I u-ur i k uiotwiua.
His Riyht Ther Was None to D. sputa.
"1 am lit st on Ararat anyhow," he
Herewith lie declined to give a fig
for the (Kile.
Of course it Is possible to con
vince a womau, but she is apt to for
get tnat she has bi-eu convinced, and
then you have to do It all over again.
Some peoi'le would rltnun with
pie-envi si hsn l Tli.y are llie kind
th.it suiter tr.iiu Klii-iiMul'-iu and Numl
i' wlirn tt.ey e.it) s. i Ibun,',,,, Wuard
Od. tlin lit of all pmu lenu'dirs.
In the liiijioni of li, ni::il In, II,,
Lerciioils kills about two prisoners
A H K V ) l Mi Ktl
tlivmiirtt 6 j. ...ji, ii.t . m fr
,'-' -I i t uin n,., m
Ul ll.lUl.i, UJ V L.-Jk tw ItKMIlS.
When I u eiij of yc.,r wotk Is oul
of t';;l,t. luck a!i.rt. I s Uwi-n,