Crikey Steveirwini! Snail Honour For Late Aussie Star

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An Australian scientist has paid an unusual tribute to late conservation star Steve Irwin by naming a rare species of snail “crikey steveirwini”.Queensland Museum scientist John Stanisic said khaki colours on the stripy tree snail reminded him of the trademark shirt and shorts worn by Irwin, who died in a freak stingray incident in 2006.

“This is an extremely rare species of snail,” Stanisic said Friday, describing it as “a colourful snail, with swirling bands of creamy yellow, orange-brown and chocolate giving the shell an overall khaki appearance”.

“It was the khaki colour that immediately drew the connection to the late Crocodile Hunter,” he said.Stanisic said crikey steveirwini’s name and precarious habitat would also draw attention to the effects of climate change.”So far it has only been found in three locations, all on the summits of high mountains in far north Queensland and at altitudes above 1,000 metres (3,280 feet), which is quite unusual for Australian land snails,” he said.

“These mountainous habitats will be among the first to feel the effects of climate change and Steve Irwin’s tree snail could become a focal species for monitoring this change.”‘Crocodile Hunter’ Irwin, known for his “Crikey!” catchphrase, has already had a wildlife reserve, a road, a turtle and an anti-whaling ship named after him.Meanwhile Sunday (November 15) has been nominated as “Steve Irwin Day” by Australia Zoo in Queensland, which he built with his father, Bob.

(source)

Dozens Of Budgies Drop Dead During Country Show

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The birds were among hundreds lined up in their cages ready to be judged Gwynedd Budgerigar Society Open Show in North Wales when disaster struck.

One toppled off his perch then others began “dropping like dominoes”, according to the organisers. Owners fearing a gas leak – canaries have highly sensitive respiratory systems and were once used down mines to detect leaks – grabbed their cages and ran for the door.Some of the birds, which are worth around £1,000 each – were revived outside but in total 38 died.

“After five or ten minutes as many as 12 had died. I lost one bird myself,” organiser Rob Hughes said.”We saved the majority but what happened was utterly horrible. It was a freak event. We may never know the exact cause.”Retired pet shop boss Dave Cottrell, 55, lost ten birds at the event, at the end of last month.”They were dying by the second,” he said. “The odd thing is, I have asthma but I was unaware of anything.”

Plumbers and gas board officials who were called in found no trace of a leak, and inspections by the fire brigade and environmental health officers also proved inconclusive.An autopsy on two casualties revealed they died from congestion and haemorrhaging of the lungs.

The organisers believe a boiler flue may have become temporarily blocked by leaves, causing it to emit noxious fumes.

(source)

Gov't Says Brown Pelicans Are Endangered No Longer

Brown Pelicans back

Much like its death-defying dives for fish, the brown pelican has resurfaced after plummeting to the brink of extinction.Interior Department officials on Wednesday announced that they were taking the bird off the endangered species list, after a nearly four-decade struggle to keep the brown pelican population afloat.

The bird now prevalent across Florida, the Gulf and Pacific coasts and the Caribbean was declared an endangered species in 1970, after its population — much like those of the bald eagle and peregrine falcon — was decimated by the use of the pesticide DDT. The chemical, consumed when the pelican ate tainted fish, caused it to lay eggs with shells so thin they broke during incubation.

The pelican’s recovery is largely due to a 1972 ban on DDT, coupled with efforts by states and conservation groups to protect its nesting sites and monitor its population, Interior Department officials said.
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Gov't Says Brown Pelicans Are Endangered No Longer

Brown Pelicans back

Much like its death-defying dives for fish, the brown pelican has resurfaced after plummeting to the brink of extinction.Interior Department officials on Wednesday announced that they were taking the bird off the endangered species list, after a nearly four-decade struggle to keep the brown pelican population afloat.

The bird now prevalent across Florida, the Gulf and Pacific coasts and the Caribbean was declared an endangered species in 1970, after its population — much like those of the bald eagle and peregrine falcon — was decimated by the use of the pesticide DDT. The chemical, consumed when the pelican ate tainted fish, caused it to lay eggs with shells so thin they broke during incubation.

The pelican’s recovery is largely due to a 1972 ban on DDT, coupled with efforts by states and conservation groups to protect its nesting sites and monitor its population, Interior Department officials said.
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FIR Filed Against Elephant In Kerala

In what could be the first such incident in Kerala’s police history, an FIR has been lodged against an elephant which trampled to
death a person in this district.

Police said Rangammal, a resident of Vadakkavalur on the outskirts of the city, lodged a complaint on November 1 that her husband Krishnappan was trampled to death by the elephant some time ago.

Based on the complaint, the FIR was filed, they said.


(source)

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