Sunday November 19, 2017
Home World Australia&#82...

Australia’s Queensland Zoo’s Five-year-old Komodo Dragon ‘acts more like Dog than Land crocodile’

Kozzie, along with his seven brothers and sisters, was imported into Australia five years ago from a Los Angeles zoo

0
194
Crocodile and a Turtle (Representational Image), Flickr

Sydney, Nov 1, 2016 : A five-year-old Komodo Dragon in Australia’s Queensland zoo has been described to be more like a puppy dog than a man-eating land crocodile, media reported.

Port Douglas-based Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures zoo operations manager Michael O’Brien told Xinhua news agency that the 1.9 metre long reptile named Kozzie was an intelligent lizard that genuinely took interest in its surroundings and was not a threat to humans.

NewsGram brings to you current foreign news from all over the world.

Kozzie, along with his seven brothers and sisters, was imported into Australia five years ago from a Los… Click To Tweet

When we work in his enclosure he tries to climb on you and that is very un-reptile like,” O’Brien said.

“He seeks out human attention,” he added.

O’Brien believes that the daily contact that Kozzie has with the zoo keepers has made it impossible for him to look at humans as food.

“It’s very pretty rare occurrence for Komodo’s (to eat humans) as their diet includes goats and water buffaloes,” O’Brien said.

“Kozzie has never bitten anyone and has acclimatised being around people.”

NewsGram brings to you top news around the world today.

“He recognised that his food is rats, beef, chicken and not its keepers that he wants to make a meal of, which is good,” he said.

Kozzie, along with his seven brothers and sisters, was imported into Australia five years ago from a Los Angeles zoo.

“We have had Kozzie for three years and we are planning a premium product in the next few weeks which will allow the public to interact with him,” he said, adding that the new attraction will be opened to children above 10 years of age.

Komodo dragons which are native to Indonesia are capable of reaching lengths of up to 3.1 metres.

Check out NewsGram for latest international news updates.

The reptiles are protected under Indonesian law with the government setting up the Komodo National Park in 1980 to protect the animal from extinction.

Also known as land crocodiles, these carnivores are known to live till about 60 years.

O’Brien said although Kozzie seemed friendly towards his keepers, they were aware that he was still a reptile that could attack and always had their guard up in case of an unwanted situation. (IANS)

Next Story

Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster: Stray Dogs Receive Treatment From a US-Based Team of Veterinarians

The dogs survived despite what was called “open season,” when soldiers were allowed to hunt the animals after the nuclear disaster

0
22
Chernobyl
Stray dogs near the ghost city of Prypyat near Chernobyl. RFERL

Chernobyl, August 23, 2017: A Boston-based international animal-welfare group says it is sending a veterinary team to Ukraine to treat dogs near the site of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

The Four Paws group said on August 20 that hundreds of descendants of abandoned dogs in the Chernobyl area are wandering in and around the destroyed reactor and many live in areas with radioactive contamination, including in the ghost city of Prypyat.

The veterinarians will join a group of other experts already in the region to provide rabies vaccinations, medical treatment, and neutering services to dogs living within the so-called “exclusion zone.”

“Due to wild animals who also live within the exclusion zone, the stray dogs are often infected with rabies, posing a risk to people who work at the plant,” the group said.

ALSO READ: Man from Taiwan Builds Wheelchairs for the Injured and Disabled Dogs 

The dogs survived despite what was called “open season,” when soldiers were allowed to hunt the animals after the nuclear disaster, the group said.

“Originally, the dogs retreated to the surrounding woods after the exclusion zone was established, but packs of wolves and food scarcity forced them back to the abandoned city and toward the still-active nuclear plant,” said Julie Sanders, Four Paws international director of companion animals.

“There, the workers began to feed the dogs and they have stayed ever since,” she said.

The explosion and fire at the Chernobyl plant on April 26, 1986, was the world’s worst civilian nuclear accident and has left radioactivity levels high in areas around the plant.

Work has been under way since 2010 to build a massive shelter over the damaged reactor and seal in about 200 tons of uranium thought to be still there. (RFE/RL)

Next Story

Can Flourishing Islamic State (ISIS) be Stopped in Afghanistan?

The truth about IS and Afghanistan is definitely no picnic

0
86
Taliban fighters react to a speech by their senior leader in the Shindand district of Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27, 2016.
Taliban fighters react to a speech by their senior leader in the Shindand district of Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27, 2016. The rise of IS in Afghanistan has become such a priority that U.S. and Afghan forces sometimes support the Taliban while battling IS, VOA
  • Depending on the location, the proliferation of IS has drawn varied resistance from the Afghan military, U.S. air support and ground troops, local militias, Taliban forces and other militant groups
  • Afghan army planes on Wednesday night accidentally air dropped vital supplies of food and water to IS militants in the Darzab district of northern Jouzjan province instead of to their own besieged troops
  • In the Tora Bora area, where IS has made a strong stand in recent days, local villagers and militias joined with Taliban to rout IS

June 25, 2017: The Islamic State group is rapidly expanding in parts of Afghanistan, advancing militarily into areas where it once had a weak presence and strengthening its forces in core regions, according to Afghan and U.S. officials.

Depending on the location, the proliferation of IS has drawn varied resistance from the Afghan military, U.S. air support and ground troops, local militias, Taliban forces and other militant groups.

Attacking IS has become such a priority in the country, that disparate forces sometimes join together in the ad-hoc fight, with Afghan and U.S. forces finding themselves inadvertently supporting the enemy Taliban in battling IS.

Confusion leads to mistakes

All too often, officials say, mistakes are made due to confusion on the ground.

Afghan army planes on Wednesday night accidentally air dropped vital supplies of food and water to IS militants in the Darzab district of northern Jouzjan province instead of to their own besieged troops, provincial police chief, Rahmatullah Turkistani told VOA. The supplies were meant to help Afghan forces that are countering twin attacks by IS and Taliban militants but were used instead by IS.

“It’s not getting better in Afghanistan in terms of IS,” U.S. Chief Pentagon Spokeswoman Dana White told VOA this week. “We have a problem, and we have to defeat them and we have to be focused on that problem.”

Reinforcements for the IS cause reportedly are streaming into isolated areas of the country from far and wide. There are reports of fighters from varied nationalities joining the ranks, including militants from Pakistan, India, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Russia and Central Asian neighbors.

Confusing scenarios

Still, the Islamic State-Khorasan (ISK) as IS is known in Afghanistan remains a fragmented group composed of differing regional forces with different agendas in different parts of the country.

“IS-K is still conducting low-level recruiting and distribution of propaganda in various provinces across Afghanistan, but it does not have the ability or authority to conduct multiple operations across the country,” a recent Pentagon report said. But where it operates, IS is inflicting chaos and casualties and causing confusing scenarios for disparate opponents.

In the Tora Bora area, where IS has made a strong stand in recent days, local villagers and militias joined with Taliban to rout IS. IS regained ground after a few days, leading to U.S. military air attacks on IS positions in conjunction with Afghan intelligence instructions and army operations.

IS fighters reportedly have fled from mountain caves of Tora Bora, where al-Qaida’s leader Osama bin Laden hid from U.S. attack in 2001.

Families displaced

IS fighters were also reportedly advancing in neighboring Khogyani district, displacing hundreds of families, according to district officials. It is one of several areas in Nangarhar province, near the Pakistani border, where IS has been active for over two years.

Fierce clashes in the Chaparhar district of Nangarhar last month left 21 Taliban fighters and seven IS militants dead, according to a provincial spokesman. At least three civilians who were caught in the crossfire were killed and five others wounded.

“IS has overpowered Taliban in some parts of Nangarhar because the Taliban dispatched its elite commando force called Sara Qeta (Red Brigade) to other parts of the country, including some northern provinces to contain the growing influence of IS there,” Wahid Muzhda, a Taliban expert in Kabul, told VOA.

ALSO READ: Flashback to Terror: 1993 Mumbai Blasts Judgement to Hail on June 27 After 24 Years

Recruiting unemployed youths

IS has also expanded in neighboring Kunar province, where, according to provincial police chief, it has a presence in at least eight districts and runs a training base, where foreign members of IS, train new recruits.

Hundreds of miles from Nangarhar, IS is attempting to establish a persistent presence in several northern provinces where it has found a fertile ground for attracting militants and recruiting unemployed youths, mostly between the age of 13 and 20.

IS has been able to draw its members from the Pakistani Taliban fighters, former Afghan Taliban, and other militants who “believe that associating with or pledging allegiance” to IS will further their interests, according to the Pentagon report.

Hundreds of militants have joined IS ranks in northern Jouzjan and Sar-e-Pul province where local militant commanders lead IS-affiliate groups in several districts.

Darzab district

Qari Hekmat, an ethnic Uzbek and former Taliban militant who joined IS a year ago, claims to have up to 500 members, including around 50 Uzbek nationals who are affiliated with the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) — previously associated with al-Qaida and Taliban in Afghanistan.

IS and Taliban are reportedly fighting over the control of Darzab district in Jouzjan which they stormed this week from two different directions and besieged scores of government forces. The Taliban has reportedly captured the center of the district while IS militants control the city outskirts.

Afghanistan faces a continuing threat from as many as 20 insurgent and terrorist networks present or operating in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, including IS, the Pentagon said.

“In areas where the government has limited influence and control, IS attempts to emerge and expand there,” Ateequllah Amarkhail, an analysts and former Army general in Kabul told VOA.

Hit-and-hide strategy

IS has also claimed responsibility for several recent attacks in urban areas, however, with a hit-and-hide strategy that is proving effective. And it is engaging too in more skirmishes with U.S. forces that initially were sent to the country to help Afghan forces halt the spread of Taliban.

Three American service members based in eastern Afghanistan were killed in April during operations targeting IS militants, according to the Pentagon.

“ISIS-K remains a threat to Afghan and regional security, a threat to U.S. and coalition forces, and it retains the ability to conduct high-profile attacks in urban centers,” the Pentagon said. (VOA)

Next Story

India’s Textile and Fashion Heritage now part of Google project

Google's project 'We Wear Culture' is collaborating with 183 renowned cultural institutions from all around the world including India and its objective is to let people explore history of clothes dating as early as 3,000 years ago

0
97
we wear culture
Google's new art project 'We wear Culture' digitizes fashion, Wikimedia
  • Google’s project ‘We Wear Culture’ is collaborating with 183 renowned cultural institutions from all around the world including India
  • It intends to trace the story and importance of Indian textiles from ancient sculptures
  • Its objective is to let people explore history of clothes dating as early as 3,000 years ago

June 15, 2017: To a certain extent, a culture is defined by what is worn by its people. In a country as diverse as India, vast and varied spectrum of cultures and clothes is one of the specialties. Google’s latest virtual exhibition project now provides us the opportunity to explore and know more about it.

Google’s project ‘We Wear Culture’ is collaborating with 183 renowned cultural institutions from all around the world including India and its objective is to let people explore history of clothes dating as early as 3,000 years ago, from the ancient Silk Road to the unmatched elegance of the Indian Saree,  from the courtly fashion of Versailles, to the Victorian ballgowns with intricate thread work.

According to Amit Sood, director of Google Arts and Culture,”We invite everyone to browse the exhibition on their phones or laptops and learn about the stories behind what you wear. You might be surprised to find out that your Saree, jeans or the black dress in your wardrobe have a centuries-old story. What you wear is true culture and more often than not a piece of art.”

Culture is defined by what is worn by its people. Click To Tweet

The company also mentioned that noteworthy collections from Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (CSMVS) and varied weaves from across India, from Gharchola to Patola to Temple to Ikat sarees will be included in the online project, as it intends to trace the story and importance of Indian textiles from ancient sculptures.

ALSO READ: New Google Project Digitizes World’s Top Fashion Archives.

According to PTI reports, the world fashion exhibit also includes designs from north-eastern India including the weaves of tribes such as the Nagas, Meitis. it will showcase the traditional attire from Meghalaya called ‘Dhara’ or ‘Nara’ worn by the Khasi women as well.

As a part of the exhibit, Sewa Hansiba Museum has brought the unique colorful and rich embroidery arts, applique and mirror work from different communities such as the Ahir, Rabari, Chaudhury Patel and many others from the western part of India online.

The exhibition conducted by Salar Jung Museum brings to light the Sherwani and its journey of becoming the royal fashion statement of the Nizams from 19th century Hyderabad. Fashion and textiles enthusiasts can revisit Colonial Indian attires with Dr Bhau Daji Lad Mumbai City Museum. Over 400 online exhibitions and stories sharing a total of 50,000 photos, videos and other documents on world fashion are open to exploration as well.

The ‘We wear Culture’ initiative highlights significant events in the growth of the world fashion industry; the icons, the movements, the game changers and the trendsetters like Alexander McQueen, Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Gianni Versace, Audrey Hepburn and many more.

– prepared by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang