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Tue, 22 May 2018
The World for People who Think


Black Cat

Leopard snatches, eats three-year-old boy at a safari lodge in Uganda

The hunt is on with the intention of capturing the leopard and removing it from the wild,’ said a spokesman
© Getty
The hunt is on with the intention of capturing the leopard and removing it from the wild,’ said a spokesman
'Once it has tasted human flesh the temptations are high to eat another human being,' says the Uganda Wildlife Authority

A leopard snatched and ate the three-year-old son of a ranger at a popular national park in Uganda.

The animal attacked the toddler - named in local reports as Elisha Nabugyere - at a safari lodge near the shore of Lake Edward on Friday night.

Ugandan authorities recovered the child's skull the following day.

The leopard is now being hunted down before it kills again.

Comment: Just last month in Africa there was another bold, atypical attack on a human: Horror as leopard severely mauls tourist dragging him from camper van by his head in Namibia


"Living fossil" sensationally washes up on beach in New Jersey

Thanks to a brief stop-over in the onshore sand dunes, a woman was fortunate to discover a "living fossil."
© AP Photo / Nicolae Dumitrache
Stephanie Hall discovered the body of a bizarre-looking lizard-like creature in Island Beach State Park, New Jersey on May 4, The Daily Star reported. However odd it may seem at first sight, the lady though it was cool enough to take a number of pictures to be later posted on her hometown webpage.

"And here we are now," Ms Hall concluded. She said local fishermen reacted to the pictures straight away, assuming the sea animal might be a sturgeon, a species that reportedly lived throughout the Triassic period, roughly 245 million years ago.


Critics fear Yale scientist's breakthrough in brain reanimation

Brain Animation
© Pixabay Composite
What do you want to happen to your brain when you die? A lot of people choose to donate their organs to science - but after learning what a scientist at Yale might do with those brains, those donors may just change their minds.

According to reports, Yale School of Medicine neuroscientist Dr. Nenad Sestan and his team successfully reanimated the brains of hundreds of dead pigs and kept them alive for up to 36 hours. Sestan's system for keeping the brains alive - called BrainEx - uses a network of tubes and reservoirs to circulate fluid and oxygen to key areas.

There was no (recorded) evidence that the brains used in the study regained consciousness but, at a meeting at the National Institutes of Health to discuss ethical concerns, Sestan did say that billions of healthy cells capable of normal activity were "unexpectedly" found in the disembodied brains.


Millions of jellyfish wash up on various shores of Malta

© Alan Deidun
Large numbers of jellyfish were spotted today in seashores to the East of Malta, including Marsaskala, Xgħajra, Imsida and Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq.

Photos show a great amount of jellyfish, of the Pelagia Noctiluca species, at San Tumas bay in Marsaskala. Jellyfish was even spotted on the quay.

Maritime biologist, Prof. Alan Deidun, said that there are millions of jellyfish in seashores to the East of Malta and described the scene as a violet carpet.

He stated that this jellyfish most probably arrived earlier than usual and in larger quantities due to the drought and hot period we had in January.


Stray dogs kill 9-year-old boy in Sitapur, India - 12 such deaths for the district since November 2017

canine attack
© Angela Antunes / CC by 2.0
The Sitapur district administration blamed the incidents on closure of illegal abattoirs, which provided leftover meat to stray dogs. Including this, the number of deaths due to canine attacks has reached 12 since November last year.

The nightmare continues for UP's Sitapur district residents as the menace of feral stray dogs continues to hound people and their kids. On Saturday, a nine-year-old boy was attacked and killed by hounds in Talgaon area when he went out to graze goats in a field.

Speaking about the incident, SHO Yogesh Shah said, "Talgaon is almost 20 kilometres away from Khairabad and this is the first such incident in the area. We have been instructed by to patrol the area in the morning." This was confirmed by IG (Lucknow range) Sujeet Pandey.

However, the Sitapur district administration blamed the incidents on closure of illegal abattoirs, which provided leftover meat to stray dogs. Including this, the number of deaths due to canine attacks has reached 12 since November last year.

Comment: See also this recent report from the same region of the world: Raging pack of stray dogs maul 3 children to death on the same day in Uttar Pradesh, India - 14 such deaths in the state since January


Pack of 4 pit bull terriers attack 2 people, one critically injured in Oklahoma City

One person is in critical condition and another is injured after being attacked by several pit bulls Saturday night.

Police say two people were walking near NE 29th street and Lindsay Ave when the dogs started charging towards them.

When the authorities arrived they found 4 pit bulls attacking a male and female victims.


Infant dies following mauling by dogs in Sherman Oaks, California

canine attack
© Angela Antunes / CC by 2.0
An infant was dead after she was attacked by multiple dogs in a Sherman Oaks home on Saturday, according to Los Angeles Police Capt. Lillian Carranza.

The incident occurred in the 14400 block of Benefit Street on Saturday afternoon, Carranza said in a tweet.

The 3-month-old child was taken to a hospital in critical condition and later pronounced dead.

Carranza indicated the girl was in her own home when she was attacked.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning bolt kills shepherd and over 200 sheep, goats in Pakistan

File photo
A lightning strike Friday killed a shepherd and more than 200 sheep and goats at the "Mosa Ka Mussala hilltop".

According to police, 45-year old shepherded Aleem s/o Kar Khan resident of Meethal village was grazing his flock of 200 sheep and goats in Malian when a lightning strike killed him and over 200 cattle on the spot.

Police said that the lightning strike caused fire that killed the sheep. After the incident locals reached on the spot and recovered the dead body of Aleem Khan and later buried in his native town.

Comment: Elsewhere recently lightning strikes have killed in Tirupati, ( 3 by a single bolt) while 2 children were fatally hit in Hyderabad (both incidents in India) and 2 succumbed in Nepal. Back in Pakistan 5 have died in 3 districts.


Crocodile placed in an MRI scanner to understand its brain

© Pixabay
"Scientists put a crocodile into an MRI machine with classical music" may sound like somebody playing a game of science Mad Libs, but it's now officially a real experiment that real scientists have run.

And it's for a fairly interesting reason, too. Scientists always want to better understand our brains, which have evolved continuously over the ages as we branched out of past species and developed on our own. But to understand how our brains evolve, we'd need to look at an ancient brain, which isn't possible.

But in the rare case where this is a good thing, crocodiles are old apex predators who haven't needed to evolve much over millions of years, and their brains have seen minimal changes compared to other animals like birds and mammals. They share enough minor similarities with modern mammal and bird brains that researchers led by Felix Ströckens at Ruhr University Bochum, Germany, decided a functional look at crocodile brains is worth the effort.

So that's how Ströckens and his team ended up sticking a Nile crocodile into an fMRI machine (short for "functional magnetic resonance imaging"), the first time the device has been used on cold-blooded animals. This was not easy, for obvious reasons that involve manhandling a croc and less obvious reasons that involve keeping their body temperatures stable inside the machine.


Attack by pack of stray dogs on student filmed at Chinese university

Stray dog attack caught on camera

Stray dog attack caught on camera
A Chinese university says it has hired professional handlers to round up stray dogs on its campus and give them to animal welfare groups after two students were attacked in separate incidents this week.

Xiangtan University, in central Hunan province, will also step up security patrols on campus to tackle the problem but stressed it would not cull the dogs, The Beijing News reported on Thursday.

The university had to abandon a controversial plan to cull stray dogs last year after animal rights activists campaigned against it, according to the report.

The latest action was prompted by two attacks, one of them caught on security footage and posted on Weibo, China's Twitter, where it has been watched more than two million times.

The video shows a female student walking alone along a path on Tuesday around 9pm when a pack of six dogs suddenly appear from nearby bushes and run towards her.