Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hanging around

Baby penguin brushes off a tumble

Volume warning.
YouTube link.

Little piglet prances through the grass

YouTube link. Original Vine.

Murder charge after inmate overdosed from eating pieces of cell mate's underpants

A jail inmate is dead and police say he died by swallowing drug-soaked underpants. Corey McQueary, 33, died at Jessamine County Jail on August 21. According to Kentucky State Police, another inmate, 55-year-old Michael Jones, soaked a pair of his underpants in liquid methadone while he was out on temporary leave.

He allegedly wore them back to the jail where he's accused of tearing them up and sharing the pieces with his cell mates, including McQueary. After ingesting the piece of drug-laced underwear, McQueary complained to the jail staff that he felt ill, but did not tell them he'd eaten the underpants.

He was checked out by a doctor, and was found dead early the next morning. Jailers said the methadone-soaked underwear is something that would be nearly impossible to catch. "Contraband is a constant problem at any facility across the state.

 YouTube link. Original news video.
"You can do everything that you can do, you know strip searches, not allowed to bring anything such as books or any other paraphernalia into the facility," said Jon Sallee, Jessamine County Jailer. Jones has now been charged with McQueary's murder.

Neighbourhood cat has been terrorising people and pets

A Houston man says a neighbourhood cat attacked him on Monday morning as he was walking his dogs at about 8:30am. “The cat jumped off the fence and ran towards the dogs and myself,” said David, a resident of Houston Heights who did not want to give his last name.

“I tried to get in the way to try and protect the dogs and the cat latched on to my leg and scratched.” David was left with several inches-long scratch marks and two small dots. “It looks like a bite mark to me,” he said. David said he did not provoke the cat which came from a house in the Heights.

Keri Smith said she and her dog had a run in with a cat from that very same house last summer. “We were walking across the street and we saw this cat and it just launched off the porch and came running at us,” Smith said. “He probably chased us about a half a block,” she said. The cat’s owner said the cat has been known to run after dogs but had never harmed a person.

YouTube link.
The owner said the cat has a current rabies vaccine, but could not provide proof. David’s wife said she sent an email to the City of Houston’s animal control department. She said she hadn't receive any reply . The city says gives animal attack calls high priority and will investigate all reports as soon as possible, usually within the same day It is unclear if the city received the email or where the city may be in investigating this incident.

Firefighters rescued puppy with head stuck in wheel

Firefighters in Houston, Texas, came to the aid of a young puppy with it's head stuck in a wheel, which a a frantic good Samaritan who'd dropped off had found next to the dumpster at her apartment complex.

It would take firefighters more than an hour to free the frightened dog. The rescue operation was no easy feat. "We tried to put soap on the side of its head, wet its head slide it out. It wouldn't come out.", said Senior Capt. Gregory Leonard.

So they dug into their arsenal of rescue tools instead. Firefighters tried to keep the puppy, a black lab mix which they named Lugnut, calm while they carefully went to work. "We really cut very carefully because any kind of pressure on the dog's neck could have snapped its neck or killed it," Leonard said.

YouTube link.
They tried using a saw but the sound the vibrations frightened her. In the end, it was the Jaws of Life that did the trick. "We all love pets and we didn't want the dog to get hurt at all," Leonard said.

Angry resident dropped off dead koala at council offices

A resident has sent Redland City Council in Queensland, Australia, a gruesome message after dropping off a dead koala to its offices. Thornlands resident Darren Mewett warned council it was in danger of losing its reputation as a koala safe haven, after scraping up the dead animal from where he had found two other dead koalas in the past year.

Mr Mewett blamed the animal's death on the council for failing to put in place permanent measures to save wildlife on the 80km/h rat run. He said he took the bloodied carcass of the mature male koala in to council on Tuesday to highlight the lack of adequate action, which he said was the result of lobbying from nearby residents wanting to sub-divide land in the area.

"This time, I decided to take the koala in to council because no action was taken the last time I reported a dead koala and my comments were not taken seriously," Mr Mewett said "This council operates under a fallacy, spruiking there are koalas here and they are protected but it is all just talk."

Council said it put two temporary flashing signs for two months from June 2013 warning drivers to slow down to avoid hitting animals and koalas near Eprapah Creek, where the koala was killed. It also put two temporary flashing signs nearby but said all had to be removed after they were all damaged by motorists. A permanent sign advising motorists of wildlife in the area was also erected. Council said it would investigate what could be done to make the road safer for wildlife after Mr Mewett's most recent complaint.

Loyal dog spent almost two weeks without food lying by his master's grave waiting for his return

A dog in Chennai, India, stayed almost for a fortnight next to the grave of his 18-year-old master, who had adopted him, waiting for his miraculous return after he had been killed in a road accident. The brown mongrel went without food, braved sun and rain, but refused to move in an extraordinary display of loyalty. Blue Cross of India volunteers spotted the dog sitting near the grave in the open burial ground near Avadi Bridge, Blue Cross of India general manager Dawn Williams said.

"When we attempted to rescue the dog, it stubbornly resisted and refused to budge," Williams said. "It just scratched the grave and whined." The volunteers then spoke to people who lived nearby. "We met a local resident who said the dog belonged to Bhaskar. He died after being hit by a speeding vehicle on August 2. Bhaskar's mother, Sundhari, 50, is a construction worker who lived in a shed near the building site," Williams said.

When the team went to Sundhari's house she said the dog, Tommy, had been her son's pet for five years. After his death, the animal had disappeared. She accompanied the team to the grave. The emaciated dog staggered towards Sundhari and crouched near her feet. "Sundhari clasped the dog, held its neck to her face and cried," Blue Cross volunteer Mukund J said. Sundhari, a widow, said life had become meaningless after the death of her only son.

But the pet that had remained steadfast to her son, even after his death, could be a reason to live, she said. "She took Tommy with her and returned home," Mukund said. Residents said she had gone back to her native home in Tiruvannamalai and had taken the dog with her. "Dogs, like humans, can love, suffer, and grieve," Peta India CEO Poorva Joshipura said. "We hope everyone who is moved by the story of this faithful companion will care for dogs by adopting a stray or volunteering at an animal shelter."

Eccentric bus shelter closed for health and safety reasons

An eccentric bus stop created by Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto in Krumbach, Austria, has been closed to the public because it doesn't "follow the Austrian regulations for building safety".

Bränden bus stop, one of seven architect-designed shelters in the tiny Vorarlberg village, is made of a cluster of slender steel rods that support a winding wooden staircase and balcony. But a small chain barrier now blocks access to the stairs, with a sign that reads "This is a work of art. Do not enter."

Sou Fujimoto designed the structure as part of the Kultur Krumbach initiative. Curated by Dietmar Steiner, director of Vienna architecture museum Architekturzentrum Wien, the project was developed to promote tourism in the picturesque Bregenzerwald district. According to Steiner, the new safety warning is just a precaution and can be ignored. "It's about the liability for possible accidents.

"The village cannot take over the responsibility for this because the construction - the stairs and the railings - do not follow the Austrian regulations for building safety," he said. He added that people have continued to climb up the stairs, ignoring the sign, and that the construction is stable enough that this is safe. "That's also a typical Austrian tradition - we have rules and regulations, but we don’t always follow them," he added.

Crocheted blanket saved after removal of wasps' nest from bed

A giant wasps' nest took over the bed of a spare bedroom at a house in Winchester, Hampshire. Mr Birkett, of Owslebury-based Longwood Services, who was called to deal with it said: “In 45 years I have never seen anything like it. There must have been 5,000 wasps.”

The client lives alone in the five-bedroom house in St Cross and had not been in the spare room for several months before her son opened the door and saw the huge nest. The window had been left open. The wasps were enlarging their home by chewing through the pillows and into the mattress.

The nest measured about three feet wide by a foot and a half deep. Mr Birkett said: “It was a job to deal with it. I had protective gear on. At one stage there must have been 2,000 wasps buzzing around me. If someone had gone in to the room and not known what it was it would have been pretty serious.”

Mr Birkett used a spray to kill the insects on Sunday. It gives him mixed feelings. “It is amazing how they build it, by chewing the wood off gates and things. Although they are a pest in homes they are a friend of the gardener by killing aphids. I thought 'what a shame', but I had a job to do and the client was terrified.” Mr Birkett was able to save the crocheted blanket under the nest.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The month between August and October

News report.

Dog and parrot battle over yogurt pot

YouTube link.

Brave man saves skunk with head stuck in cup

YouTube link.

Wiggly white lines left drivers confused

Crooked and curving lines on a major road in Fairfax County, Virginia, caused confusion for drivers on Sunday and Monday.

The problem occurred on Interstate 66 between Centreville and Gainesville. Drivers who experienced the wiggly lines described the traffic as "horrific" and said they took alternate roads to avoid accidents

YouTube link. News video update.

The Virginia Department of Transportation said temporary lane striping that crews put down peeled up and moved, and they were working to fix the problem.

The agency also said it was looking into what caused the striping to come unstuck.

Thieves took a nap and a couple of bear heads

A family cabin in northern Franklin County, Maine, is short of two taxidermy bear heads, two lawn chairs and three flashlights following an apparent break in over the summer.

The North Waterboro family reported on Friday that someone had apparently broken in and left the back door unlocked between their last visit in April and return in August, said Franklin County Sheriff Scott Nichols.

Nichols said the key to the off-the-grid cabin had been kept in the same location for decades and seems to have been used to open the front door because there was no sign of forced entry.

The futons in the cabin appeared to have been slept in, said Nichols. There were two stuffed bear heads that had been in the family for 40 years that were reported stolen. Nichols said it was not known whether the thieves were people familiar with the family or strangers.

Two men arrested after pulling down their pants and yelling obscenities at one another

Police in Struthers, Ohio, arrested two men on Saturday evening after witnesses said they pulled down their pants and yelled obscenities at one another in a woman’s front yard. Police arrested William Anderson, 54, and Michael Susak, 34, charging Anderson with disorderly conduct, public indecency and resisting arrest.

Susak received charges of criminal damaging and public indecency. Police received numerous calls regarding a large fight in the rear yard in Struthers on Saturday evening. One witness said that the argument started when Anderson knocked on a woman’s door, telling her to stop letting her dog urinate in his yard.

Anderson then exposed himself from the waist down, according to witnesses, and yelled obscenities to a number of people who had gathered near the house. When Susak arrived, Anderson began yelling at him with his pants down. Susak then lowered his pants and started yelling back at Anderson.

Witnesses then separated the two, and Susak ran over to Anderson’s porch, ripped an aluminum downspout off the house and threw it in the yard before fleeing the scene of the incident. Officers arrested Anderson on his front porch after he gripped a chair he was sitting in to resist arrest. Susak arrived back at the scene as officers were leaving, and police arrested him as well. Authorities released Susak after he posted $200 bond. Anderson (pictured above) is still in the Mahoning County Jail.

Sheep found wandering in Tasmania could be the world's woolliest

Two Australian farmers have found what they hope to prove is the world's woolliest sheep. Peter Hazell said he had no trouble capturing the animal, which was wandering with its vision obscured by wool in scrubland on his property in Tasmania's Midlands on Sunday. "He couldn't see very well because of the wool over his face, so I snuck up behind him and grabbed him," he said.

"Then Netty and I went and got the ute and put him in the back and brought him into the yard." The six-year-old merino ram was immediately dubbed Shaun the Sheep. Netty Hazell said the sheep's avoidance of the shearing shed had been weighing it down, with Shaun carrying an estimated 20 kilograms of fleece. "It is the heaviest sheep I've ever lifted," she professed. "I just couldn't believe it, I just could not believe a sheep could have so much wool."

Shaun's tag suggested he was from a farm on Tasmania's east coast, meaning he had spent the past six years wandering across the state. Mr Hazell said it was amazing the sheep survived for so long in the wild. "Because usually they get cast and can't get up, or they get fly-struck or the hot weather gets to them," he said. The world record for fleece-yield is held by a New Zealand sheep named Shrek.

YouTube link.

The Hazells plan to take the clippers to Shaun in the next few days and see if he can take the title. But despite the wool's length Ray Peters, who is a sheep judge, said it had held up surprisingly well. "I thought it would be almost impossible for a sheep to go that long and have such good wool on him," he said. Mrs Hazell said she would enter the fleece in country shows. "There's three or four good jumpers in there," she said. And although matted, "it's surprisingly good-quality wool", Mr Hazell added.

Elk freed after wandering into office building

A young bull elk spent five hours in an office building in Dresden, Germany, on Monday, breaking through a glass door to ending up in the canteen.

The elk, which had been spotted several times in the area during the weekend, had been grazing nearby when he was startled by a group of onlookers and police and fled. “This was a sign of panic,” said a spokesman for forest management company Sachsenforst. “He didn't know where to go any more.” After five hours in the office block the animal was anesthetized, loaded into a container and taken away on Monday afternoon.

He was released in eastern Saxony. Trapped between the glass panes of the building and an interior wall, the unusual sight had drawn crowds to the building, although the grounds around it were blocked off by police. Others watched from the upper floors of the office block. Young elks occasionally wander from Poland along old animal tracks towards Dresden, with the last one being spotted several years ago.

YouTube link.

They are driven to leave their homes when the older generation have new children and reorganize their family groups. Sightings have increased across Germany since the fall of the Iron Curtain, particularly in Brandenburg, Saxony and Bavaria. Experts believe that more than ten elk live permanently in Germany and hope that the species will re-establish itself in the country's forests.

Bull rescued after getting stuck in phone box

A bull became trapped in a phone box during a bull run in Spain. The steer, taking part in a traditional stampede through the streets of Santacara, a town in northern Spain, ran straight into the call box where it became trapped by its long horns.

"It gradually demolished the phone box and pulled it to the ground but it is still caught up in the frame. As it struggled to get out it got angrier and angrier," said one spectator. "Most people were fleeing the scene and trying to scramble to safety."

YouTube link. Alternative video filmed from different angle.

However, some brave spectators then grabbed the bull by its tail and help pull the by now furious beast from the box. Officials say the bull completed the run and was treated for cuts caused by the broken glass.

"He was not seriously injured and finished the run where he received veterinary treatment," said a spokesman. "Nobody else was injured in the incident. It was great people helped free the bull but I would warn against people getting too close to the bulls as they are very aggressive and injure scores of people every year."

Traffic disrupted by errant plastic ducks

Traffic on the A4042 at Llanellen, near Abergavenny, Wales, had to slow down to avoid around a hundred rubber ducks at 10:10am on Monday after the boat trailer which was carrying them opened.

The ducks were on their way to the Monmouthshire, Brecon and Abergavenny Canal Trust' annual duck race in Llangynidr when they fell across the road. Tony Pugh, 69, a volunteer for the Monmouthshire, Brecon and Abergavenny Canal Trust, who was transporting the ducks, said: "The ducks were in the boat trailer attached to the Land Rover.

"The back somehow got open and 100 of them scattered half a mile down the road. I had to collect them in the pouring rain as they needed to be released for the duck race in Llangynidr for 2pm that day. Two police officers came to help - to be fair they didn't laugh. I can laugh now but earlier I had to run down the road kicking the ducks to the side and then collecting them.”

"It took about an hour to clear all the ducks, a few went over the fence into the field. A car pulled up and a child nicked a few so we've lost some ducks." A Gwent Police Spokesman said: "There were 100 ducks on the carriageway. Highways have been made aware and the ducks were cleared at 10.40am. There was minor disruption with traffic slowing down."