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Madelyn Beck

Madelyn Beck is a regional Illinois reporter, based in Galesburg. On top of her work for Harvest Public Media, she also contributes to WVIK, Tri-States Public Radio and the Illinois Newsroom collaborative.

Beck grew up on a small cattle ranch in Manhattan, Montana. Her previous work was mostly based in the western U.S., but she has covered agriculture, environment and health issues from Alaska to Washington, D.C.

Before joining Harvest and the Illinois Newsroom, she was as an energy reporter based in Wyoming for the public radio collaborative Inside Energy. Other publications include the Idaho Mountain Express, E&E News/EnergyWire, KRBD Rainbird Radio, the Montana Broadcasters Association, Montana Public Radio and the Tioga Tribune.

A newly published study out of the University of Idaho suggests that the higher perceived risk of a disease, the more likely someone is to vaccinate.

A new study adds to the growing evidence that cities with more undocumented immigrants don’t see more crime because of them.


Firefighters have long studied how fires behave to figure out where they’re going and how to keep people safe. But wildfires are becoming more unpredictable.


A bipartisan group of Western lawmakers have signed onto a new federal bill that aims to reduce the damages of wildfire.


Colorado regulators are now requiring oil and gas operators to monitor fracking emissions earlier and more often, and provide that data to local governments. Both industry officials and regulators supported the move. But concerns persist, like the fact that the rules allow oil and gas operators to choose how to monitor their own emissions. Regardless, environmental groups see Colorado as a leader in emission monitoring in the region and hope other states follow suit.

Large numbers of migratory birds have reportedly dropped dead in New Mexico and Colorado.

There’s still confusion over the deaths, like how many died and what exactly killed them. However, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service believes the bird deaths in Colorado and New Mexico were caused by an unusual cold front.


Finding election poll workers is usually a challenge, but it’s even harder this year.


The Mountain West has seen the largest increase in mask-wearing over the last few months than any other region, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.


The lab going up in Boise, Idaho, will be part of a new, larger U.S. Geological Survey building. And it would test environmental DNA, or eDNA, from around the nation. That is, instead of trying to find an invasive animal, like a single mussel or fish in a lake, scientists could just sample water to test for DNA of certain species.


William Perry Pendley’s nomination to lead the Bureau of Land Management may have been pulled, but he’s still effectively leading the organization. Two lawsuits are still trying to put that to an end. 


COVID-19 infections are waning slightly in the rural U.S., but the number of deaths there is still climbing. 


A U.S. Postal Service employee faces jail time after allegedly throwing out critical immigration documents.


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has greenlighted the expansion of hunting and fishing access to more than 2.3 million acres and 147 wildlife refuges and fish hatcheries across the nation.


President Donald Trump says an executive order he signed on Saturday funds a $400 weekly supplement to unemployment benefits. But it likely won't be as helpful as it seems.


New leadership is cutting costs at the U.S. Postal Service in a way that's backing up mail around the country, and many are concerned that could impact mail-in ballots ahead of the election on November 3. In the Mountain West, how your ballot could be affected depends on where you live.


COVID-19 cases are still increasing around the Mountain West, and wait times to get test results are getting longer for many.


The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the nation to figure out something it's tried to do for years: increase access to telehealth.

That’s true across the nation and in rural Western states like Idaho. 


Two-thirds of Americans think the federal government should be doing more to reduce the impacts of climate change, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.


As the COVID-19 pandemic wears on, a new survey shows that depression is worsening across the nation and the Mountain West.


Across the nation, Black babies have some of the highest rates of infant mortalities and birth outcomes such as low birthweight, according to a new report by nonprofit Zero to Three.

 


This week's Supreme Court ruling shielding LGBTQ employees from discrimination effectively evens out a patchwork of protections in the Mountain West.


The pandemic has beef markets on a roller coaster, and Shohone, Idaho's Amie Taber is among the ranchers along for the ride.

 


Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said in a virtual town hall Tuesday that the reservation hit its peak number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and emergency room visits a few weeks early thanks to social distancing and mask-wearing.

 


When I was little, my dad and I would walk behind our house in west-central Montana and stare at the ground. And then walk. Stare. Walk. Stare. We'd do this for hours, searching for that tasty, edible and highly prized morel mushroom.


A recent study shows that humans have been living in a specific temperature "niche" for at least 6,000 years, but climate change could force billions of people to live in areas outside of the niche by 2070. That could be intolerably hot, even lethal, for many of them.  

Chris Descheemaeker ranches black angus, red angus cross with her family outside of Lewistown, Montana. The coronavirus pandemic, she says, comes after a few tough winters and an already tough market.


Many big cities are seeing the number of COVID-19 cases fall, but rural counties are seeing the opposite, according to a new analysis by the Daily Yonder, a rural nonprofit news outlet.

 


There’s been too much oil on the market since well before the coronavirus outbreak. But a recent agreement to cut production won’t be enough to prevent states in the Mountain West from taking a big hit.

 


A new study has found that long-term air pollution increases COVID-19 mortality rates.

 


Imagine something like a velociraptor, but faster and stronger, and with feathers.


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