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Fall webworms spin nests across the NorthwoodsSubmitted: 08/31/2015

NORTHWOODS - Around this time, people start noticing webbed nests on tree branches in their yards and woods. Fall webworm activity peaks in August. The insects are native to northern Wisconsin and live on hardwoods. Caterpillars form nests and feed on the leaves inside the nest.

"They do make a very messy web nest and people would be seeing that at this time of year," DNR forest health specialist Linda Williams. "The web nests that we see in trees in the fall will be out at the ends of branches."


Fall webworms are active every year, but come out in greater numbers during some years. Last year, the webworms were especially active.

"With these caterpillars coming along and eating the leaves off now, it's not a major health threat to the tree. The tree is already starting to think about shutting down for the winter," Williams said.

DNR forest health specialists also found oak wilt in a new place in the Northwoods. Oak trees in Conover have now been infected.

The DNR also reports northern Vilas County was hit hardest by defoliation from spruce budworm this year.

Story By: Ben Meyer

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 LOCAL NEWS

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MINOCQUA - Almost one in three American girls in 12th grade use tanning beds, according to a survey by the Centers for Disease Control.

But tanning could become illegal in Wisconsin for many of those teenagers under a proposed state law. Bill author Sen. Fred Risser (D-Madison) wants to ban everyone under age 18 from using tanning beds in the state.

It's currently illegal for Wisconsin studios to serve anyone younger than 16. But in the Northwoods, plenty of 16- and 17-year-olds come to places like the Tone Zone clubs in Minocqua and Eagle River to tan before winter and spring events. The manager of Tone Zone, Stephanie Van Holdt, said they're almost all girls.

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RHINELANDER - Three racers from the Hodag BMX Club took first place in their Division at the State Championships in Oshkosh this weekend.

No one in the club placed lower the fourth.

Coach Robbie Deede said the Hodag BMX program continues to grow better and stronger each year.
He was proud of everyone who competed this year.

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MERRILL - Merrill should get a new grandstand by next summer.

The Merrill Committee of the Whole voted on the project last week.

The project will cost $1,149,000.

The city will get insurance money from Lincoln County to pay for it.

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WISCONSIN - Hunters like to predict how the deer season will go this time of year. But the DNR is focused on working with land owners to create better habitat for deer. That could mean a more successful hunt in a few years.

It's working with public and private land owners through the Deer Management Assistance Program. The 2012 Deer Trustees report led to the creation of the program.

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 REGIONAL NEWS

GREEN BAY - Children across Wisconsin will be back in school soon.

People driving are asked to watch out for kids boarding or exiting school buses.

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MADISON - Scott Walker's presidential campaign spokeswoman says the Wisconsin governor is not advocating for building a wall separating Canada and the United States.

Walker spokeswoman AshLee Strong said Monday that Walker's comments on the issue had been misinterpreted.

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MILWAUKEE - The mayor of Milwaukee is proposing equipping all of the city's police officers on the street with body cameras by the end of next year.

Mayor Tom Barrett on Sunday announced the plan, first reported by the Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1JqBjAX ). The proposal comes after tense episodes between police and Milwaukee's African-American community.

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ST. LOUIS - The attorney for convicted killer Roderick Nunley has filed a new appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court in an effort to halt his execution.

Nunley is scheduled to die Tuesday evening for killing 15-year-old Ann Harrison in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1989. The girl was abducted while waiting for a school bus, then raped and stabbed to death.

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