November 27, 2014
New Sign In Indiana Warm Of Turtle Crossing
Terre Haute, IN (AP) State crews in Indiana have put up “Turtle Crossing” signs along a busy road running beside a wildlife area in Terre Haute.
The signs mark an area where turtles of various species are killed by vehicles as they try to cross National Avenue on the northern edge of the Wabashiki Fish and Wildlife Area just west of the Wabash River, said Amber Slaughterbeck, natural resource programmer for the Vigo County parks department.
Slaughterbeck said she hoped the signs will raise awareness among drivers about the danger facing the turtles that she first noticed in 2009 when she was a student at nearby St. Mary-of-the-Woods College. She told the Tribune-Star she found dead turtles all over the road.
“It was like a massacre of these turtles, so I pulled my car over and started walking along the guardrail,” she said. “At that point, I thought I would save just a few turtles and see where it goes. I came back the next day and next day and realized that there were a lot of turtles to be saved.”
Slaughterbeck and volunteers have moved more than 2,000 turtles from the roadside to a nearby lake in recent years.
Volunteer Deborah Elliott-Kesler said she’s seen drivers try to intentionally hit the animals.
Indiana Department of Transportation spokeswoman Debbie Calder said the signs are temporary while the agency considers ways to protect the reptiles. She said the ultimate plan is to raise money for fencing and tunnels.
“It is not just the turtles. We have pulled river otters out of the road,” she said.
9lb Of Turkey Gobbled Down In Ten Minutes Equals $5,000
Mashantucket, CT (AP) Competitive eater Joey Chestnut has won a turkey-eating contest in Connecticut, setting a record by devouring an entire bird.
Ten contestants vied to see who could eat the most of a 20-pound turkey in a competition Saturday at Foxwoods Resort Casino.
Chestnut ate 9.35 pounds of meat off the bone in 10 minutes. According to Major League Eating, the food equivalent of the NFL, he bested the previous record, which was held by Sonya Thomas, who ate 5.25 pounds of turkey in November 2011.
Chestnut, a San Jose, California, resident who turns 31 on Tuesday, is ranked the top competitive eater in the world.
He took home a $5,000 check after stuffing his face with turkey. The remainder of the $10,000 purse was divided among other contestants.
Group To Hold Pit Bull Parade After Ban Dropped
Providence, RI (AP) A group of pit bull lovers plans to hold a pit bull parade to celebrate after a judge threw out a 10-year-old ban on the dogs in a Rhode Island city.
WLNE-TV reports the nonprofit group Pit Bulls for PTSD plans to hold the parade on Sunday in Pawtucket.
A Superior Court judge on Tuesday found a city ordinance that had banned pit bulls since 2004 was invalid. The ruling follows a 2013 state law that prohibits cities and towns from banning specific dog breeds.
The parade will start at a dog park and then loop through the neighborhood.
It will end with a free dog training session. Pit Bulls for PTSD trains pit bulls to become service dogs for people with post-traumatic stress disorder and children with autism.
It’s A Rat, It’s A Beaver — No, It’s A Hutia!
Baninoa, Cuba (AP) Some people keep guinea pigs or hamsters as pets.
But in Cuba, where a larger, more exotic rodent runs wild, Ana Pedraza and her husband prefer the hutia with a rope-like tail and long front teeth, the hutia looks like a giant rat, only cuter, some would say.
They live in Cuba and other Caribbean islands where they are sometimes hunted for food.
But Pedraza and her husband Rafael Lopez say they only want to want to protect and take care of the animals, which measure nearly a foot long (about 30 centimeters), with the largest ones weighing in bigger than a small dog.
The couple began collecting hutias about five years ago when they found one languishing on a roadside and named her Congui. They found her a mate and now have more than a half-dozen hutias in their home about 25 miles (40 kilometers) east of the capital, Havana.
Congui and her brood like to drink sweetened coffee and munch on crackers and vegetables. Her son Pancho enjoys an occasional nip of rum.
One Of The Weirdest Stories Ever: Pooh Dissed Over ‘Gender’
Warsaw, Poland (AP) Officials in a Polish town have opposed a proposition to name a playground after Winnie-the-Pooh due to the bear’s unclear gender and immodest clothing.
The matter was debated in a closed-door meeting weeks ago in the central Polish town of Tuszyn, but didn’t get much media attention in Poland until recent days.
Voice recordings of the meeting were leaked to the media in which officials complained that Pooh Bear is immodestly dressed and also lacks a clear gender. One called the bear a “hermaphrodite.”
Some said a fully clothed Polish cartoon bear named Uszatek would be a better choice.
One of the Pooh Bear opponents, Ryszard Cichy, told a newspaper that he had been joking at the end of a discussion on a playground that had gone on too long.
City’s Ugly Christmas Tree Prompts Public Outcry
Reading, PA (AP) A Christmas tree that might make Charlie Brown think twice is getting kicked to the curb a little early after residents of a Pennsylvania town complained it was too ugly.
Reading’s spindly 50-foot spruce drew the ire of residents who said it was ruining their holiday spirit.
Now a group led by the city council president is raising money to buy and decorate a more impressive replacement. The current tree is topped with a lighted pretzel, a nod to the area’s many bakeries.
The puny pine was a last-minute stand-in taken from a city park. The city had planned to get its tree from a farm, but the owner wouldn’t let the crews drive on the wet ground when they went to pick it up.
Officials are hoping to have a do-over tree lighting ceremony next weekend.