Animal Health

Did you know that Colorado has a State Veterinarian?  The Colorado Department of Agriculture's Animal Health Division, of which the State Veterinarian is a part, work to ensure the health and safety of livestock, horses, pets, and other domesticated animals.  Helpful information you can find on their website includes
  • Bringing pets to Colorado from other states or countries
  • Emergency preparedness and response for livestock
  • Health certificates and ear tags
  • Laws and regulations
  • Notification of disease outbreaks
  • Registering dangerous dogs 
  • Reportable livestock diseases
  • Reporting suspected animal abuse
  • Tips for keeping horses healthy at fairs and events
For further resources, search our library's online catalog.


Time Machine Tuesday: Avalanches

Avalanche danger is nothing new in Colorado.  Forty years ago, the University of Colorado's Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research issued their publication Century of Struggle Against Snow:  A History of Avalanche Hazard in San Juan County, ColoradoThe publication, which can be viewed online via our library, examines avalanches and avalanche disasters in the San Juan region of Colorado from 1875-1975.  "San Juan County was a booming gold- and silver-producing area, reaching its peak in population, mineral production, and, correspondingly, avalanche deaths and destruction of property during the period 1880 through World War I." 

According to the publication, major avalanche disasters occurred in March 1884, February 1891, and March 1906.  The latter avalanche took the lives of twelve men employed by the Shenandoah Mine. 

Using weather data, photographs, newspaper stories, personal interviews, and other accounts, the publication tells a fascinating story about the danger of avalanches -- their causes, geographic areas, case studies, and human stories.  Century of Struggle Against Snow gives the historical background on avalanches while the companion reports Avalanche Release and Snow Characteristics, San Juan Mountains, Colorado and Avalanche Atlas: San Juan County provide further data and technical information.

For more on avalanches yesterday and today, search our library's web catalog.


Loan Repayment Program for Healthcare Professionals

The State of Colorado has found a clever way to encourage health care practitioners to move to rural and underserved areas where their services are badly needed.  It is called the Loan Repayment Program.  By agreeing to practice in underserved areas for three years, new health care professionals can receive repayment funds for their student loans.  This month, 33 new health care providers received nearly $2 million in loan repayment in exchange for their agreement to practice in places like Burlington, Rifle, Holly, and Monte Vista.  Other practitioners will stay in the metro area but will practice at community clinics, homeless services, and other agencies providing healthcare to underserved and impoverished populations.  To view the list of the 33 providers and where they're heading, see the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE)'s February 8 press release.  To learn more about the program,visit the CDPHE's "Health Professional Loan Repayment" website.


Special Education Resources

Students with disabilities, gifted students, and culturally/linguistically diverse students are among the populations served by special education.  Whether you are an educator or a parent/family of an exceptional/special needs student, the Colorado Department of Education has many resources on their Special Education website that can help you navigate the special education process.  Our library also has a number of resources on special/exceptional education.  Some highlights include:
Publications listed above that lack hyperlinks can be checked out in hardcopy from our library.  For more resources search our web catalog using keywords such as:
  • accommodations
  • child identification; early intervention; intervention
  • culturally or linguistically diverse 
  • exceptional children; exceptional education; exceptional students; exceptional student services 
  • Exceptional Children's Education Act (ECEA); Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
  • gifted; gifted and talented; gifted students; twice exceptional
  • handicapped children; handicapped students (if searching for older information)
  • learning disabilities; students with disabilities
  • special education; special needs
  • specific disabilities, i.e. autism; deaf; deafblind; dyslexia; speech-language pathology; visually impaired
  • transition planning; transition requirements


Time Machine Tuesday: Sugar Beets

A century ago sugar beets were one of Colorado's most important agricultural industries.  More than twenty sugar refineries could be found in Colorado in the first half of the twentieth century, according to an article in the Colorado Encyclopedia.  Many of these were located in Colorado's South Platte River Valley, but factories were located in various parts of the state.  The first sugar beet factory, in fact, was located in Grand Junction.  This factory was established by Charles Boettcher, and eventually Boettcher's Great Western Sugar grew to ten factories in the South Platte and Arkansas river valleys.  Although Great Western (or GW) was the largest, there were other companies as well, such as the American Beet Sugar Company.     

A sugar beet worker, circa 1920s.  Courtesy Denver Public Library.
The growth of the sugar beet industry after 1898 was spurred in part by the Spanish-American War and Americans' wish for local, rather than Caribbean-produced, sugar.  Sugar beet cultivation also benefited the ranching industry, as beet parts not used in sugar making were fed to livestock.  The increased production of sugar beets and the refining of sugar from beets created the need for many agricultural workers.  The industry employed numerous workers from various ethnic groups including Mexicans, Native Americans, Germans from Russia, and Japanese.  During WWII, Japanese-American internees from the Amache relocation camp were often put to work in the beet fields, as were German and Italian prisoners-of-war. 

Because sugar beets were such an important part of the agricultural industry in Colorado in the early twentieth century, the Colorado Agricultural College (today's Colorado State University) published numerous agricultural bulletins with research results, worker information, and growing tips for sugar beet cultivation.  These bulletins provide an interesting look at the culture and operations of this important part of Colorado's agricultural story.  Some titles available from our library include:
Although sugar beet production reached its height in the early decades of the twentieth century, production continued throughout the century.  Today, there is still one sugar beet refinery, in Fort Morgan.  Great Western Sugar has morphed into the grower-owned Western Sugar Cooperative, which runs the Fort Morgan facility and a handful in other western states.  For more about the sugar beet industry today, see CSU's Estimated Economic Impact of the Colorado Sugar Beet Industry.

*Charles Boettcher, Colorado's pioneer sugar beet industrialist, also founded the Ideal Portland Cement Company.