February 3 - 1936: Ice-locked Nantucket threatened with famine

2006: Coyotes wear out their welcome. All hope lost for Lady Luck
The ferry Nobska trapped in ice off Nantucket during another cold winter, that of 1964. Nobska.org.

2006: State's coyote population reaches saturation point

In every town except on the Vineyard and Nantucket

A usually shy but adaptable predator, coyotes have made their home in the suburbs and rural countryside, but on this day in 2006 state official felt they have apparently run out of room in the Bay State.  According to wildlife experts and officials, the population of at least 8,500 coyotes in Massachusetts is stable and unlikely to increase because the predatory canines have saturated all available habitat.

"Leave cats inside or accept that when you let them outside they're part of the food chain," said Jonathan Way, author of "Suburban Howls." 

Coyotes are not indigenous to Massachusetts. The eastern coyote didn't move into the state's central and western regions until the 1950s. By the 1970s, coyotes had moved into eastern Massachusetts and Cape Cod.  They now live in every town statewide except for the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket.  The coyote hunting season lasts four months each year, from November through February. In recent years, the number of coyotes killed annually through hunting has more than doubled.

1936: The day Nantucket almost starved, airlift begun to prevent famine

On this day in 1936, as reported by the Associated Press:

"A large transport plane bearing more than 1,500 pounds of foodstuffs took off from East Boston airport today to prevent a threatened famine on the ice-locked island."

It was the second time in three years that bitterly cold winters surrounded Nantucket with ice and kept ferries from delivering food, fuel and other supplies.

The 3,800 residents of Nantucket were "cut off from the world by six miles of ice surrounding their island," reported the International News Service, INS (which merged with United Press in 1958 to become UPI).

"Even coast guard cutters crashing steel prows into the ice were unable to get into the harbor," according to INS. "No ship has touched the island shores since early Saturday," two days earlier.

Ice also covered Provincetown harbor for the first time in 20 years and prevented vessels from passing through the Cape Cod Canal.

2006: 'Whatever happened, happened quick' to the Lady Luck

Father of fisherman lost at sea calls efforts by Coast Guard to find son's boat 'Herculean'

After a 40-hour search that covered 8,140 square miles, the Coast Guard announced it had suspended its search at 5:34 p.m. yesterday. Missing and presumed dead are the captain and owner of the ship, Sean Cone, 24, of North Andover, and his crewman, Dan Miller, 21, of North Hampton, N.H.

lady_luck300The first sign of a problem with the Lady Luck came around 2 a.m. Thursday, when an electronic signal from the ship indicated it may have been in distress. About 55 minutes later, the Coast Guard transmitted a general alert to boaters in the area. At 3:18 a.m., the Coast Guard was able to pinpoint the location of the Lady Luck's emergency beacon - a device that detaches from a fishing boat when the crew launches it, or when a boat is at least 3 meters under water.

Winds were high the night the Lady Luck disappeared, but the Coast Guard has not said if the conditions were severe enough to have caused significant ice buildup.

Last week, a New Bedford fishing boat sank off Nantucket, its deck and rigging caked with ice.. A half hour later, a Falcon jet took off from Cape Cod, and found the beacon, called an EPIRB, by 4:30 a.m. It dropped a life raft and continued to search.


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