Wildlife biologist Kory McLellan shoots off pyrotechnics to scare birds away from the airfield at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.
Mariette Adams / U.S. Air Force

The Air Force Is Trying New Strategies To Battle A Constant Problem: Birds On Airfields

Fireworks, drones, and habitat relocation projects are among the ways that Air Force biologists are fighting the expensive and potentially deadly problem of bird strikes.

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NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live. We're calling the project "Back at Base." This is the second of four reports this week about the National Guard.

Inside the hangar at Washington state's Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), the Army National Guard mechanics are busy maintaining a neat line of Blackhawk and Chinook helicopters.

Karen Kozub / Creative Commons

While suicide rates remain high among recent veterans, a new study found that deploying to a war zone doesn't necessarily increase a service members' suicide risk.


Comedy Central

The Department of  Veterans Affairs has announced it will allow more veterans to seek medical care closer to home.  The policy change came less than 24 hours after Jon Stewart featured a KUOW story on Comedy Central's "Daily Show." The story -- part of the American Homefront Project -- described the problems of rural veterans who seek medical care.

Patricia Murphy joins host John Hockenberry on PRI's "The Takeway." They talk about her coverage of the VA's "Choice Card" program, which is falling short of its goals of providing timely health care to rural vets.

Veteran Gloria Hoeppner holds her Choice card.
Patricia Murphy/American Homefront

A $15 billion federal program intended to improve veterans' health care is off to a rocky start, and some members of Congress are calling for significant reforms.

Washington state has told the U.S. Navy it can’t use state land to conduct electronic-warfare training on the Olympic Peninsula.

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