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N.C. Zoo Announces The Rare Birth of A Sand Cat Kitten

Small, fierce, and daring- words that describe the feline species known as Sand cats. 

In the wild, they are mostly found in the desert where they live off insects, small rodents and even venomous snakes. They are extremely rare due to their quiet and reserved nature, which is why there is a lot of celebration over the birth of a Sand Cat on Monday, Aug. 10. The kitten is the first of the mother Najma and father, Cosmo aged 3 and 5 respectively. 

The mother and kitten are currently in a secluded area of the N.C. Zoo and have minimal human contact. They live in the Desert habitat, which is currently closed to the public in accordance with COVID-19 restrictions.

The birth of a sand cat under human care is a rare occurrence. There are only 13 facilities affiliated with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) in possession of sand cats, and only about six of them have breeding pairs. In 2019, there were only 33 sand cats in all AZA zoos. 

They are petite in size- just like domestic cats, but there is nothing domestic about these desert cats. They are ferocious wild animals that should never be kept as pets, especially in the presence of kids so don’t let their small sizes fool you. Their big ears and relatively large eyes distinguish them from domestic cats, but they can be a lot smaller in size. For Sand Cats under human care, life expectancy is about 10-12 years. 

Sand Cats are native to the deserts of North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. They are nocturnal creatures that can adapt to the hot and cold extremes of their desert environments, primarily because of their thick fur. Their large ears help them pick up low sound frequencies, and this comes in handy when searching for prey or looking for mates. They are solitary creatures by nature, and are only found in pairs for mating purposes. The large span of the desert, however, makes it difficult for two separate Sand Cats to meet, so it takes a long time for that to ever happen. 

Sand Cats keep a low profile by being active at night, staying close to the ground, and leave zero footprints in the sand, making it difficult for humans to see or track them in the wild. All these factors make it a Herculean task to study them and get an accurate number of sand cats living in the wild. 

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Centenarian Beats Coronavirus and Prepares For 109th Birthday

Kelly Taylor

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Millions of people have been dying across the world as a result of contracting the Coronavirus.

One of the most emphasized points has been for the elderly and people with underlying health conditions to shelter-in-place or wear protective gear at all times.

It is therefore understandable why the world is celebrating the fact that a centenarian has been able to survive the brutal virus.

She is actually well on her way to a decade past the century and doing so in fine style.

Not only has she fought and won the battle, but she is taking preparatory steps to celebrate another birthday.

One hundred and nine years, she has managed to survive on this earth, two world wars, multiple Presidents, Stock market and housing market crashes, now a pandemic.

Ruth Stryzewski of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, has only three weeks to go, but plans are in high gear. If anyone has anything to celebrate, she certainly does.

Maybe if she were fifty years younger, it would not have been such a surprise that she pulled through the virus unscathed, but at her age, that’s unheard of anywhere in the world.

The pandemic has devastated the United States and has led to the loss of lives in the region of four hundred thousand.

Some survivors recover in the slated two-week period, but others take weeks and even months to recuperate.

Some have symptoms that appear to be long-term, like loss of taste and smell or even fatigue.

Some are still laid up in bed, struggling to regain their stamina, trying many home remedies to help them become rejuvenated.

Yet 108-year-old Ruth Strzyzewski of Oshkosh managed to evade all the horrible symptoms and, above all, death, which she is genuinely grateful for.

The coronavirus toll on the elderly has been disproportionate to all other ages. Even seemingly young robust people have succumbed, as well as infants.

However, this older woman was having none of it. She has decided that the virus will not be determining her fate.

For several weeks she remained isolated, putting up an intense fight against the severe virus that has brought many nations to their knees.

Fortunately, she did not need to be hospitalized, even though several symptoms presented themselves.

After her solace period, Strzyzewski has emerged with no ongoing effects and seems to be recuperating with no issues. She’s expected to make a full recovery to her usual cheerful self.

One health official highlighted the remarkable feat, noting that at her age, Strzyzewski being on the road to recovery would have been the last thing on anyone’s mind, not with so many people losing the coronavirus battle.

Not only has she fought, but she has won and is doing very well. Her strength continues to build each day, and she’s almost back to a state of normalcy.

Her birthday celebration, slated for February 20, will be a high point for 2020. Many health officials are likely wondering about the possibility of someone this old conquering the virus.

Maybe they’ll be revisiting the round table and analyze her specimens to see what is so different about a woman over a century old that made her survive the vicious virus.

Either way, as they contemplate, she will be having a whale of a time celebrating her 109th birthday on 20 February with whatever number of people will be allowed.

Be assured; it will be covered by media houses not only in the United States but globally.

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Man Dubbed a Hero After Saving a Baby Elephant With CPR

Renee Yates

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People who are trained to provide CPR to rescue others expect to be called upon in the odd moment to act. However, Srivate Mana never expected that his knowledge in how to save a life would be critical in saving a baby elephant. Yet, that is exactly what he found himself doing and was filmed in a video that went viral on the Internet shortly after. Savings a baby elephant left on the side of the road, Mana was able to bring the elephant back and it was standing again within 10 minutes.

Animals Can’t Read Road Warning Signs

Like any animal, the baby elephant was simple moving from one part of the area to another looking for food and following its herd. However, unlike the older pachyderms, the young elephant was not yet used to the roads and vehicles that cut through roaming area of Chanthaburi. It had no idea what to make of the noise or the lights the vehicles had to signal they were approaching. And curiosity ultimately ended up being the animal’s weakness. As a result, it had no idea what was hurtling towards the small animal when a motorcycle rider slammed into the creature at speed. The rider was okay, aside from scuffs and being thrown from the motorbike. Unfortunately, the baby elephant took the brunt of the impact and was laid out on the road.

Things Weren’t Looking Very Good

When Mana arrived at the scene traveling the same path as his crew, he could see his coworkers taking care of the downed rider, but nothing was happening for the elephant. In the distance he could also hear the mother and adult elephants calling for the baby creature. Instinctually, Mana knows to jump into action to save a life, and even the elephant parents calling seemed to trigger his training. Trying to guess where the elephant’s heart was, he got close to the creature on the road and started figuring out where to apply CPR. At the same time Mana was crying, feeling a wave of emotion for the junior pachyderm. Amazingly, the elephant began to move. He was in shock but for a good reason.

A Miracle on Four Legs, With a Trunk

After a few seconds of standing the baby elephant began to reorient itself and went right back to the same location where it was originally hit, probably looking for its mother. Amazingly, the baby elephant wasn’t seriously injured, just completely dazed and confused. As the young elephant started calling out for any sign of its herd, the mother and the rest of the elephants came back out of the countryside to fetch it. Mana watched the reunion and smiled.

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UPS Driver Gets Dazzling Appreciation From Appreciative Community

Jess

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From the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, most households have been reliant on UPS drivers to deliver their necessities, especially since many physical stores had closed their doors to the public. 

The drivers put themselves and their families at risk to get those essentials delivered to millions of homes across the country and make the quarantine less strenuous for families. 

One particular UPS delivery driver caught the attention of residents in Smithtown, Long Island, New York where he has been dropping packages off tirelessly both day and night.

For 25 years, Gregory Watkins Sr. has been working for UPS and he has spent the last thirteen of these years assigned to Long Island.  

Didn’t he eventually get bored? Actually, it was the opposite for Watkins, who says he liked his job and the welcoming atmosphere of the community he’s been serving for more than a decade.

Recently, in a bid to help meet the pandemic demands, Watkins took on additional shifts which did not go unnoticed by the residents. 

The residents were blown away by the father of four turning up six days every week and we’re moved to show their appreciation. 

The fact that the busy driver always wore a smile, and went above and beyond to assist the customers, was the icing on the cake. 

The residents huddled and came up with a surprise plan, which turned out to be just that, for the valuable UPS delivery driver. 

The clueless driver reacted to a text message for assistance from one of the residents, but came upon a host of people converging on the roadway and vehicles lining the sidewalks.

He was unsure of whether to drive through the crowd, but his desire to fulfill the customer’s wishes outweighed his doubt and he slowly began driving towards the crowd.

What greeted him next made the driver gasp for air as residents began emerging from their vehicles with signs and loud cheers egging him on and showing their appreciation.

The driver questioned if what was going on was really to honor him. The doubts were quickly erased as he heard his name being chanted by the excited residents.

As he continued driving down the road, he saw the many signs with positive messages showing appreciation for his remarkable service.

Meanwhile a resident captured the entire event on camera, taking comments from multiple residents who openly thanked the driver. 

The residents expressed that they know his family, which drove home the fact that they knew he was making a huge sacrifice since he has four children at home. 

The dazzled driver regained his composure and decided to emerge from the vehicle where he was greeted with a barrage of gifts. 

He explained to the grateful residents that it has been sheer enjoyment delivering to their community and being of assistance in whatever way possible. 

He said watching how everyone evolved, including kids becoming adults or obtaining their drivers license was a part of the pleasure. 

As Watkin thanked the residents and expressed what he observed over the last 13 years, he informed them that his tenure would end in two years. 

There was a unanimous groan in response to the beloved driver’s statement, but that did not put a damper on the next few minutes as they continued to show their appreciation.  

Overall, Watkins says he felt love and care exuded from the residents who even penned their thoughts. 

He has been humbled by the gesture and plans to continue serving the community of Smithstown faithfully. 

Many people do good but it doesn’t always come back the way they give it. In fact it comes back when they least expect it and that’s exactly what happened to this hardworking father of four. 

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Five Heroic High School Freshman Heed Call to Action, Save Children From Icy Pond!

Kelly Taylor

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When the worst happens in front of our eyes, we all hope that we will have the fortitude to act. For five teenagers from New Jersey, a call to action manifested before themselves while heading home from an evening at Beacon Hill Country Club. The five kids were all from a local high school and they had been sledding at the local country club in Middletown when they heard a commotion coming from a pond near the bottom of the hill. As it turned out, two children on a sled had been rocketing straight toward the ice-covered surface. What happened next could have ended in tragedy if not for a group of brave kids.

Tyler Armagan, Ryan Day, Kieran Foley, Drew Scalice, and Joseph Dietrich had been hanging out at their favorite sledding spot in town when their lives changed forever. Kieran, a 14-year-old from New Jersey, said that he saw the two children careening down the hill and toward the ice-covered pond. Kieran stated, “They just went so fast right down the hill.” 

According to Kieran, the father of the children had been yelling for his kids to jump out of the sled. The problem was that 8-year-old Olivia and 4-year-old R.J. were not in control. In the Olympics, sleds can reach speeds of up to 70mph. While little Olivia and R.J. weren’t going that fast, they were certainly not in control. True tragedy was hovering over the entire moment but the boys leaped into action.

As it turns out, Kieran and his friends were all from the same Boy Scout troop. The kids kept their cool and jumped into action immediately. Kieran and his friends formed a human chain down to the pond where the two children had fallen into the icy water. Knowing that time was of the essence, Kieran waded into the water. Kieran stated, “I knew it wasn’t that deep, the water, so I just picked them up..” 

Drew was also shocked by what happened though he was quick to act. Drew told reporters, “All I can remember is seeing the kids come down (the hill).” Drew would go on to describe how Ryan helped calm the kids down after pulling them from the water, asking them questions about Christmas and what presents that they would want. As it turns out, this was a wonderful way to calm the kids down as their parents arrived.

After pulling the children from the freezing water, Kieran and his buddies consoled them as they tried to keep them warm. Soon Richard Heid and Stephanie Irlbeck appeared, the parents quick to thank the heroic children that had stepped up to the plate to save their child. As frostbite can occur within ten minutes in the right frigid temperatures, it isn’t dramatic to say that Kieran and his friends potentially saved two lives.

While 2020 was a constant lesson in how dark and hard the world can be, there are always silver linings to turn to for hope and inspiration. While much of the world was engulfed in chaos relating to politics or COVID, good folks like Kieran and his friends continue to do great things for the people around them. Perhaps we could all learn a little bit more from these heroic kids!

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Military Officer Just Wanted To Get Home, When Man Confronted Her On Plane

Kelly Taylor

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Packed plane rides tend to be the worst because if you’re not lucky enough to get on early, you get stuck with whatever is left. And that usually means being cramped in a middle seat squished between two others. It might be livable on a short flight, but a long flight can be torture sitting like that. For Jessica’s case, it was obvious to her when boarding that her flight was going to be a miserable experience. Everything was taken, and the only seat left was a middle seat in a cramped can of a ride. However, things got weird before she could even get her bag in the storage and sit down. Instead of sitting down, a man walked up and told her she couldn’t sit in the seat she finally found. The reason why just about knocked her off her feet.

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