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Missoulian editorial: Missoula hit with heat wave
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Missoulian editorial: Missoula hit with heat wave

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Charred chokecherries to the heat wave that led the National Weather Service to issue a heat advisory from Tuesday through Thursday. The entire Northwestern region of the United States is baking under high temperatures and Missoula is no exception, with hot afternoons hovering at about 100 degrees several days in a row. Next up, Montana can brace for possible thunderstorms and lightning as the high pressure system rolls east.

A nest lined with huckleberries to the successful rehabilitation of an eagle that was found injured about two months ago, and released back into the wild last weekend. The 3-year-old eagle, named Como after a couple of Bitter Root Irrigation district employees discovered the bird on its back at the Lake Como dam, initially faced dicey odds of surviving its massive liver and muscle trauma, but the folks at Wild Skies Raptor Center were able to nurse him back to health and eventually celebrate his return to the skies.

Dried-up chokecherries to the unseasonably warm water and low stream flows on several big rivers in Montana. To protect fish populations in these waters from further stress, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks has placed “hoot owl” restrictions that close fishing from 2 p.m. to midnight on stretches of the Beaverhead, Smith, Shields, Upper Big Hole, Jefferson and Sun rivers.

Well-defended huckleberries to Ann Miller, the managing attorney of the Tribal Defenders Offices for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, who was recently selected for an esteemed national award from the American Bar Association. Miller helped implement the first tribal holistic defense model in the nation, and created the Flathead Nation’s Re-Entry Program to provide support services for people following incarceration. Her lengthy list of community contributions as much as her dedication to public defense work makes Miller a worthy choice for the ABA’s Dorsey Award.

Type O negative chokecherries to the widespread blood shortage that could reduce access to lifesaving transfusions. Turnout from donors has been lower than usual over the past year, and blood donations tend to decline in the summer months as people go on vacation. The American Red Cross is urging donors of all blood types, but especially those with type O blood, to help make sure hospitals have plenty of blood on hand in time for the Fourth of July weekend — and beyond. Schedule an appointment with the Red Cross Blood Donor App, hop online to or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

A mountain of huckleberries to the deal that, if everything works out as planned, will provide for perpetual public use of Marshall Mountain. The agreement allows a new company named Izzy Dog LLC to lease 156 acres of the popular mountain on Missoula’s northeastern side, with an option to later purchase the land. According to a fact sheet provided by the city of Missoula, the city would then be able to lease the land for 18 to 24 months, and for only $10. Then, the city would have the opportunity to buy the property for $1.85 million. If all goes according to plan, Missoulians might be hiking, biking, skiing and yes, picking huckleberries on the slopes of the mountain for decades to come.

This editorial represents the views of the Missoulian Editorial Board: Publisher Jim Strauss, Executive Editor Jim Van Nostrand and Opinion Editor Tyler Christensen. 

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