If you have been wondering what progress is being made toward saving the vanishing American eagle, consider this:
Wyoming rancher Van Irvine was charged with eight counts of shooting antelope in an area closed to hunting, seven counts of hunting without a license, seven counts of abandoning a game animal and letting it needlessly go to waste and seven counts of using a game animal for bait. He pleaded no defense and was fined the minimum, $675.
Audubon Society members had turned up 22 dead eagles, poisoned by thallium sulphate, in the area, and federal investigators found antelope carcasses saturated with the poison on Irvine's Diamond Ring Ranch.
Not only did Irvine get off with the lowest possible fine, he was commended for breaking the law by the county prosecutor, John Burk, who said:
"I admire and respect Irvine for accepting full responsibility. Except for mineral interests, ranching is still the backbone of the state. Predator losses are a problem for all of them and predator control is more important than the loss of a few eagles."
The notion that the athlete, if he pursues sport too strenuously, will one day develop a condition known to medicine as "athletic heart," is hard to put down. But it is beginning to be expunged from the literature of the M.D. This month's Journal of the Medical Society of New Jersey is a help in that regard.
The Journal quotes from Macmillan's just published Encyclopedia of Sports Sciences and Medicine and from a study by Dr. Dale Groom of Oklahoma, on the exceptional endurance capacities of the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico (SI, Jan. 6, 1967).
"For the Tarahumara, running is the principal sport," the Journal says. "It is at the same time his livelihood, his recreation and his criterion for success, since he hunts deer by the simple method of running after one relentlessly for a couple of days until the animal drops from exhaustion. He also catches wild turkeys by pursuing them until they can no longer rise from the ground in flight.
"At play, he does even more prodigious feats. His 'kickball races,' played by teams of men kicking a wooden ball about the size of a tennis ball carved by a machete, extend for distances up to 150 miles. And this is no relay, each man runs the route."