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Zoo to use pop music to keep giraffes calm on New Year’s Eve

THE HAGUE — Keepers at a Dutch zoo have found an unorthodox solution to calm down skittish giraffes spooked by the sound of thousands of end-of-year fireworks going off: playing them pop music. “We have tried a few things to calm the giraffes down over the years,” Amersfoort Animal Park…

Hidden cameras show 35 rare endangered rhinos in Indonesia

Hidden cameras in the jungles of Indonesia’s Java island have captured images of 35 critically endangered Javan rhinos, including five calves, an official said Friday. The forestry ministry set up 44 infrared cameras from January to October this year in the rugged Ujung Kulon National Park on the western-most tip…

Hundreds of ‘Spice’ variants surface after DEA ban

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has a problem on its hands: How do you ban something when prohibition just creates hundreds of derivative products? That’s precisely the situation the agency is confronting with synthetic marijuana blends most commonly known as “Spice,” which they issued an emergency ban on in late…

Butterball turkey facility raided for abuse of birds

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina (Reuters) – Authorities searched a Butterball turkey farm in North Carolina on Thursday after an animal protection group alleged that birds there were being neglected and abused, police said. The search came after the nonprofit Mercy For Animals provided law enforcement with secretly recorded video footage that…

Stem cell research on donor eggs often not disclosed

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – Many U.S. fertility clinics don’t tell egg donors that embryos made from their eggs may end up being used in stem cell research, according to a new government survey. That’s despite widespread opposition to such research, which is considered morally offensive by a third of…

2011 a ‘horrible year for elephants’

The past 12 months have seen a record number of large ivory seizures across the world, a leading wildlife watchdog said Thursday, saying it had been a “horrible year for elephants”. TRAFFIC, which runs the ETIS database of illegal ivory trades, said there had been at least 13 large-scale seizures…

Twin NASA probes approach lunar orbit

Twin NASA spacecraft are set to blast into lunar orbit at the weekend on a mission to study the subterranean structure of the Moon in order to better understand the origins of planets. The first Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL-A) will begin orbiting the Moon at 2121 GMT on…

Red meat lovers have more kidney cancer

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – People who eat lots of red meat may have a higher risk of some types of kidney cancer, suggests a large U.S. study. Researchers found that middle-aged adults who ate the most red meat were 19 percent more likely to be diagnosed with kidney cancer…

Elderly who eat better stay mentally sharp: study

WASHINGTON — Elderly people with higher levels of certain vitamins and omega 3 fatty acids in their blood score better on mental acuity tests than those who eat junk food, a study released Wednesday showed. The study published in Neurology, the journal of the American Academy of Neurology, also showed…

French breast implant tycoon hits back as scandal grows

Holed up at his home in the south of France, the founder of troubled breast implant manufacturer PIP is fighting back against a growing international scandal over his allegedly faulty products. Between 300,000 and 400,000 women in 65 countries from Europe to Latin America have implants made with sub-standard silicone gel by…

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