Australia Seal season's a busy time for rescue groups, but not all washed-up pups are in need
Drowned migrants get 'dignified' burial in Tunisia cemetery
A cemetery in southern Tunisia for migrants who drowned crossing the Mediterranean in the hope of a better life in Europe is already half full -- even before it is formally opened. Jardin d'Afrique, French for Garden of Africa, is for those who were "the wretched of the sea", said Rachid Koraichi, the Algerian artist and Sufi Muslim who built the cemetery. These migrants, many of whom drowned after boarding flimsy and overloaded boats while facing extortion from "gangsters and terrorists", deserve a dignified resting place, he said.
It is seal season along the coasts of south-east South Australia and western Victoria, a time of year when juvenile seals head to shore as their mothers hunt.
It means more seal sightings and therefore one of the busiest times of the year for the Australian Marine Wildlife Research and Rescue Organisation (AMWRRO).
Founder Aaron Machado is asking for beach-lovers to take care.
"At the Coorong we've already had one tragedy where a fisherman has been fishing most of the day, next to a seal … and then a four-wheel drive doing great speeds over 60kph ran straight over the top of it," he said.
Plastic, chemicals and a devastating hit for fishing
The chemicals on the sunken ship will endanger nature and wildlife for decadesThe unlucky ship had towers of containers stacked upon each other, many containing chemicals highly dangerous to the environment.
"That's unfortunately going to happen where you have vehicles on beaches and critters who come ashore looking like a bit of seaweed."
A not-for-profit based in Adelaide, the conservation and rescue organisation is open 24/7.
But Mr Machado is stressing the importance of learning when an animal is — or is not — in need of rescue or assistance.
"We've had probably in excess of 1,000, 1,200 phone calls for the past three weeks," he said.
"A lot of people may live in areas where they haven't seen a seal on the beach before ... but because you may not have seen it in the past, it doesn't mean it's not supposed to be there."
Returning to shore to rest after a few days at sea is completely normal behaviour for the juvenile seals.
They may need help, however, if they have an open wound, are tangled in debris, or skinny enough to see ribs and a dip between the shoulder blades.
'Space pups': Mouse sperm stored on ISS produces healthy young
Turns out the comic books were wrong. © Teruhiko Wakayama This September 11, 2020, image courtesy of Teruhiko Wakayama, University of Yamanashi, shows healthy offspring and next generation of mice derived from space preserved spermatozoa Japanese researchers found mouse sperm exposed to high levels of cosmic radiation for nearly six years produced a large brood of healthy, unremarkable "space pups." Their study was published Friday in Science Advances -- which noted no signs so far of Mousezillas or rodent Hulks.
If an animal appears in need, Mr Machado warns people to contact the professionals first, as seals can become aggressive and distressed.
"They could lash out … make a phone call before you interact," he said.
Two main species can be spotted along the coastline — the long-nosed fur seal and the endangered Australian sea lion.
It is an offence to harm or kill either protected animal and could result in a $100,000 fine.
Portland Tourist Association president Dennis Carr said now was the time to spot seal pups from a safe distance along the beach at Cape Bridgewater.
"They're running along the foreshore there in the late afternoons … usually around 3:00pm or 4:00pm," he said.
"They come in with the waves and play around and surf the waves.
"Just remember there are reasons for the rules; it's to protect our seals and all our fish life."
Florida families and friends desperate for answers as rescue operation continues in condo collapse .
Search and rescue teams are currently battling weather and small fires as they comb through the massive pile of rubble that resulted from a 12-story beachfront condo's collapse early Thursday morning, leaving roughly 160 people still unaccounted for as of Friday afternoon. First responders pulled three more bodies from the rubble overnight, bringing the total death toll to four. Families of those who are unaccounted for are not giving up hope. Rachel Spiegel said her parents had lived in the apartment building for about 4 ½ years, and her dad was traveling during the collapse but her mom was in the condo.