Ely: Growing Up Strong in the North

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Frogs and toads have adapted to survive in a wide range of environments. Because of this, their presence is usually a good indication that the wetlands, grasslands, and forest where they live are being preserved, and water quality is good. Conversely, when frogs and toads disappear, or are deformed, it can mean the ecosystems that sustain them are ailing. Loons are water birds, only going ashore to mate and to incubate their eggs. Weighing on average about eight pounds, loons generally eat fish; sticklebacks, minnows, and small perch are among their favorites, and are known to remain submerged for several minutes while pursuing prey.

They also eat aquatic insects like dragonfly larvae. Loons defend large territories on freshwater lakes during the late spring and summer breeding season. Male and female loons often return to the same territories year after year. Loon nests are built very close to the water, and often on small islands. Loons migrate from their freshwater homes to the seacoast, and live at sea during the fall and winter. Late in the winter they molt again, replacing their drab winter plumage with the eye-catching black-and-white breeding plumage that most birdwatchers and loon-lovers have come to know.

A few of you may be lucky enough to see a moose. A close cousin of the deer, moose are usually seen near or in the water.

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Dark brown and weighing in at , pounds, they are the largest mammal to be found in the northwoods. Most of the year, moose are relatively silent animals. During the breeding season called the rut , however, their silence is broken. Moose courtship is elaborate, consisting not only of intricate vocalizations but of elegant visual displays and subtle chemical stimuli that is still not fully understood.

Spring is the season of birth for the moose. The calf will attempt to reunite with its Mother, only to be rebutted repeatedly. Ultimately, the rejection is accepted, and the yearling will face the dangers of its world alone. Solitary animals, the red fox is known for its rusty-red coat, white-tipped bushy tail and black legs. Here in Minnesota, variations on this standard coloring include nearly solid black, silver-black, and red bisected by dark bands across the back and shoulders.


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Red fox will eat a wide variety of foods, including snakes, fish, rats, mice, rabbits, birds, ground squirrels, insects, nutes, seeds and berries. Red fox always hunt alone, and hunt primarily during twilight and evening. Often food will will be hidden uneaten under litter or buried in a hole so it can be eaten later. Red fox mate in mid-winter, with the female giving birth to from four to ten young, called pups, in early spring.

Red fox dens can be up to 40 feet deep, and are often abandoned woodchuck or badger holes. But these dens are usually just used as nurseries, as red fox prefer to sleep in the open. The most common of our big-game animals is the whitetail deer. Whitetail deer grow to three and a half feet tall with males weighing 75 to pounds and females weighing 50 to pounds.

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Whitetails are good swimmers and can run up to 40 mph. They mainly feed on twigs, sprouts, bark, and leaves. Antlers, found on males, consist of a main beam with prongs issuing from it. They grow, dry, harden, and are shed each year. Whitetails get their name for their large white tails. Their coloration is reddish brown in summer and blue-gray in winter.

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In the spring, whitetail deer begin recovering from the food winter shortage. The doe give birth to the new year fawns, and bucks begin to grow their antlers for the next mating season. In the summer, the fawns begin to mature, while the bucks choose an area to roam with their bachelor groups.

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In the winter, whitetail deer begin to herd in groups and bucks lose their antlers. Winter is often hard on the whitetail, with deep snow making finding food difficult and extreme cold killing mnay of the young, old, and weak. In fact, encounters which have ended in contact between wolves and humans have been rare. Most wolves are not dangerous to humans and there is a greater chance of being struck by lightning or killed by a bee sting than being injured by a wolf.

A full grown timber wolf weighs between 70 and pounds. Powerfully built with steel-strong jaws, muscular legs, and large feet, the wolf is an efficient predator. The average wolf is mixed gray in color with yellowish sides and darker gray on the back, although individuals vary from almost solid black to buff-white. A wolf pack is a family group consisting of a pair of breeding adults and their young of a year old or more. Only one female in a pack breeds each year.


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  5. Individual packs have territories of 50 to square miles, and the members of the pack usually restrict their hunting and feeding activities to that area. The timber wolves diet consists of a variety of large and small animals, but white-tailed deer make up about 80 percent of it. Beaver are often taken in the spring and summer, while deer, and a few moose, are taken more frequently in winter.


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    Ely Chamber of Commerce E. Sheridan Street Ely , MN Ratings and reviews powered by. Ely says he learned that the family felt that God had supernaturally healed Claude. The song was "just a plain, simple song that we'll never have to face eternity without God," says Terry Mont, who also knew Claude Ely. As an adult, Claude Ely went on the road. He traveled from city to city, wearing a cowboy hat and a white suit. He was a heavyset person, with a gold front tooth.

    His nickname was "The Gospel Ranger. He would drive a car, steering it with one hand, and with the other he would announce with a bullhorn, "Later tonight at , I'll have a tent set up in the middle of town, please come out and experience the fire and Holy Ghost. Mont remembers that the way Claude Ely carried himself, with an old guitar slung on his back, and a big smile. Claude Ely didn't disappoint anyone when he came to town.

    Morgan recalls having trouble with her back as a child. She got in a prayer line at a Brother Claude Ely revival, and she says she was healed. People would show up to revivals because they had heard about this country singer who sang like a black man.

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    Brother Claude Ely would thrash his guitar, shake and gyrate from one part of the stage to the other. Young men would run up to wipe the sweat off his forehead. The company decided to record him live at a Pentecostal service in the courthouse in Letcher County, Ky. King Records set up equipment in the courthouse and made the initial recordings that made Brother Claude Ely popular. And Fontenot says that those recordings were a very valuable historical document because they were the first time people really got to hear a recording of a live Pentecostal service.

    Fontenot says that it might be hard to tease out where different musical traditions come from. But he believes that Pentecostal music had an impact on rock 'n' roll. He says you can hear that impact in Brother Claude Ely's music. Brother Claude Ely died nearly 33 years ago on May 7, He was playing the organ at his church in Newport, Ky. A tape recorder that someone brought to record parts of the service captured his death. On the amateur recording, you can hear screaming and the moaning as people prayed for Brother Claude Ely.

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    He died of a heart attack in front of his entire congregation. When he arrived, there was a handwritten note taped on the cemetery plot. It said, "Dear Brother Ely, You sung it and preached it to us. I know one day you'll come up out of this here ground. Thank you for being so good to us.