Crufts 2010 Won By Hungarian Vizsla Called Yogi

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A Hungarian Vizsla named Yogi has won Best In Show at Crufts.The seven-year-old beat off competition from six other dogs in the culmination of the four-day show at Birmingham’s National Exhibition Centre (NEC).Yogi is the first Hungarian Vizsla to win Best in Show. Handler John Thirlwell said his “wonderful dog” from Carlisle, Cumbria, is likely to retire.

Rico, a Scottish Terrier from Russia, took second prize at Crufts, the largest dog show in the world.And Judge Valerie Foss said of the winning dog: “He is such a lovely mover, so powerful, so free.”He is just a very, very good dog.”The Kennel Club said nearly 22,000 dogs across 187 breeds were entered into this year’s Best in Show competition.

‘Wonderful diversity’Thousands had packed the arena to cheer on the finalists. Earlier, judging of the Gundog category, which Yogi won, was interrupted by a streaker.The dog showcase was broadcast on More4 this year after the BBC – which began screening Crufts in 1966 – announced it was dropping its coverage in 2008.
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India May Have Lost Siberian Cranes For Ever

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For the tenth consecutive year, the majestic Siberian Cranes – among the most endangered birds in the world – have skipped India this winter, say experts.They apprehend that the Siberian Cranes are unlikely to ever come to the Bharatpur region of Rajasthan again as they have apparently changed their centuries-old migratory route from Siberia to India.

“These birds have not been sighted in the famous Keoladeo National Park of Bharatpur or any other place in northern India. It is clear that their route has undergone a change owing to a variety of reasons,” Dilawar Mohammed, ornithologist with the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), said.The last time a pair of Siberian Cranes (Grus leucogeranus) was spotted in this park was way back in 2001.

“After that it has been a disappointment for bird lovers, ornithologists and tourists who used to go there for a glimpse of these royal birds,” Mohammed said.He explained that the Siberian Cranes’ route to India was through Afghanistan. The adult birds stand as tall as 91 inches and can weigh over 10 kg.Dodging the bombings by US fighter jets which tried to root out the erstwhile Taliban regime in October 2001 and after the 9/11 strikes in the US, the Siberian Cranes managed to reach India for the last time.
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13 Countries Agree Plan To Save Wild Tigers

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A dozen Asian nations and Russia vowed Friday to double the number of wild tigers by 2022, crack down on poaching that has devastated the big cats and prohibit the building of roads and bridges that could harm their habitats.However, the historic declaration adopted by the 13 countries that have wild tigers includes no new money to finance the conservation efforts. The agreement only includes plans to approach international institutions like the World Bank for money and to develop schemes to tap money from ecotourism, carbon financing and infrastructure projects to pay for tiger programs.

“This is a historic meeting. Before this, not many people paid attention to tigers,” Thailand’s Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Suwit Khunkitti said after the three-day meeting in Hua Hin. “Stopping the depletion of tigers is a very important issue for all of us.”
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Arabian Sand Cat Kittens!!!

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They’re living at the zoo in Cincinnati… two Arabian sand kittens, that is. These tiny cats (each weighs less than two pounds) are now on display at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. Najah (the boy) and Fath (the girl) are the second litter from mother Jala and father Naji, from Qatar’s Al Wabra Reserve.

Sand cats, aka “sand dune cats,” can be found in any arid environment between North Africa and Russia, according to a Cincinnati Zoo press release. Sand cats are a near-threatened species, and only 26 live in captivity in the United States. They are small animals with broad heads and paws covered with fur, which allow them to walk on hot sand. They are also super, duper cute. Who’s up for a field trip?

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Russia To Host Tiger Summit In 2010

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Russia will host a tiger preservation summit in Vladivostok in 2010, according to the Russian branch of World Wildlife Fund (WWF).Scientists decided to use Oriental calendar and the coming year of the Tiger to promote public awareness of the situation with Amur tigers, Igor Chestin, Director of the Russian branch of WWF said on Thursday.Chestin said that the Russian government, WWF and World Bank initiated the Tiger summit, in which the heads of 13 states are expected to participate.

Only 3200 wildlife tigers remain today, according to Vyacheslav Rozhnov, deputy director of the Ecology and Wildlife Evolution Institute.WWF estimates Russia’s Khabarovsk and Primorye regions have 500 Amur tigers at present.

The Natural Resources ministry will draft a tiger preservation program for the summit, which along with anti-poaching measures will urge for measures to stop cutting cedar forests, the natural habitat of tigers, and expand the territory of wildlife reserves.

(source)

Oscar The Dog : Hound The World In 80 Days

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A dog called Oscar is has laid claim to the title of the animal kingdom’s most intrepid explorer after visiting famous landmarks around the world. His travels include five continents, 29 countries and stopping off everywhere from the Eiffel Tower to the Taj Mahal.Oscar was rescued from a South African kennel by owner Joanne Lefson five years ago. In May the pair began an epic journey hoping to inspire millions to help save his fellow canines living as strays on the streets.

Dodging crocodile-infested rivers, walking on the Great Wall of China and escaping Italian police Oscar finally finished his tour last week.The £250,000 six-month trip – which Joanne funded by selling her home – also took in 15,000 shelter dogs and at more than 50 charity-run rescue centres.The pair capped off the tour at Brazil’s famous Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio, Brazil.

Ms Lefson, who is half British and half South African, had the idea to take the titanic trip dubbed ‘The World Woof Tour’.
She said it was a miracle Oscar was alive let alone a globe trotter.She said: “If I hadn’t gone to the kennel that fateful day Oscar had one more day left and would have been put down.”When I discovered what a wonderful dog Oscar was it broke my heart to think how many ‘Oscar’s’ are still out there and simply just don’t get that second chance.
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Wild Dogs Turn Green From 'Toxic Waste'

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A pack of wild dogs have turned bright green after eating suspected toxic waste in Russia.The strays, thought to be former guard dogs, are said to scavenge for food at a tip on the outskirts of Yekaterinburg city.

A local resident said he thought someone was playing a practical joke when he saw the hounds in the snow.”I go past those dogs every day,” Alexei Bukharovsky said.”They are usually reddish… but then I saw, running along the white snow, an almost completely emerald dog.”

A police spokesman told local news service RIA Novosti that it is thought to be the result of illegal tipping.”Either local residents or a factory have been dumping some kind of chemical waste there,” the spokesman said.

The council has been asked to clean up the site.

(source)

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