Results for " animal news "
Blackie The Hippo, Oldest Hippopotamus In North America, Euthanized Due To Age-Related Ailments
Blackie the hippo, said to be the oldest Nile hippopotamus in North America, was euthanized because of age-related ailments early this week.

Blackie The Hippo (Photo courtesy of Cleveland Metroparks)
Blackie the hippo died at age 59 in his off-exhibit enclosure in Cleveland Metroparks Zoo on Monday. He was believed to be the oldest male Nile hippo ever recorded as well.

During his time at the Zoo, Blackie the hippo sired three male offspring and was a favorite of many guests and staff members.

In 2008, the Cleveland Metroparks built a special addition with a heated pool onto the Africa barn for Blackie because of his advancing age. He lived out his last several years contentedly eating copious amounts of produce and floating lazily in a pool he didn’t have to share.

Blackie arrived to the Zoo from Africa in 1955 when he was about one year old, and generations of Clevelanders grew up seeing him in the former Pachyderm Building. He was born at the Mount Meru Game Sanctuary in Tanzania and brought to Cleveland by Zoo officials and board members, including Vernon and Gordon Stouffer, who were gathering animals on a safari, which was an acceptable method of acquiring zoo animals prior to the passage of the Endangered Species Act.

Hippos typically live between 30-40 years in the wild and can live a few years longer in captivity. They are herbivores, and in the wild they graze mostly on grasses. They eat a wider variety of foods in the zoo including hay, vegetables, fruits and other produce.

The mammals spend the majority of their time in the water, hence their name which is from the ancient Greek for “river horse.” Despite the name, however, the hippo’s closest biological relatives are whales and dolphins.

Hippos are classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Hippo populations are declining due to habitat loss and poaching but are still found over a large range of eastern and southern Africa.

noypi Thursday, January 16, 2014
Asian Unicorn Photographed In Vietnam For First Time In 15 Years
The Asian Unicorn has been spotted in Vietnam for the first time in the 21st century.

Asian Unicorn In Vietnam (Wikimedia Commons)
Officially called a saola, the critically endangered Asian Unicorn was photographed in September by a camera trap set by WWF and the Vietnamese government’s Forest Protection Department in the Central Annamite mountains.

"When our team first looked at the photos we couldn’t believe our eyes. Saola are the holy grail for South-east Asian conservationists so there was a lot of excitement," said Dr. Van Ngoc Thinh, WWF-Vietnam’s Country Director. "This is a breath-taking discovery and renews hope for the recovery of the species."

The Asian Unicorn looks like a small deer or antelope with two horns and are thought to number from a few dozen to a few hundred. The last confirmed record of the rare species in the wild was in 1999 from camera-trap photos taken in the Laos province of Bolikhamxay. It was last sighted in Vietnam in 1998.

In the area where the Asian Unicorn was photographed, WWF’s Preservation of Carbon Sinks and Biodiversity Conservation (CarBi) Programme has implemented an innovative law enforcement model in which Forest Guards are recruited from local communities, and co-managed by WWF and Vietnamese government counterparts, to remove snares and tackle illegal hunting, the greatest threat to the saola’s survival.

The Asian Unicorn was discovered in 1992 by a joint team from Vietnam’s Ministry of Forestry (now called Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development) and WWF surveying the forests of Vu Quang, near Vietnam's border with Laos. The team found a skull with unusual horns in a hunter's home and knew it was something extraordinary. The find proved to be the first large mammal new to science in more than 50 years and one of the most spectacular species discoveries of the 20th century.

noypi Thursday, November 14, 2013
African Serval, Domestic Cat Crossbreed Shot Dead In Detroit
A Savannah cat, a crossbreed between an African serval cat and a domestic cat, made headlines this month after residents of a northeast Detroit neighborhood spotted the huge feline roaming around the streets for several days. Rumors that the exotic-looking animal was dangerous also circulated.

One-year-old Savannah cat (Wikipedia)
Latest reports say the cat, named Chum, has been shot and killed by one of the residents. The body of the 25-pound, 3-year-old Savannah cat was found in a garbage can on Monday evening.

The cat's owners, who raised Chum since 4 months old, are heartbroken about the incident. They claim that the cat escaped from their house through screened-in window and that they have been looking for her since. Chum did not have a microchip.

"It was simply ignorance. A Savannah cat is a cross between an African Serval and a domestic cat, and that is it. They’re larger cats, they’re very beautiful, they have a lot of stripes and spots, which I think was more intimidating to people than even the size of the cat, because the cat wasn’t overly huge, about 25 pounds and maybe when it was sitting was probably two feet tall. But they’re very sweet animals, they’re kind of like the dog of the cat world," Laura Wilhelm-Bruzek, with Paws for the Cause Feral Cat Rescue, told WWJ Newsradio 950.

She added, “I think people can’t just go around shooting things they don’t understand. I think we need to be a little bit more respectful of the animals and human beings around us. I’d love to see someone look into it and investigate it. But I’m not holding out a lot of hope. This whole thing from the beginning has just been a mess.”

noypi Wednesday, August 28, 2013
World Record Halibut Caught By German Angler
World record halibut will have a new face to beat as soon as the International Game Fish Association confirms a German national’s claim of having caught the largest halibut via a rod and line.
World record halibut (Photo courtesy of Angelreisen Hamburg)

Marco Liebenow, a fisherman from Germany has allegedly hauled the largest Atlantic halibut to date from the waters of Norway during his fishing trip with Angelreisen Hamburg . It is said to weigh at an astonishing 513 pounds, apparently beating the current world record of a Pacific Halibut at 459 pounds set in 1996 and another Atlantic Halibut at 418 pounds set in 2004.

It is said that Liebenow and 3 other companions have taken an hour and half to bring this 9 feet long Atlantic Halibut to shore. As this halibut is too large to be heaved into their fishing boat, they have had to tie the fishtail using a rope and dragged it towards the wharf.

Liebenow is ecstatic with the experience. According to David Bottcher, the representative of the angling tour company who has translated the non-English speaker Liebenow’s thoughts that “It took four men to bring it towards their 19-foot boat and then they could only put a sling around its tail and pull it back to the harbour. Marco was elated afterwards and celebrated with the boat skipper and their housekeeper by having a few beers. Before he left for the trip, he called us first to ask for a few hints about how and where to fish - I guess our advice paid off. It looks like it is a world record for a halibut but we are waiting to have it confirmed.”

Liebenow is definitely now the envy of angler fanatics.

noypi Sunday, August 18, 2013
Dog Buries Dead Puppy In Heartbreaking Viral Video
A dog buries a dead puppy in a viral video that has been melting the hearts of many netizens.

Dog buries puppy (Youtube Screencap)
In the moving video, the stray dog can be seen gently using her snout to cover the carcass of the puppy, which she stumbled upon a ditch somewhere in Iraq. The mongrel spends about three minutes in burying the corpse before silently turning away.

It is not yet certain whether the dog was related to the puppy or how the latter died. But the clip has divided viewers, with some saying it was an astounding act of mourning and others arguing that the dog did it to preserve the animal the same way it would bury a bone.

"The dog is burying the other dog to conceal it so it may return later to eat it. Dogs do this with many animals, not just dead puppys (sic), get a grip people, it's a natural reaction to stock food," Youtube user Ametkhoshascake's comment reads.

Check out the said viral video below:
What's your take on this? Feel free to comment below.

noypi Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Albino Gorilla Mystery Solved
Snowflake, an albino gorilla that died 10 years ago, was the only known white gorilla that ever existed on Earth. The primate's unique color had long since pushed scientists to study more about his case.

Albino gorilla (Photo courtesy of Barcelona Zoo)
Now, researchers say they have solved mystery of the gorilla's rare pigmentation.

According to a research team at the Barcelona's Institute of Evolutionary Biology, Snowflake's albinism is a result of  inbreeding and his mother was most likely believed to be a niece who mated with her uncle.

In order to reach this conclusion, the team used genetic sequencing from the gorilla's blood samples. They found that 12.5 percent of Snowflake’s genetic make-up was very much identical making it increasingly likely that the albino gene, also known as SLC45A2, was transmitted to him by both his mother and father.

Dr. Tomas Marques Bonet, director of the research team, mentioned that in order to be albino, one organism has got to have two chromosomes with the mutation for albinism. He said that Snowflake's grandfather probably carried the recessive albino genes and two of his descendants who also carried recessive albino genes probably paired off.

The scientists added that this great discovery could also help explain the albinism in humans.

Snowflake was caught in Equatorial Guinea and was kept safe after hunters killed the rest of his family. He was then brought to the Barcelona Zoo where he stayed for 37 long years and attracted tourists and experts all over the world. He died in 2003 due to skin cancer.

noypi Wednesday, June 19, 2013
19-Foot Python Killed By Miami Man Using Knife [Photo]
An almost 19-foot python was killed by a Miami man using a knife last week, wildlife officials said Monday.

19-foot python killed (Photo by FWC)
Measuring 18 feet, 8 inches, the snake is the longest Burmese python ever captured in Florida. The previous record length for a Burmese python captured in the wild in Florida was 17 feet, 7 inches.

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), the man, identified as Jason Leon, was was riding late at night on May 11 in a rural area of southeast Miami-Dade County when he and his passenger spotted about 3 feet of the snake sticking out of the roadside brush. Leon stopped his car, grabbed the snake behind its head and started dragging it out of the brush. When the snake began to wrap itself around his leg, he called for assistance from others and then used a knife to kill the snake. Leon once owned Burmese pythons as pets and has experience handling this nonvenomous constrictor species.

The python was a 128-pound female that was not carrying eggs, according to University of Florida scientists who examined the snake.  

"Jason Leon’s nighttime sighting and capture of a Burmese python of more than 18 feet in length is a notable accomplishment that set a Florida record. The FWC is grateful to him both for safely removing such a large Burmese python and for reporting its capture," said Kristen Sommers, Exotic Species Coordination Section Leader for the FWC.

Leon reported his python capture to the FWC’s South Region office, which connected him with 888-IveGot1 (888-483-4861), the FWC’s hotline for reporting exotic species.

"With the help of people like Mr. Leon and our ongoing partnerships with other agencies, the FWC is advancing what we know about Burmese pythons in Florida," Sommers said. "This event highlights how the Exotic Species hotline allows the public to help us obtain more information about Burmese pythons, so we can improve management of this invasive species. It also reflects the cooperative efforts of the FWC and its partners to address python sightings by the public."

FWC asks the public to report sightings of exotic species to IveGot1.org or 888-IveGot1. There is also a free smartphone app: IVEGOT1.

noypi Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Amputee Killed By Dogs In South Carolina
An amputee was killed by dogs in South Carolina last week, authorities said Tuesday.

Amputee killed by dogs in SC (Photo: ABC News)
According to Coroner Chris Nesbit, Carlton Freeman, an 80-year-old bi-lateral amputee from Harleyville, was minding his own business while going down side of road in his wheelchair, at Spring Branch and Dunnings Road, when he was attacked by a pack of dogs. The dogs were reportedly pit bulls.

The coroner added that Freeman was able to report to EMS that he was pulled from his wheelchair by his legs as he tried to fight off the dogs and that they all were biting him and pulling at his clothes.

"Upon my examination of Mr. Freeman, it is a wonder that this gentleman was able to hang on as long as he did," Nesbit said in a statement. "He had bites and lacerations from his legs to the top of his head. This is very sad story, but even worse that Mr. Freeman was basically helpless to the attack, due to being a bi-lateral amputee." 
 
Three of the four dogs have been captured and brought to an animal shelter while deputies are still trying to locate the fourth.

The three dogs are reportedly owned by a woman in the neighborhood, according to a police report. Authorities are still investigating the incident and have not made any arrests.

noypi Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Two-Headed Pig Born In Chinese Village (Photo)
Two-Headed Pig (Photo courtesy of AFP, NBC News)
Following recent news on the discovery of a two-headed bull shark, Mother Nature has surprised us with yet another one of her showcase of weird creations, this time, a two-headed piglet reported to have been born in China.

It was reported that in a village in Jiujiang, east China's Jiangxi province, an AFP photographer was able to capture on camera the birth of a piglet with two heads. A photo taken last April 10, 2013 showed that this two-headed piglet has two snouts, two ears and a shared eye between its two heads.

Sadly, this unique creature may not have much time to live on this earth. A local veterinarian checked this animal out and told the AFP news agency that the pig is suffering a rare deformity which is most likely the same condition as the other recently reported two-headed species have.

This rare condition, called polycephaly or "axial bifurcation," is a result of an incomplete or interrupted splitting process of an embryo into two separate organisms. Because of this condition, more complications might cause this creature to die even before it can reach adulthood.

noypi Saturday, April 13, 2013