In the beginning of things men were animals and animals men. ~ Algonquin saying

"For instance, on the planet Earth, man had always assumed that he was more intelligent than dolphins because he had achieved so much — the wheel, New York, wars and so on — whilst all the dolphins had ever done was muck about in the water having a good time. But conversely, the dolphins had always believed that they were far more intelligent than man — for precisely the same reasons." ~ The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Horse registration bill already bucked from Salem | KVAL CBS 13 - News, Weather and Sports - Eugene, OR - Eugene, Oregon | Local & Regional News

There isn't anything Fortean or paranormal about this story, just the sad reality for many horses and their owners:

Here in Oregon, as well as all over the U.S., horses are being abandoned. Owners can't afford to properly care for them, so they neglect them or turn them loose. In some areas, you can't even give a horse away for free. Lindy Minten wants a law requiring horse owners to register their horses, believing this will help stop horse traders from taking advantage of this sad situation.

Horse traders often present themselves as rescue outfits, but in reality, they sell the horses to slaughter houses.
Her proposal would have required horses to be registered with the state for a fee under $100. In that way, the animals could be tracked so anyone “flipping” them could be caught.

“They have a reasonable justification to expect that this horse is going to be cared for until the end of its life. It’s not going to get back on the slaughter track; it’s not going to end up starving in somebody else’s field,” she said.

Unfortunately, it's a typical mind-set that "no one's gonna tell me how to raise my animals." The other side of this are the concerns legitimate horse rescue groups have concerning the expense and the ironic outcome of trying to rescue horses, but finding oneself unable to do so because of the fees:
Wayne Geiger, the founder of the Lighthouse Farm Sanctuary which rescues farm animals, opposes any plan to create a horse registration fee. He said it would only hurt legitimate rescue organizations which already struggle financially to stay afloat.

“I do believe that a lot of the responsibility should fall on the original owner of the animals. It’s up to them to make sure that their horses, their animals are going to legitimate places,” he said.

It is the owner's responsibility, but there's also the reality of the fate of the horses. Which is the more critical: the principal of the thing (owner's responsibly) or the horses?

A tough situation. But as Minten believes, even if the bill is going nowhere, it's hopefully starting a dialogue and bringing awareness.

Horse registration bill already bucked from Salem | KVAL CBS 13 - News, Weather and Sports - Eugene, OR - Eugene, Oregon | Local & Regional News

Mothman on the telephone | MOTHMAN FLUTTERINGS

I have a new post on my blog Mothman Flutterings about dreams, mechanical voices, and more:
Mothman on the telephone | MOTHMAN FLUTTERINGS

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Seal "corkscrew" deaths continue

This past summer we heard about the grisly and very strange "corkscrew" seal deaths; they are continuing, and in the same area:
Seal "corkscrew" Injuries FAQs

Wildlife Extra News - Seals killed and beheaded in Northeast England

Very sad and very disturbing:

Wildlife Extra News - Seals killed and beheaded in Northeast England

Updated List of Animal Die-Offs

An updated list of fish and bird deaths from around the world, along with official explanations. The official explanations vary: cold, poison, hit by traffic, intoxicated, getting lost, forgetting to migrate, "beats us," fireworks, fishing nets damaged, storms, earthquakes, humans killing animals, algae, and "a strange white fog caused lung infection." Er, what?

Updated List Of Animal Die-Offs

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Tucson Restaurant Serves Lion Meat Tacos

This is a hard one; I didn't want to follow this link because stories like this make me sick, sad and angry.

This story is another example of our never ending need to satisfy our gratuitous gastronomical whims: Tucson restaurant to serve up African lion tacos for $8.75 | Mail Online.

The article doesn't say where the lion meat comes from; but it doesn't much matter. Another article (linked below) reports that the lion meat comes from "...a farm in Perris, California, about 60 miles east of Los Angeles." (A "farm?" It's not a "farm," if you raise animals for meat. . .) Since lions aren't classified as endangered, it's legal to kill them and eat them, which is all the justification restaurant owner Bryan Mazon and his customer's need. Hey, they're not breaking any laws.

Adding to this hedonistic food offerng, is restaurant owner Bryan Mazon's reasoning for serving up lion meat tacos:
“I'm doing the African lion to get my name out,” he said. “I've never tried it myself, but this one really caught my eye.”
Comments left on the above articles, and on the restaurant Facebook's page, make the point that animals are killed all over the world for food. True. Many of us eat meat in the U.S. But it's not a matter of meat eating and therefore, it's all an equal playing field. Hence the word "gratuitous," and the concept of context. In the U.S. we don't need to eat lion meat. How far do we go to indulge ourselves, just because we can? If the lions were going to be killed anyway, well, what's the harm, some ask. To that I say, why are the lions going to be killed, and really, I can't see any reason to eat lion meat in that case. They're killed because they're: old, in which case, who wants to eat gamy old meat? Sick, well, ew. Culling? Shouldn't  be having lions in the first place. Canned hunts? You can guess my feelings on that.

Related articles by yours truly:
Conspiracies and Cannibalism: Animals and Advertising
Lemon Pepper Cougar and Feral Hawaiian Cats

Friday, January 21, 2011

Thursday, January 20, 2011

"Funniest Excuses for the Animal Deaths"

Funniest Excuses for the Animal Deaths - Associated Content from Yahoo! -

3. "We have received information from local residents last night. Our main theory is that the birds were scared away because of the fireworks and landed on the road, but couldn't fly away from the stress and were hit by a car," he explained to The Local on Wednesday. (The Local)

Gov. Admits Killing Birds in South Dakota

The Huffington Post reports that the Yankton, South Dakota bird die-off of Monday, Jan. 17th was caused by the government:Hundreds Of Dead Birds In South Dakota Were Killed By U.S. Government (VIDEO) The starlings were contaminating the feed; officials felt that poisoning the birds was the best way to go.
A bait laced with the poison DRC-1339 was used, though officials were surprised the birds made it so far before dying. They assure that the poisoned dead birds do not pose a risk to nearby animals or humans.
And we get the usual refrain that the massive die offs of bird, fish and cattle are "not related"

Officials don't believe any of the incidents are related, and suspect a wide range of causes to be responsible, from cold weather and fireworks to semi-truck collisions and overeating, though they admit in many instances a clear cause may never be identified.  According to The AP, mass animal deaths are not a rare occurrence.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Nick Redfern's "There's Something in the Woods...": Animal Deaths & National Security

Nick Redfern, at his blog Monster USA, has a perspective on the animals deaths the world has been witness to since right before the new year:
"An issue that has not been addressed at length, however, is that relative to concerns that elements of the government may have with respect to these events. Is there official, behind-the-scenes worry about what is presently afoot? Very possibly."
Animal Deaths and National Security, analyzes declassified FBI documents that reveal very disturbing facts about biological warfare.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Thread on ATS: Birds Signing at Night

Interesting thread at the Above Top Secret site on birds singing at night. While some birds sing and call at night (owls, etc.) what some are posting about seems very strange. This behavior noticed by some is new; as some note they've lived in the same area for years and it is only in the past year or so they've noticed this change.
Birds are now singing at night!!, page 1

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Bird Falls Go Hollywood

People, people, people, there has been no fall of pigeons upon the seedy streets of Hollywood .  . .

Yesterday, I followed a link on the always exploitative and titillating Jeff Rense site to a story about another bird fall, this one in Hollywood, California. Right on Sunset Blvd. My old home, I lived in that area for many years. Birds falling to their deaths in my old neighborhood; I couldn't resist following the lead.

Very early on in reading the article, it became clear it was a joke. Here's what I wrote yesterday on this piece on my blog Octopus Confessional:
I found the link on, where it was presented as serious. "371 Dead Birds Fall from Sky on Sunset Blvd." The article very quickly turns ugly in a not- funny- but- we- think- we're -being -funny way. Kind of nasty all the way around, with the smarmy comments about the homeless. But what I strikes me the most is the marginalization of a very serious global phenomena. Whether it's intentional, as in government Dr. Evil plant and cover-up doing its disinfo thing, or, just some smart ass being not as clever as he thinks he is, that constant, low level hum that sends the signal it's not that bad, these events aren't connected, nothing to see here, is being maintained. (371 Dead Birds Fall from Sky on LA's Sunset Blvd; Similar to California, Arkansas, Louisiana Bird Drops -)
It is obvious from reading the article no deadly fall of pigeons bloodying the streets of Hollywood has happened, but the story is being presented as real. Rense is still at it, he's highlighted the story on his site under one of his special it's the end of the world we're all going to die sections.  Deborah Dupre at has written an article about this, protesting the plight of L.A's homeless, who, according to the Associated Content article, grabbed the bloody dead bird bodies, throwing them onto the grills of hot dog vendors, apparently frenzied by hunger:
One man had already cleaned his fowl and was arguing with a hot dog vendor about frying it on his hot dog grill. The homeless held a bloody knife and shook the pigeon in the vendor's face. The pigeon's entrails hung at least a foot from the pigeon's slashed belly. The guts swayed as the homeless man passionately pointed his knife at the hot dog grill...The poor pigeons that had landed in the street were mostly squashed. A bloody mess."
Stylistically, it should be obvious that this is a hoax/creative exercise as the following excerpts show:

I heard about the horrific event from my neighbor, who happens to whistle when he talks and has a goiter on his neck.
That alone should have given it away, but here are more examples:

The hot dog vendor had abandoned his cart and a dozen or more homelesses were cutting the breasts out of the pigeon corpses and grilling the meat. They had formed a small mob. One whole pigeon corpse, still with feathers and not gutted, sat atop the grill.
Associated Content pays for articles. I tried it myself a few years ago but ended up confused as to their pay system; depending on the type of permissions and controls you choose (turning over your rights to your content to them) you get paid a certain amount per view of your article. So know that if you visit the link he's getting paid, no doubt he's received a lot of hits so far.

I did a simple search of L.A. news sources, and didn't find anything about this story at all. That, and the writing style, are clues that this is not a real event in any way, but a made up story by an entrepreneurial individual, one who is, according to his bio on Associated Content: " . . . is writing a novel titled Parade of Bums, and working on a collection of short fiction stories."

Friday, January 14, 2011

Bull Sharks in Main Street: Queensland

The horrendous floods in Australia are bringing about many strange things, including this news item of bull sharks swimming down main street:

Two bull sharks have reportedly been spotted swimming down the main street of a flooded Queensland town, 30km inland.
Butcher Steven Bateman spotted two bull sharks swimming near his Goodna shop yesterday - one of several reports of a sharks in Goodna's main street.
Ipswich local councillor Paul Tully confirmed it was a bizarre but true story out of Queensland's flood disaster.
"It would have swum several kilometres in from the river, across Evan Marginson Park and the motorway,'' Cr Tully told The Queensland Times.
Bull sharks spotted swimming down the main street in Goodna - 30km from the coast | Herald Sun

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Fish Die-Offs in Chicago, and more...

Lots of things in this article, while casually mentioned, are actually important in terms of what they mean concerning the die-offs. Blaming the cold weather, the low oxygen in the water, and other natural phenomena, for the bird and fish deaths doesn't explain much. It's so clear; we are experiencing crazy mad changes globally. True, cold weather may be a cause, but the question is: why are we having such unheard of cold weather?! Why is the oxygen in the water low? The birds in Athens may have died from hunger and being disoriented from the snow, but why were they so hungry? Obviously, low food supply, because. . . follow the dots. Manipulations by Dr. Evils, deaths caused by severe climate changes, and so on... in many ways it's a moot point.

The linked article has a world map of fish and bird die-offs.

Animal deaths: Thousands of dead fish in Chicago and hundreds of birds in California | Mail Online

Bird Deaths: Romania

Birds in Romania dead: from being drunk. Not uncommon in the animal world; still curious and Fortean in the rash of bird death reports we've been reading about from all over the globe:

Bird death mystery solved: they 'drank' themselves to death - Telegraph

More Bird Deaths: Bonnie Doon,

Report says "dozens" then "two dozen" which, technically is "dozens" I suppose, since it's more than one dozen. What's interesting is the statement the birds died from "blunt force trauma" which is what was said about the cause of bird deaths in LA at the New Year. This time, the birds in Bonnie Doon were "startled" from their roosts, which caused them to fall into the path of an oncoming truck, though the report doesn't say anything about the condition of the birds, as in, being smashed up, which one would assume would be the case if hit by a truck. Another interesting item: "...some of the birds still had berries in their mouths." If true, and they did die of "blunt trauma" that suggests a sudden and immediate force that caused the deaths; sonic possibly.
Dead birds found in Bonnie Doon area

Yesterday, in Athens, Alabama, hundreds of blackbirds were killed alongside the highway. Officials there are saying they were killed by traffic; hungry, the birds were looking for forward, became startled, and were hit by a tractor. The article goes out of its way to reiterate there is nothing unusual about the deaths, using phrases as the following:
However, the 300 or more deceased blackbirds were not killed by an unusual phenomenon, but instead by less mysterious means —
the birds killed this week were simply hungry and looking for food.
We’ve got four professionals who have come to that consensus.”
Yet contrasted with the denials, are the lists of previous bird deaths, as well as the cricket virus and marine life die-offs. Keeping the low hum of anxiety alive on the one hand on a covert level, while assuring the public that there is nothing to fear by insisting "professionals" (who work for the government) agree there is nothing untoward about the deaths.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

First dead birds, then dead fish ... now crickets - U.S. news - Environment -

More animal deaths; this time, crickets. Is it a coincidence this also comes out of LA?

A virus has killed millions of crickets raised to feed pet reptiles and those kept in zoos.

The cricket paralysis virus has disrupted supplies to pet shops across North America as a handful of operators have seen millions of their insects killed.

First dead birds, then dead fish ... now crickets - U.S. news - Environment -

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Geyserville, CA: 100 Birds Dead on Ground

Another news item of dead birds; this time from California. One on-line news mini report on this event I read ended with something close to the following comment: "Scientists say bird deaths like this (and fish kills, etc.) are common, and there's no connection between them." We see this in most all the reports; disclaimers emphasizing there's no connection, it's just coincidence, deaths like this happen all the time, humans are pattern seeking beings and so we're just noticing them now because it's been reported in the media. I'm not suggesting we panic, and I'm certainly not buying into a Christian end of days scenarios, but I do think that to deny there's a connection means one is terribly naive, or, obtuse as hell.

Just today, at work, as I was walking outside on the large field, I thought of the recent events of so many strange bird falls, and how it seems, finally, to be over. A few minutes I go inside, go on-line, and come across the Geyserville story:

Sonoma County mystery: What killed 100 birds near Geyserville? |

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Bird Deaths: Missouri

A dozen or so birds found in Jefferson County, Missouri, under an underpass. Suggested explantion, old age:

Jefferson County (KSDK) -- A NewsChannel 5 viewer called in late Saturday afternoon about more than a dozen dead birds, scattered on an overpass in Jefferson County, along Old Highway 21 and just south of Rock Creek Road.

"... World Bird Santuary, Walter Crawford, and he explained what he thought the cause of this actually common fall-out could be.

"You have an overpass there," he said. "A lot of times birds will roost under these overpasses, especially in really cold winter...and, of course, mother nature weeds out the sick, the old and the injured and it could be that these were birds that were very old and just couldn't deal with the climate."

Very well could be unrelated, but in context of all the recent bird deaths, and fish deaths, people are understandably suspicous and jittery. Related or not, who knows.

More than a dozen dead birds spotted along Missouri highway | | St. Louis, MO

Saturday, January 8, 2011

From Mysterious Universe:Startling Chupacabra Kill, or Merely Another Varmint Vanquished? | Mysterious Universe

Micah Hanks writes on the chupacabra: Startling Chupacabra Kill, or Merely Another Varmint Vanquished? I've posted here and on my Sasquatch blog Frame 352 about the trigger happy people in the U.S. who happily blast away at creatures they think might be the "chupacabra." Of course, as I and others have pointed out many times, the chupacabra is a spiny backed, red eyed, high jumping creature of the Fortean kind. Stories of the blood sucking cryptid came out of Puerto Rico, migrated to Mexico, Florida, elsewhere in the states and South and Central America, retaining its eerie high strangeness nature. No one spoke of mange ridden canines, or other mundane animals. Until, it seems, maybe three years ago or so, where reports of the latter creatures came in, mainly from the southwest but other states as well. People persisted in calling these poor creatures "chupacabra" and killed one as soon as they saw one.

So now the meme has been firmly planted: chupacabra of the true cryptid high strangeness variety, with all its conspiratorial theories -- government projects gone horribly awry, alien pets, inter-dimensional travelers, etc. -- are forgotten, and blue-gray skinned, hairless canine type creatures, probably foxes and or coyotes, etc. with mange or some type of disease have replaced the chupie of legend.

The fear persists however. Fear at seeing something unfamiliar. And so naming it with a handy pre-labeled moniker (chupacabra) and insisting the creature is unknown, a strange interloper, gives one justification for kill first, ask later.

As Micah correctly points out, the media that gladly reports on these stories, and the people that shoot away, are the same ones who laugh at the subject of cryptids, cryptozoology, and the like. Hanks quotes from a recent Fox "news" segment on a recent killing of a "chupacabra"

The legendary chupacabra has been spied, shot and killed — will bigfoot be next?
And rightfully points out the disgusting exploitative implications:
Wonderful to see that some odd-looking little creature (likely a possum, or perhaps a varmint of some sort, as we’ll get to in a moment) has been shot and killed, rather than the diminutive, lizard-like little monsters from the early Puerto Rican reports back in the 1990s. To be clear, this is not a “chupacabra” in the truest sense by any means. However, before we go any further with the report from today, is it too much to ask also that the word “Bigfoot” be capitalized? To quote Loren Coleman, author of Bigfoot: The True Story of Apes in America, since “words like Sea Serpent, Nessie, Bigfoot, Yeti, and related forms all have not been technically ‘accepted’ by systematic zoology, as of this date, the capitalized form (should) be employed.” (Curiously, the same does not typically apply to the use of the term chupacabra in Fortean literature, hence my use of the lower case… but I digress)

Startling Chupacabra Kill, or Merely Another Varmint Vanquished? | Mysterious Universe
Thank you Lesley at The Debris Field for link.

Friday, January 7, 2011

From Heidi-Lore’s Musings: A visit to Beebe

One woman's account of her visit to Beebe, Arkansas, after the bird deaths.

Heidi-Lore’s Musings

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Monday, January 3, 2011

More Bird Falls; Cover-Up's Begun?

On New Years, we saw roughly five thousand birds, mostly blackbirds, fall from the skies in Beebe, Arkansas. Authorities quickly arrived, in haz mat suits. Reasons from officials as to the cause of the birds falling to their deaths included spooked/disoriented from fireworks, storms... now it seems clear something else is afoot. Now Dead Birds Found In Louisiana:
Today in LaBarre, Louisiana, about 500 dead blackbirds and starlings were discovered, say wildlife officials. The birds were discovered lying dead on roads between Morganza, La. and New Roads, La. on highway 10.
And an as yet unconfirmed story of "10,000 birds" falling to their death in Manitoba, where authorities refused to talk to reporters.
10,000s of Birds found dead in Manitoba Authorities in Louisiana are telling people not to touch the birds, even though Dr. Jim LaCour with Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries "suggested that there might be no connection to the die-off in Arkansas on New Year's Eve and the one today in Louisiana."

An update on the Arkansas bird fall; the birds died from "blunt trauma" to their organs, mainly the liver . . . in mid-air! This suggests, possibly, some sort of weapons technology being tested. Sub-sonic is one possibility.
Arkansas State Veterinarian Dr. George Badley tells Today's THV that preliminary test results show thousands of birds died mid-air due to multiple blunt trauma to their vital organs.

" Its not that unusual but that many it make you think that its not a disease its something cataclysmic that happened all at one time," says Badley.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Nick Redfern's "There's Something in the Woods...": Owlman Oddities

Nick Redfern sums up the recent owl presence: Nick Redfern's "There's Something in the Woods...": Owlman Oddities.
As I commented over at Nick's blog, I had posted about two weeks ago that the owl activity seemed to be at an end; now I see they were just resting.

Also, as Nick points out, the recent 1,000 plus dead blackbirds from Arkansas skies is strange; is this a signal of more high strangeness bird activity?

1,000 Plus Birds: Fall Dead From Ark. Sky

BEEBE, Ark. (AP) — Wildlife officials are trying to determine what caused more than 1,000 black birds to die and fall from the sky over an Arkansas town.
The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission said Saturday that it began receiving reports about the dead birds about 11:30 p.m. the previous night. The birds fell over a 1-mile area of Beebe, and an aerial survey indicated that no other dead birds were found outside of that area.
Commission ornithologist Karen Rowe said the he birds showed physical trauma, and she speculated that "the flock could have been hit by lightning or high-altitude hail."
The Associated Press: More than 1,000 dead birds fall from sky in Ark.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Norway Puts Reflectors on Reindeer

In Norway, reindeer are wearing reflectors:

Norway's 200,000 reindeer are being fitted with reflectors to protect them from being run over.

So far about 2,000 of the animals have been fitted with reflective yellow collars or small antler tags, reports the Daily Telegraph.

Reindeers fitted with reflectors | Orange UK