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April 7, 2016: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Eight weeks after a starving sea lion pup was found sitting at a table in a gourmet seafood restaurant, the chef who found her was on board to see her off as she was released into the Pacific with eight other sea lions on Tuesday. When she was found, the 8-month-old pup weighed only half of what she should for her age. Marina was rescued by SeaWorld San Diego and named after the restaurant, the Marine Room. She’s among the hundreds of sea lions who’ve stranded along the California coast, likely because warming waters have disrupted their food chain. She’s now recovered from an eye injury and gained 25 pounds. “The thing I want everybody to know about Marina is she was a feisty, sassy animal, and part of the success of her rehabilitation was that effort and that energy Marina put forth,” said SeaWorld’s Jody Westberg in a video about the release. Chef Bernard Guillas called “Ciao, ciao!” as Marina slid off the boat. He praised her rescuers, saying, “Look at that. She’s back in the ocean, in the big blue, and she’s going to enjoy her life now.” — Read it from Inside Edition via Yahoo
WWF conservationists announced Wednesday that the Indochinese tigers who were once prevalent in the forests of Cambodia are now “functionally extinct,” because there are no breeding populations left there. Their numbers have dropped thanks to intense poaching of the tigers and their prey. The WWF said the last time a tiger was spotted on camera there was in 2007. The Cambodian government plans to reintroduce tigers into a protected area to the far east of the country. — Read it at Time
Researchers at the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research are optimistic that the birth of an adorable southern white rhino this week may be the result of a change in his mom’s diet. The scientists had investigated for eight years to determine why the species gave birth less in captivity than in the wild. They discovered the rhinos may be sensitive to compounds found in soy and alfalfa, which they are fed in zoos. Pregnant moms eating it could result in infertility issues for female calves. Two years after their diet was changed to limit those foods, two females successfully reproduced for the first time — including the newborn’s mom, Holly. “Holly showed no evidence of pregnancy for the past 10 years, despite breeding,” said the zoo’s Christopher Tubbs, Ph.D. “This successful birth gives us tremendous hope that diet changes can improve fertility in captive-born females of this species, which for decades have struggled to reproduce.” — Read it from the San Diego Zoo
The staff at the Dogs Trust Snetterton shelter in the U.K. are afraid Jasper has been overlooked by 2,000 potential new owners in the last six months for one reason: he’s always asleep when they visit. The beautiful 3-year-old Greyhound is apparently quite comfortable at the shelter. “We take in hundreds of dogs of all shapes and sizes but I have never met a dog who sleeps quite as much as Jasper,” said shelter spokeswoman Lara Murphy in a press release. “He is a real character and, when he is awake, is a sweet-natured, fun-loving, affectionate lad who adores people and playing games. Jasper is exceptionally handsome so it’s a bit of a shame he is often snoozing when he could be showing himself off to potential owners. He is a young happy, healthy dog who, like some people, just happens to really enjoy sleeping.” We’re with you, Jasper, and we’re crossing our fingers that you’ll soon find an owner who’ll be happy to have you curl up with them for a cozy nap! — Read it at the Huffington Post
The keepers at the U.K.’s Chester Zoo come up with a different theme each year to keep track of their Humboldt penguin chicks — and this year, they went with the names of popular British chips. So, Wotsit was the first to break out of its shell on Easter Sunday, followed over the next several days by Quaver, Frazzle and Cheeto. Both penguin parents will rear the chicks, who are expected to leave the nest in about eight weeks. “So far, our new arrivals are doing very, very well and so they won’t stay so small for long,” said keeper Anne Morris. “In the next few weeks we expect them to more than triple in size and weight!” — Read it from the Chester Zoo
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