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The Gorgeous Azure-Blue Colored Tanager

Amongst the spectrum of bright-colored birds, the tanager with its subtle azure- blue color, stands out as a uniquely beautiful bird. The beauty of the azure-blue is that it can transform into different shades of blue in different light settings. It can look purple-grey in certain dark conditions and light blue in bright sunlight. The azure blue is naturally a calm and peaceful color to look at. It would be an ideal color for nursery or powder. Nature has chosen the tanager to showcase its magnificent Azure blue color. Other species of tanager have lighter blue colors.  The tanager bird has not received the attention it deserves and therefore little effort has gone into the conservation of this beautiful bird. With increasing in urban development, the natural habitat of the azure-blue tanager has been compromised. There needs to be a conscious effort to promote the tanager so it can receive the level of attention and care it deserves.

The azure-blue tanager belongs to the Thraupidae family and is mostly found in the eastern part of Brazil. They live in tropical or subtropical moist forests. With its shy personality and the dwindling population numbers, the azure blue tanager has become a difficult bird to spot. Many photography and nature enthusiasts spend weeks in search of a glimpse of the mesmerizing azure blue tanager, but few can locate one. The region of Brazil where it is mostly found are not easily accessible due to poor infrastructure. However, as humans have invaded their habitat space, the azure blue tanager has been forced to relocate to regions not ideally suited to their needs. Although they can fly long distances, their instinct near a single location. The singing abilities of azure-blue tanager are excellent. The males often sing to attract females. The typical call from a male tanager is a low-pitched sound.  

About 90% of the azure blue tanagers live in Brazil or the Andes. The eastern parts of Brazil are home to several other species of animals, however, this region has been marked for several residential and industrial projects. The economy of Brazil has not reached the heights it once promised. That has forced the government and private companies for alternate ways to grow the economy. Historically, one of the major industries has been agriculture but as Brazil looks at new ways to grow the economy, industrial manufacturing has been increasing. There has been limited space in already populated regions of the country. That has led to the expansion into the North and East of Brazil.  It is not just the tanagers that are going to suffer from the expansion into the eastern Brazilian territory. The Amazon rainforest has around 40,000 plant species, 1300 types of birds, 2.5 million types of insects, and over 3000 types of fish.  

The azure-blue tanager is an omnivorous species of bird, so they eat the food of both plant and animal origin. They have been seen eating fruits, nectar from flowers and insects. For their young ones, they often bring larger insects but their daily diet consists of plant-based food. Nature conservationists in South America have included the azure blue tanager in their books and documentaries to get some attention to the decreasing population of the azure blue tanager. They were also part of the Birds of South America books. However, there needs to be a higher level of awareness for this beautiful bird for the species to survive. It is our responsibility to ensure our children will be able to see such marvelous creatures when they grow up. For that, conservation actions need to be taken now.

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Priests On Tiki Bar Rescue Drowning Man

Kelly Taylor

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It was supposed to be a normal, wavy afternoon as Jimmy MacDonald from Albany rode the waves on Lake George in his kayak- little did he know. 

According to him, he lost focus and drifted away from his wife and step-kids because he was taking pictures with his new mobile phone. By the time he realized what was happening, it was too late- the water got choppier, he lost control of his kayak and tipped over into the water. 

Jimmy was in a lot of trouble and to make it worse, his life jacket was coming up over his head- he hadn’t secured it properly. Within a few seconds, he found himself holding on to the kayak with one hand and his new $1,400 smartphone, the origin of the problem, with the other. 

According to him, he spotted other kayakers and canoeists passing by, but he was too proud to yell for help. After futile efforts to get back on his kayak, he decided to accept his fate, and resorted to asking God for help. 

“That’s when I said, ‘Alright, I think I might die today. I think this might be it.’ I prayed to my lord and savior Jesus Christ for help,” Jimmy said.

Luckily for him, Greg Barrett captain for Tiki Tours was in the area.

“A lot of things aligned that day,” Barrett said.

At first Barrett spotted Jimmy’s paddle and then one of his passengers said they heard a call for help.

“So as soon as I turned the boat towards him, I realized his life preserver had been in the upper portion of his head, and he was hanging on for dear life,” Barrett said.

They knew they had to save his life, so they got close to him, and helped him get onboard their vessel. 

Apparently, Jimmy is a drug counselor and a recovering addict.

“How funny is it that I’ve been sober for seven years and I get saved by a tiki bar?” Jimmy laughed.

Surprisingly, it was not just any tiki bar- it was one packed priests and seminarians from the Paulist Fathers, a Catholic retreat on the lake. Remember that Jimmy prayed for help for some heavenly intervention? Well, his prayers were answered in form of holy men on a floating tiki bar. Coincidence? Doesn’t look like it. 

The priests and seminarians who were onboard are certain that Jimmy’s rescue was not at all natural or normal. They believe that a supernatural and divine force influenced their availability to help Jimmy right when and where he needed them. 

“We’re missionaries,” said Chris Malano, a second-year seminarian. “For us, that day, that was our mission to be present and to help someone in need.”

Jimmy’s job and life career was to help people drowning in addiction, but he was literally saved from drowning by God’s holy men, right after praying. 

“I just take that as a sign from God that he’s got me here for a real reason,” said MacDonald.

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After 5 months of impromptu travel around the world, Pipsqueak the adventure canine reunites with her family

Renee Yates

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The wave of the pandemic saw the separation of a little daschund from her family during a four-year sailing trip with her Australian family. 

As the pandemic built momentum across the world, her owners, Zoe and Guy Eibeck and their kids all rushed back home, but sadly, their dog Pipsqueak couldn’t. 

Since the separation in March, Pipsqueak travelled 17,000 kilometers to her home in Sydney- a journey most humans can’t boast of. The adventure took her through North and South Carolina, Los Angeles, Auckland, and Melbourne. It must have a scary journey for her, especially since she was in the company of strangers along the way.

At a point, it seemed like fate didn’t want Pipsqueak back home. The poor canine was booked on a cargo flight from Melbourne to Sydney, but unfortunately, it was full. In light of this, she had to take a longer route before she could be reunited with her family in Sydney. 

Her story got some attention, and luckily, Virgin Australia swooped in to save the day. Little Pipsqueak was booked on an early flight to Sydney for her to rest her tired legs.  

According to Olivia Cayzer, a crew member on the flight, the daschund was given the VIP treatment. Well, she deserved it and more after the kind of ordeal she had been through. 

Pipsqueak was finally reunited with her family after an early drop-off. She was led through the terminal where the whole Eilbeck family was waiting for her with open arms and gushing emotions. 

“She’s part of our family and it’s been five months and that’s a long time time to miss anybody,” Mr Eilbeck said. 

“During these difficult times it’s nice to be able to put a smile on someone’s face,” said Glen Monoley, Virgin Australia group general manager. In his statement, he said that he was glad they played an important role in reuniting Pipsqueak with her family after many months apart. 

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Amazing

Identical Twin Sisters Married To Identical Twin Brothers Both Announce Pregnancies

Shannon Jackson

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No one knows if this was planned, but identical twins Brittany and Briana Salyers, married to Josh and Jeremy Salyers – also identical twins are both expecting at the same time. They broke the news via a Baywatch-themed Instagram post on Friday, and the story has made headlines since then. 

In the Instagram post captioned “Guess what!!?? BOTH couples are pregnant!,” Josh and Jeremy wore lifeguard costumes while their brides, now to be mothers, dressed up in one-piece bathing suits that read “Baby Watch,” and struck poses that clearly gave off their baby bumps. The rest of the caption also states the fact that their children will be cousins, genetic siblings, and quaternary multiples! Isn’t that amazing? 

The twin couples hit the spotlight when they appeared on TLC’s Our Twinsane Wedding, and this wonderful news only two years after shows how well their journeys as wedded couples has gone. Their joint marriage was officiated by identical twin ministers at the 2018 Twins Days Festival in Twinsburg, Ohio – exactly where they had met only one year ago. The marriage ceremony was themed “Twice Upon a Time” and now they are expecting to add at least two more members to their happy twin family. 

Brittany revealed at the marriage ceremony that the idea of living in the same house to raise their children together in harmony made them really happy, and now they get to bring their imaginations into reality. Brittany said, “When we have children, my and Josh’s children will be genetic siblings to Briana and Jeremy’s Children. We imagine it will be like two moms and two dads all raising our families together.”

The sisters share a special bond typical of twins. Before their double pregnancy revelation, Brittany and Briana have always shared the urge to do things the same way- matching outfits, and double dating, which eventually led to their marriage to Josh and Jeremy. Each one of the sisters sees herself as incomplete without the other- something like being two halves of a whole. 

From the joint wedding to the joint pregnancies, everything has felt like a fairytale. According to Briana, getting married to identical twins has always been the goal, and they had already foreseen it since their kindergarten days. 

They knew the chances of having such a perfect future were really slim. For their dreams to come true, the stars had to align in quintessential harmony, and it seems like they did. 

In Brittany’s own words, “I get to marry the man of my dreams and at the same time I get to look over next to me and see my twin sister marrying the man of her dreams.” 

Their fairytale story can get a lot better if they both give birth to twins. Yes, the chances of that happening are like a googolplex to one, but who knows? It just might happen. 

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Cat Turns UNEXPECTED COLOR After Undergoing Treatment For Fungal Infection!

Shannon Jackson

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Did you know that as of 2018 there were more than 183.9 million dogs and cats in the United States alone? It’s true! In the United States of America, pets are common and beloved by families from one coast to the next. Despite having so many pets in the country, pet insurance covers only around 1.2% of all pets! What does this mean? Well, when your kitty gets sick then you are going to have to pay out of pocket. For one pet-owner in Thailand, treating their cat for a fungal infection turned into quite the experience and we aren’t just talking about expenses. If you love turmeric and love cats, you are about to get the perfect story. Let’s jump right in!

When one woman in Thailand noticed that her cat was struggling with an infection, she wasn’t entirely sure as to what to do. Like people in the United States, this cat owner didn’t have any pet insurance and she sure wasn’t in a hurry to lose her finances over a potentially minimal problem. Upon inspecting her cat, she noticed that the furry little animal had been struggling with a minor fungal infection. Infections can quickly get out of hand, so it is important to act as soon as you are made aware of them.

As the cat owner from Thailand looked over her pet, she realized that fungal infections could be treated through household remedies. After spending some time on the internet, the pet owner would find a remedy that included a turmeric rub. While her cat wasn’t going on the grill, it certainly would smell like the inside of her pantry after this treatment! Understanding that the treatment wouldn’t harm her cat, the owner began to make a paste out of the common kitchen spice before coating her cat’s wound with the medicine.

According to the recipe that the cat owner had followed, side-effects were incredibly unlikely. Still, the pet owner was careful as she applied the paste liberally from one section of her cat’s tail all the way to her furry little head. The poor cat and lady would undergo a shocking revelation when they realized that the turmeric had died the cat’s fur yellow! The cat, named Ka-Pwong, would end up recovering from the fungal infection but their yellow fur would not be forgotten.

After taking a few pictures of Ka-Pwong, the cat owner would share the images on the web where they would quickly go viral. The cat’s entire coat would be colored a bright yellow with streaks of orange. Ka-Pwong, typically a white cat, ended up looking like the very clone of a real life Pikachu! Thankfully, the cool coat was not the only benefit that Ka-Pwong received. The turmeric ended up aiding the healing process while preventing Ka-Pwong from licking the wounds. Now, Ka-Pwong is free from infection and instead viral on the internet!

What do you think of Ka-Pwong’s yellow coat? Would you want your own ‘Pikachu’ in the future?!

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Adorable Pop Culture Dog Fence Brightens Neighborhood

Renee Yates

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Dogs are a special light in many people’s lives, thanks to their infectious personalities and undoubtedly adorable faces. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, dogs have played an especially important role, keeping their owners company and entertaining families while they stayed safe and stayed home.

Out of all the sweet, feel-good stories that have emerged this year, one of the best for dog lovers comes from a pretty pooch named Burger King, or Burger for short. Burger and his brother Ripley are part of the Stanley family, and their owner Brian hatched a plan to boost morale in their neighborhood with the help of his four-legged pals.

As COVID-19 flipped the world upside down, Brian decided to make some changes to their yard. After finding himself without work and his son at home following the school closures, he and his son Cameron were left to hang with the dogs all day. Burger and Ripley are always watching their neighbors and keeping a close eye on them through a hole in the fence. This is a huge pastime for the dogs as they spend a good chunk of the day examining the neighbor’s every move. None of the local residents or passer-by seemed to mind the observers, but Brian thought he could step things up a notch and make the dog’s pastime more fun.

Brian got to work, adding an artistic flair around the hole to give Burger and Ripley an unforgettable background. His creation became a big hit with the neighborhood, who eagerly await the next masterpiece. All of the dog fence art is built from cardboard, so Brian can just swap the painted pieces out when he’s ready to give the dogs a new backdrop. 

The father and son pair observed more foot and bicycle traffic on the street beside the fence, which further inspired the dog-themed artwork to frame the hole. Burger’s trademark move of sticking his head through the window was made even better with the new art. 

Brian’s successful neighborhood project dates back a year ago when Burger was just a puppy who wouldn’t stop digging a hole in the ground by the fence. Brian cut a small hole in the fence to give him a window and distract him from digging. It worked and eventually led to a promising project that entertains and delights everyone in the neighborhood. Pictures of the dogs at the fence line have become extremely popular on social media too, as Brian started an Instagram account for the canine brothers @thedogfence.

It all started with a Paws poster modeled after the Jaws shark post. Burger and Ripley would stick their noses through the fence, surrounded by a deep rich blue color much like the shark-infested waters from the famous movie. It’s hard to resist the funny sight of the dogs saying hello, unaware of the artwork decorating the scene.

Many people also loved the recreation of Edvard Munch’s painting The Scream. The fresh take was appropriately titled The Bark. A Pacman painting was another big hit as Burger and Ripley posed for super cute photos showing them in the center of the game. Although this Fourth Of July was unlike any other due to the ongoing pandemic, the twist on the traditional Uncle Sam poster brought a smile to many faces. The dogs did their best to attract new friends to play fetch with the colorful creation. 

Burger is a funny and friendly pooch, a mix between a husky and a golden retriever, and he was adopted as a young puppy. He’s all about attention and seems to enjoy the backyard project, which is something the entire family works can get involved in. The traffic-stopping sight attracts both humans and their canine companions, who can’t help but take a closer look at the living action art.

The Stanley clan has no plans to slow down on the artwork anytime soon, as the project has become a wonderful activity they can all do together while celebrating their dogs and the positive difference they make in their lives. Plus, Burger and Ripley were adopted, and Brian reminds fans on social media to #adoptdontshop.

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