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Stink bugBy Kym Pokorny

When leaves fall and days get shorter, stink bugs go on the move looking for a warm, dry place for winter. Often that means sharing our homes with these prehistoric-looking insects, whether we know it or not.
This year, it’s difficult not to know. Many homeowners have been inundated as the population of brown marmorated stink bugs (Halyomorpha halys) keeps increasing.

SchoonerBy Finn J.D. John
There was a time, a century and a half ago, when Coos Bay was the shipbuilding capital of the entire West Coast.
It all started, as so much West Coast history does, with the Gold Rush. A young apprentice shipbuilder named Asa Mead Simpson, caught up in the excitement, jumped aboard a sailing ship in which he owned a small percentage and headed for the gold fields.

Fish truck wreckCEDAR FLAT: Oregon State Police troopers are continuing the investigation into Tuesday afternoon's crash on Highway 126 near milepost 11, in Cedar Flat.
Preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 2:50 p.m., a westbound Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) fish delivery tanker driving on the McKenzie Highway was loaded with 11,000 Chinook salmon smolts and water. The vehicle was headed to the Row River near Cottage Grove where they were to be released.

LEABURG: The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife this week released more than 50,000 trout, including nearly 10,000 “pounders,” into Willamette Valley fishing holes in an emergency action triggered by a gate malfunction at Leaburg Dam.
On Monday, ODFW trucked 9,300 one-pound trout and 42,000 fingerlings to six locations from Salem to Eugene after water levels needed to operate Leaburg Hatchery near Springfield became critically low.

LEABUEG: The Eugene Water & Electric Board has closed Leaburg Lake to all boaters following the failure of one of three roll gates at Leaburg Dam on Tuesday.
The unexpected shutdown of the gate closest to Highway 126 on Dec. 23rd leaves the run-of-the-river dam with one functioning roll gate. The middle roll gate experienced a failure in January of 2012 and is currently being repaired at the 73-year-old hydroelectric facility on the McKenzie River. The three 16-feet-tall by 100-feet-wide gates regulate the volume of water spilled from the dam on the river east of Eugene.

MistletoeJust how poisonous is holiday mistletoe?
By eNature
Almost all of us have come across American Mistletoe, the white or green-berried parasitic plant hung in doorways during the holiday season to elicit kisses from those standing beneath it.
Reputed to be the “kiss of death,” Mistletoe (the Phoradendron species is found in North America) is said by some to be so poisonous that humans can be killed if they ingest the leaves or berries.

Engineers investigate Leaburg Dam gate problem

Eugene Water & Electric Board engineers and operations personnel are looking into why one of three roll gates at Leaburg Dam stopped working on Tuesday, Dec. 23.

Flying toiletModular restroom swings into Hendricks Wayside

WALTERVILLE: Passersby may have been surprised last week if they noticed a big crane set up in the parking area at the Hendricks Bridge Wayside Park. Those who timed their passing right got to see parts of a building being hoisted high in the air. The work involved workers from Lane County Parks who tore down an old building and constructed a new restroom facility, along with replacing sidewalks at the popular site. The project, in cooperation with the Oregon State Marine Board, was the first phase of improvements to the Hendricks Bridge Wayside. That initial work was part of grant financed improvements fueled by the Oregon State Marine Board with funds provided by boat registrations. The second phase, according to Mike Russell, Parks and Animal Services Division Manager, is hoped to be completed by the end of 2016. It is designed to expand the parking lot and reconfigure the boat ramp into the McKenzie River. The reconfiguration would orient the ramp at more of a downstream angle to help make it a bit more “maintenance friendly,” Russell noted.

Heavy Rain, Wind and Flooding Predicted: Visitors Discouraged from Visiting Forest this Weekend 

Forest Supervisor Meg Mitchell is encouraging folks to stay home this weekend and avoid traveling in the Willamette National Forest.

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McKenzie River Reflections is the weekly newspaper serving Oregon's McKenzie River Valley. Available by mail for $23/yr in Lane County, $29/yr outside Lane. Digital subscriptions are $23/yr. Subscribe at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/subscriptions-0. Purchase copies online at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/back-issues-0. Read about area communities including Cedar Flat, Walterville, Camp Creek, Leaburg, Vida, Nimrod, Finn Rock, Blue River, Rainbow and McKenzie Bridge.