DEAR SUN SPOTS: Could you please tell me if the newspaper Le Messager is available somewhere for research? I have some relatives who might have been mentioned in articles from around the 1920s or ’30s. I would like to be able to read about them.
Secondly, a teacher at a Christian school in South Paris wrote to Sun Spots earlier this year asking for art supplies. When I tried the email it didn't go through.
If she is still in need of supplies, would she please write again with the way to contact her for donations to the school art department? I believe her name was Maria Whitney.
Thank you. — No Name via email
ANSWER: Sun Spots checked with James Myall at the Franco-American Collection at USM LAC. He said the collection does have “some hard copies of Le Messager, but your reader would be best served by going to the Lewiston Public Library, which has the entire series on microfilm. If her relatives were notable in some way, we might have information on them at the collection. She can contact me at 753-6545 or email@example.com.”
As for the second part of your query, Sun Spots checked her archives and found that Maria gave a phone number, 461-1834, as well as an email, firstname.lastname@example.org, when she wrote on Oct 7, 2011.
DEAR SUN SPOTS: I have an improvement to the fruit fly trap you wrote about Oct. 10. I also use apple cider vinegar with a drop of dish soap to catch the bugs, but I cover the bowl with wax paper or plastic wrap and poke small holes in the top. A wooden skewer works well. The bugs are attracted by the vinegar and after sitting on the cover for a while, they can't resist crawling in and then are trapped. An open bowl gives them too many opportunities to change their mind or get scared off! — Betty Jespersen, Farmington
DEAR SUN SPOTS: Regarding your reader’s dilemma with fruit flies, the very best way to kill these annoying pests is indeed with vinegar and dish soap. Apple cider vinegar is best.
Another tip is to try not to leave any food, not just fruit, sitting in the sink overnight. Kitchen and bathroom sinks are also a breeding ground for fruit flies. Never leave damp sponges, towels or food in the sinks as well as wet clothing, such as bathing suits, wet towels and dishcloths, hanging around for long periods of time.
Keep your trash can covered; it’s best to have one with a lid if possible. The rotting garbage is a buffet for not only fruit flies but other pests, too.
Depending on how bad the infestation is, it should take about a week to kill every single one, but within two hours max you will see dead fruit flies in these traps. During spring/summer months it's a great idea to just leave a couple traps out all season (cleaning out and making new ones every two weeks) to make sure fruit flies never come back.
Another surprising fact about these pests is the females give birth every 60 hours during which they have this "cozy" breeding grounds available. As you can imagine, this makes killing them an ongoing battle at first at least until you get ahead of the problem. — Elizabeth Kaempf, email@example.com
DEAR SUN SPOTS: In answer to No Name of Mexico who is wondering how to get rid of fruit flies, I have found that Tomcat Household Pest Glue Board did the job well. I no longer have fruit flies. I used just a couple of them in my five-room and bath home.
Just stand them or hang them, but be patient. It takes a few months to kill all of them if you have a large infestation.
I found them in the Home Depot in the pesticide department. — Dotty, Auburn
This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.