What do you get when you set a pile of offal and other assorted body parts in a private game reserve in South Africa? An exclusive dining area for the region's vultures (one photo depicts the menu). Keith L. Bildstein, Ph.D., the Sarkis Acopian Director of Conservation Science at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, blogs about his adventures at The Vulture Chronicles. [more inside]
"...parrots, among the oldest victims of human acquisitiveness and vainglory, have become some of the most empathic readers of our troubled minds. Their deep need to connect is drawing the most severely wounded and isolated PTSD sufferers out of themselves. In an extraordinary example of symbiosis, two entirely different outcasts of human aggression — war and entrapment — are somehow helping each other to find their way again." What Does A Parrot Know About PTSD? [NYT] [more inside]
"So you are in 13th century England and you’ve been accused of, or maybe have actually committed, a murder. To be taken into custody and tried would likely result in execution, so you need to go to ground, fast." What do you do? Run to a church and claim sanctuary! [more inside]
In 1975, the New York Blood Center (NYBC) decided to bring 100 chimpanzees to Liberia to conduct research on hepatitis and other human diseases. The research worked: we now have a vaccine for hepatitis B, and the research project ended in 2005. But NYBC left the chimps in Liberia, promising that they could retire there and be cared for until the natural end of their lives. In March 2015, NYBC abruptly ended funding for the chimp sanctuary. The chimps are slowly starving to death, dependent on the charity of unpaid caregivers for food and fresh water. NYBC says they have no legal or moral obligation to help. [more inside]
There are only five functioning Jewish synagogues with sand floors in the world, and four of them are in the Caribbean. How has the tradition been maintained for hundreds of years? [more inside]
PenguinCams!: Edinburgh Zoo (Via) / Galveston: Moody Gardens / Maryland Zoo / Montreal Biodome / San Diego Seaworld / Sedwick County Zoo: Cessna Cove / Station Gars O’Higgins (Antarctica) / Tennessee Aquarium [more inside]
Tiger at Oyster Creek? It's possible there's a tiger skulking around Brazoria County. Of course, it might be a cougar...although they're pretty scarce around here. You'd probably have a better chance of seeing a tiger in Texas than a cougar. Heck, these days there are more tigers in the state of Texas than there are in India.
Craig Grant spends 14 hours a day, seven days a week, caring for over 500 cats. They live at Caboodle Ranch, a town he built himself on a 30 acre lot with $100,000 of his own money.
We all know what 130 cats look like, but what about 700? Welcome to Cat House on the Kings, California's largest non-profit cat sanctuary.
The first 17 minute 'webisode' of the new science-fiction web-series Sanctuary, starring Stargate SG-1's Amanda Tapping (along with several other Stargate actors) can now be viewed online, for free, at Youtube. And although you can buy them here for US $1.99, uploading the video to Youtube or sharing it with your friends is all completely legit, as the producers have taken a very liberal approach to DRM; specifically, there is none. To quote creator Damian Kindler "These files are YOURS. You can do with them what you want. Drop them into iTunes. Convert them to DVD formats. Burn, rip, whatever. You bought 'em, you decide how to enjoy 'em." Nice.
An ancient theatre filters out low-frequency background noise. The ancient Greek theatre of the Asklepieion of Epidaurus, built mostly during the 4th century B.C. and now a World Heritage Site, is renowned for its extraordinary acoustics. Researchers have figured out that the arrangement of the stepped rows of seats are perfectly shaped to act as an acoustic filter, suppressing low-frequency background noise while passing on the high frequencies of performers' voices. [Via MoFi.]
"Each day, tens of thousands of our precious domain names are bought by greedy corporations and squandered for non-sustainable commercial development." But the Domain Name Preservation Society wants to help. Donate your names after you no longer need them, and they will retire protected within the sanctuary. Otherwise, what domains will our children be left with if we do not protect the endangered domain names of today?