National and State Briefs
Lizard No Longer Threatened
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Wildlife officials say a tiny lizard found on three of Southern California’s Channel Islands is no longer threatened.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Friday it has proposed plans to remove the island night lizard from its current listing as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.
The Ventura County Star says the proposal is based on successful recovery efforts that included removing after nonnative species like goats and feral cats from the islands.
Officials estimate 21 million island night lizards now live on San Clemente Island, about 15,300 inhabit San Nicolas Island and 17,600 can be found on Santa Barbara Island.
The newspaper says the lizard averages from 2.6 to 4.3 inches long.
Comments on the Fish and Wildlife Service proposal will be accepted until April 5.
Geese, Ducks, Eagles Seen In Annual West Virginia Survey
SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – West Virginia’s annual mid-winter waterfowl survey tallied up thousands of ducks and Canada geese well above the 10-year average.
The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources says biologists counted 5,252 ducks and 6,262 Canada geese. Compared to last year’s count, ducks are up 73 percent and geese up 44 percent. Weather fronts moving through the northwest in December contributed to the high numbers.
While mallards, Canada geese and black ducks were most commonly observed, biologists also reported seeing canvasbacks, tundra swans, wood ducks, redheads and others. Nine adult and five juvenile bald eagles were also observed.
The survey was conducted during the first 10 days of January.
W. Pa. Man Tried To Shoot Stepson At Dump
SMITHTON, Pa. (AP) – A western Pennsylvania man has been jailed on charges he tried to shoot his stepson when the younger man arrived at a dump site where his stepfather was shooting guns with two other people
State troopers from the Belle Vernon barracks say 49- year- old Ronald Roth, of Smithton, didn’t explain why he allegedly aimed two shots at 21-year-old Clinton Metz, who wasn’t injured in the incident Saturday afternoon.
Online court records don’t list an attorney for Roth who was arrested Sunday, after police investigated the incident which allegedly occurred about 3 p.m. Saturday at a dump site in South Huntingdon Township.
Roth faces a preliminary hearing Feb. 13 on charges including attempted homicide and reckless endangerment. He remained in the Westmoreland County Prison on Monday, unable to post $25,000 bond.
Pittsburgh Girl, 6, Crashes Car In Bid To See Dad
PITTSBURGH (AP) – Pittsburgh police say a determined 6-year-old girl didn’t hurt anyone when she crashed her mother’s car while trying to drive across town to visit her father.
Police haven’t released the name of the girl whose mother was reportedly still sleeping when the girl took the woman’s car keys about 9 a.m. Sunday.
Police Sgt. Jerry Parker tells reporters the little girl is tall for her age, but adds: “How she knew how to operate a car, your guess is as good as mine.’’
Police say the girl hit two parked vehicles, pushing one of them into a third, before hitting a utility pole.
Police and the girl’s father arrived to take her home after the accident.
Police are still investigating but haven’t said if anyone will face charges.