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Today’s news: Too many geese and the return of porpoises to San Fran

January 4, 2012

Here are some fascinating articles that the humans (and animals ) at Current Instincts are reading today. Did we miss something major? Let us know below or send us an email.

1. Facing consequences of success in bid to save a goose. Here’s proof that you really can have too much of a good thing. Efforts to save snow geese have been so effective that they’re now considered nuisances in areas like Missouri and farms along the Mississippi River. The mass amounts of geese have been squeezing out other species and destroying nesting grounds. (New York Times)

2. Harbor porpoises return to San Francisco Bay. Harbor porpoises haven’t been seen in San Francisco Bay since World War II – but now they’re showing up again. At the time, the bay was a major ship-building center and naval port, making it a pretty nasty place for marine animals to live. They’ve been gone so long, researchers think the species might have forgotten how gross the area was in the first place. (Discovery News)

We iz no eating meat. We iz playing on jungle gym.

3. Meat-eating panda caught on camera. When most of us think of pandas, we picture them noming on some delicious(?) bamboo. And that’s mostly what they do – 99 percent of a panda’s diet is bamboo. But now a camera set up at a zoo in China has video footage of a panda eating a dead gnu. It’s unclear if the panda killed the gnu. First of all, ew. Second of all, why can’t this zoo keep track of their animals? (MSNBC)

4. Return of wolves has helped Yellowstone Park. Not only are wolves super awesome to look at, but they also kick-ass and take names. The return of wolves to Yellowstone Park (dibs on that screenplay!) has helped balance out the ecosystem, mainly by curbing elk populations. Less elk also means healthier aspen and willow tree populations, since elks used to nom on those like no ones business. (Yale 360)

5. Rhino poaching soars, horns worth more than gold. 2011 was a really bad year for rhinos in South Africa. The street value of one horn has soared to $65,000 a kilogram. Since this is America we don’t know what kilograms are, but those sound like scary numbers. A total of 443 rhinos were killed in South Africa in 2011. (MSNBC)

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