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Oct. 4, 2016: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Passengers called for help and jumped into action when a stray dog climbed aboard a metro train in Moscow on Monday morning, ready to give birth. The new mom had nine puppies in a space the passengers made for her. “The whole [train] car was moved when she gave birth,” an eyewitness said. At the next stop, metro personnel asked the passengers to get off the train and wait for the next one while they brought the train to the depot to get help for the dog and her litter. The family is now living at the Zoorassvet animal shelter in Moscow, and they’re looking for people to adopt the puppies and their mom. — Read it at Russia’s RT
A new study finds that wild-born, rehabilitated bonobos can develop skills to crack nuts with a tool that are similar to that of wild chimpanzees. Bonobos rarely use even simple tools in the wild. This type of complex tool use hasn’t been documented in bonobos before. The study shows that bonobos have a greater diversity of manipulative ability than other primates, and select the most efficient hammer stones for cracking nuts. They were found to crack more nuts per minute than their chimpanzee cousins. The study was published in the American Journal of Primatology. — Read it at Science Daily
The Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog, which is native to California, was on the brink of extinction. But the 3-inch frog is making an encouraging comeback in Yosemite National Park. Their numbers had a sharp decline when non-native trout that were stocked for fishing gobbled them up. Then, disease wiped the frogs out from 90 percent of their habitat. Efforts to save the frog have led to a sevenfold increase in their population in Yosemite in the last 20 years, new research finds. The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. — Read it at Phys.org
Horses were Nelly Jacobs’ life. But she gave up riding 30 years ago, when she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Now 87 years old, Jacobs struggles with communication and basic tasks, and is restricted to a wheelchair at the nursing home where she lives in the Netherlands. Recently, a group called Hidden Desires helped her go for one last horseback ride, fulfilling her final wish. A local riding school was able to create a special harness so Jacobs could be placed on the backs of two horses, and safely experience the feeling of being on a horse’s back one more time. In a touching video, Jacobs can be seen smiling seconds after the ride begins. — Watch it at People Pets
A critically endangered Western lowland gorilla was born at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio on Sept. 28 to dad Mac and mom Tabibu. Days later, keepers were able to determine that the baby, named JJ, is a boy. JJ is the first offspring for Mac, who’s from a family of famed gorillas born at the zoo. He and his brother were the first twin gorillas born in the Western hemisphere. And JJ’s great grandmother is Colo, the first gorilla born in human care, and the oldest gorilla on record. She will be 60 years old in December. For now, JJ is bonding with his mom behind the scenes at the zoo. — Read it at the Columbus Zoo via Facebook
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