We bring you the latest from around the World in wildlife and conservation news.
Last year Washington D.C.’s Smithsonian National Zoo had to say goodbye to Bei Bei the panda who was returned to China. He was flown by private FedEx plane non-stop to Chengdu. Millions of people in the US and around the world have watched Bei Bei mature into an adult either by visiting the National Zoo or online thanks to the panda cam. Bei Bei was born in 2015 and that year the then First Lady of the US Michelle Obama and her Chinese counterpart Peng Liyuan named him.
Early in 2019 52 polar bears converged up a small military settlement in Russia’s Novaya Zemlya archipelago forcing the town of Belushya Guba to declare a state of emergency. The dramatic polar bear invasion was an illustration of a widespread problem. When polar bear territory and waste intersect the bears are likely to be found muzzle deep in rubbish. That is a real threat to the safety of humans and a diet of trash is not exactly good news for the bears either.
At the end of last year, a third lion pride was brutally butchered in South Africa making it the third pride in a month. The evil poachers hacked of their heads and paws to be used for making black magic potions. The owner of the pride said his male lion and four of his lionesses were poisoned chicken carcasses resulting in an agonising deaths. The Sunward Ranch where the lion pride lives provides lion experiences for under-privileged children.
New research shows that dolphins are similar to humans in that their right-hand side tends to dominate. In humans approximately 90 per cent of people are right-handed. Gorillas also tend to be right-handed whilst kangaroos favour their left and cats also favour particular sides depending on their gender. Researchers have now shown that bottlenose dolphins tend to display an even stronger preference for their right side than humans.
A gay male penguin couple residing at a Dutch Zoo stole an egg from a heterosexual penguin pair according to a spokesperson for the zoo. The gay male penguin call the DierenPark Amersfoort zoo in the Netherlands their home. Keepers at the zoo found the pair incubating the stolen egg and the spokesperson added there is another gay couple amongst the breeding couple.
An orangutan aged 33-years old and conferred the legal status of personhood by an Argentinian court has left the country and moved to a new residence in central Florida where she is now settling in. A spokesperson for the Center for Great Apes in Wauchula said Sandra the orangutan is a sweet an inquisitive being and has adjusted to her new surroundings.
Timur the Russian goat that achieved global fame thanks to his unusual friendship with a tiger has died according to the director of the safari park where the two resided. Dmitry Mezenstev said Timur’s heart stopped working. The goat which is believed to be approximately five years old was cremated and buried with full honours his keeper said in a statement.
Diane Fossey the subject of the film “Gorillas in the Mist” who passed away in 1985 would probably be surprised there are any mountain gorillas left in the wild. Before she died, she grew increasingly alarmed by rising rates of poaching and deforestation in their habitat in Central Africa. Ms Fossey predicted before her death that by the turn of the millennium the species would disappear. Instead there has been intense conservation which has provided the species of great ape with whom humans share 98 per cent of DNA a second chance.