In brief: Motorcyclist injured on loose gravel road
A motorcyclist was injured Saturday afternoon after losing control in loose gravel in rural Stevens County.
Robert Bertalot, 50, was westbound on Flowery Trail Road about 11 miles east of Chewelah when he hit gravel on a curve, lost control and was thrown over the handlebars, according to the Washington State Patrol. Bertalot, of Beaverton, Ore., was riding a 2008 Yamaha motorcycle and wearing a helmet.
He was transported by helicopter to Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center with what troopers described as non-life-threatening injuries.
DNR divers back to work after agency’s first death
BAINBRIDGE ISLAND, Wash. – Washington Department of Natural Resources divers return to work this week, following the death of a state diver off the south end of Bainbridge Island.
The department said the death of David Scheinost is the first dive-related fatality since the agency began intensive monitoring of commercial geoducks 30 years ago.
His body was recovered Friday afternoon, not far from where he disappeared Tuesday while collecting the big clams for testing.
The Kitsap County coroner’s office will perform an autopsy on the body of the 24-year-old Puyallup man, and the Department of Labor and Industries is investigating.
All DNR divers were placed on a stand-down after the death. They’ll resume work Monday on geoduck tracts in the Hood Canal near Port Gamble.
Point Defiance Zoo’s Sumatran tiger pregnant
TACOMA – Officials at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma say an endangered Sumatran tiger is pregnant. Jaya is expected to give birth in late August.
Only five Sumatran tiger cubs have been born this year in accredited North American zoos and fewer than 380 live in zoos around the world.
This is the second pregnancy for 9-year-old Jaya, who gave birth to a pair of cubs in May 2010.
A typical tiger pregnancy lasts about four months. If all goes well, zoo officials expect the cubs will make their public debut in early fall.
Group wants trap-free Yellowstone wolf buffer
BOZEMAN – A conservation group wants a trap-free buffer in Montana to protect wolves roaming outside Yellowstone National Park.
The Greater Yellowstone Coalition says the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Commission shouldn’t allow wolf trapping in three management units that cover southern Montana from the Absaroka Mountains to the Madison Range.
Montana wildlife commissioners earlier this month approved new wolf hunting rules that allow trapping and the killing of up to three wolves by one trapper to reduce the state wolf population by 60 percent.
Commission Chairman Bob Ream said the agency considered the group’s comments and that is why it set a wolf quota for one of the management units.
Greater Yellowstone Coalition spokesman Chris Colligan said trapping could decimate the greater Yellowstone wolf population.