Lisa Haderlein

remley panther 2I admit it. I love cats. I also love songbirds. And, while my home cats are 100% indoor cats, my work cats are indoor-outdoor cats - in part because they keep the mouse and vole populations under control. (That's Remley doing his best panther imitation to the left.)

The work cats wear collars with bells, but that doesn't keep them from catching the occasional songbird. And it breaks my heart every time I see a dead goldfinch lying in the yard, because I know one of my cats killed it. So, I might as well say that I killed the bird since I let the cat outside.

Well, there is a new product available that was designed by people who love their cats, let them roam outdoors, AND also love songbirds: Birdsbesafe collars. 

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 00:00

Welcome to the Neighborhood

burning brush pile in snowChange is hard. And, every change is for better or worse, depending upon your perspective. Change is particularly hard when it happens quickly. I’m sorry, but telling me “it’s easier if you just rip the bandage off real quick” doesn’t lessen the pain.

I have no doubt the 400 acres of trees and shrubs bulldozed and left burning in giant brush piles looked “worse” to the hundreds of neighbors on the north side of Woodstock a couple of weeks ago.

Monday, 16 February 2015 00:00

Bird Migration over the years

aristotleToday, most people know that birds migrate by flying south during winter, and then fly north again as the days grow longer and temperatures rise. We also understand that some birds fly great distances each year to move from their summer homes to their winter spots.

Did you know that our understanding of bird migration is a relatively recent development?

Wednesday, 19 November 2014 00:00

How Long is Forever?

acoma pueblo viewA friend of mine in New Mexico is descended from a Spanish family that has been in Albuquerque since 1593. His ancestors were among the first settlers given land grants by the church when Spain first settled that area. Wow. Four hundred and twenty-one years ago. Nearly 200 years before the United States was founded.

Thursday, 06 November 2014 00:00

Save Land/Save Ourselves

tiny frog in handOver the past 544 million years, Earth's had five major extinction events. A major extinction is one where between 70% and 90% of all species on the planet are lost – never to be seen again. Each of the five was caused by a cataclysmic event – like the meteor that killed the dinosaurs when it slammed into the Yucatan peninsula 65 million years ago.

Wednesday, 03 September 2014 00:00

Local Farmer/Local Food

farm pic for webMy husband and I have subscribed to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) service since 2007. For 18-20 weeks during the growing season (typically late June to early October), we receive fresh vegetables grown at a local farm. We like knowing the farmers, and have learned to prepare some vegetables we never would have tried otherwise.

Friday, 01 August 2014 00:00

Respecting property lines

prairie ridge 2 385x291I heard a story the other day about a situation where one neighbor did not like another neighbor’s pine tree because the branches grew over part of his yard and he thought the roots were going to crack his foundation. So, the fellow cut all the branches on his side of the tree back to the property line, and then dug a trench along the property line to sever the tree’s roots.

Wednesday, 09 July 2014 00:00

Do you know the UDO?

McHenry-CountyFlagClean2McHenry County government has been working for three and a half years to develop something called a Unified Development Ordinance, UDO for short. Essentially, it is a document that combines the zoning, sign and subdivision ordinances into one document. If done right, a UDO resolves any conflicts that may have existed between the various separate regulations and streamline the regulatory framework for development projects.

Friday, 20 June 2014 00:00

Trees and the Law

tree limbs overhand roofsWhat is the law if a tree is on your property, but the branches hang over the neighbor's property?

Does your neighbor have the right to cut the branches that are hanging over his property?

Sunday, 15 June 2014 00:00

The Buzz about Honey Bees

bee pollenDid you know that nearly one-third of the produce (fruits, nuts, vegetables) consumed in the US is pollinated by honeybees? And without honeybees, those items would not be available – at least not in the quantities they are today.