Pesticides put bumblebee colonies at risk of failure
2012-10-21 19:00:16 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
OSLO: Pesticides used in farming are also killing worker bumblebees and damaging their ability to gather food, meaning colonies that are vital for plant pollination are more likely to fail when they are used, a study showed on Sunday.
The United Nations has estimated that a third of all plant-based foods eaten by people depend on bee pollination and scientists have been baffled by plumme...
Dubai plans 24-hour shopping for Eid
2012-10-17 22:57:09 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
DUBAI: In a city where shopping and spending is a favourite pastime, Dubai's malls will open round-the-clock for three consecutive weekends from Thursday as part of the upcoming Eid holiday.
The extended hours will apply to all shops and most food and entertainment outlets within the city's malls and cater for an expected influx of tourists over the Eid al-Adha festivities starting Octob...
New planet discovered in Earth's back yard
2012-10-17 20:40:31 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
LONDON/CAPE CANAVERAL: Astronomers have found a new planet, the closest yet outside our solar system and just an astronomical stone's throw away at four light years, raising the chances of finding a habitable planet in Earth's neighbourhood.
Researchers say the new planet is too close to its sun to support known forms of life, w ith a surface temperature estimated at 1,200 degrees Celsiu...
Goebbels love letters, fiction go to auction
2012-09-24 23:22:30 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
NEW YORK: Poems, love letters and works of fiction written by Joseph Goebbels before he became Adolf Hitler's propaganda chief went on sale this week near New York.
Alexander Historical Auctions described the archive of Goebbels' pre-war literary efforts as "the most important cache of World War II autographs to ever become available for sale."
The collection, which is said to be in perfect...
Baby panda not crushed by mother: zoo
2012-09-24 22:19:52 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: The body of the week-old baby panda that died suddenly here Sunday showed no sign of trauma, meaning it was not crushed by its mother, the Washington National Zoo said Monday
Keepers and volunteers realized something was wrong when they heard sounds of distress from the cub's mother, Mei Xiang, Sunday morning, the zoo said in a statement.
An autopsy found that the giant panda cu...
Giant panda cub dies at US National Zoo
2012-09-23 22:32:02 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: The giant panda cub born at the National Zoo just one week ago died on Sunday, zoo officials said.
While the exact cause of the baby panda's death is yet to be determined, zoo officials said the cub, which weighed just under 100 grams (about 3.5 ounces), was in good body condition and that there were no outward signs of trauma or infection.
The cub's death was discovered Sunday ...
Chance of saving most coral reefs is dwindling: study
2012-09-16 21:01:29 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
LONDON: The chance to save the world's coral reefs from damage caused by climate change is dwindling as man-made greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise, scientists said in a study released on Sunday.
Around 70 percent of corals are expected to suffer from long-term degradation by 2030, even if strict emission cuts are enforced, according to the study.
"The window of opportunity to preser...
Tiger kills keeper at Germany's Cologne zoo
2012-08-25 21:15:11 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
BERLIN: A Siberian tiger attacked and killed a female keeper at Germany's Cologne zoo on Saturday, the organisation said.
A gate holding the male tiger in a secure part of his enclosure was left open, allowing 'Altai' to walk through to another area then jump on the woman and maul and bite her, said the zoo's spokesman.
Zoo director Theo Pagel shot Altai dead before he could do any further ...
Sally Ride, first US woman in space dead at 61
2012-07-23 22:15:39 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: Sally Ride, the first US woman to fly in space, died on Monday after a 17-month battle with pancreatic cancer, her foundation announced. She was 61.
Ride first launched into space in 1983 aboard the Challenger shuttle, on the seventh mission of US space shuttle program.
In a statement, US President Barack Obama called her a "national hero and a powerful role model," and a woman ...
New feat awaits Niagara Falls high-wire walker
2012-07-19 21:26:31 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
NEW YORK: A US high-wire artist who crossed Niagara Falls in June is to attempt a new feat over a New Jersey beach, but this time shedding the safety harness that caused some to belittle his previous stunt.
Nik Wallenda's latest challenge, set for August 9, is to walk 1,500 feet (450 meters) some 100 feet (30 meters) above an Atlantic City beach in less than 30 minutes.
In a highly-publiciz...
Sleeping Australian teen in dingo incident
2012-07-18 22:27:12 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
SYDNEY: An Australian teenager told Wednesday of her sleeping bag being torn off by a dingo as she slept at a campsite, weeks after a landmark ruling that a baby was snatched in 1980 by one of the wild dogs.
Rebecca Robinson, 13, was sleeping on a mattress under a caravan awning at the Aurora Kakadu Lodge, some 250 kilometres (155 miles) from the northern city of Darwin, on Sunday when she was...
Tropical butterfly discovered in Quebec a sign of warming
2012-07-16 19:23:33 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
MONTREAL: Caterpillars belonging to a species of butterfly previously unknown as far north as Canada have been discovered in Montreal, in a sign that this country's cool climate is warming, researchers said Monday.
The city's botanical garden and insectarium said the giant swallowtail butterflies (Papilio cresphontes Cramer) were recently found for the first time on a prickly ash plant there.
Watergate apartment finds buyer for record $3.1mn
2012-07-09 23:03:33 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: An apartment in the Watergate complex, best known for the break-in that brought down president Richard Nixon in the 1970s, has sold for a record $3.1 million, the Washington Post reported Monday.
Tech entrepreneur John Lee bought the three-bedroom, 3,700 square foot (345 square meter) unit overlooking the Potomac River to complement his main home in an outer Washington suburb, the ...
S.African surfer survives shark attack
2012-07-06 20:27:16 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
JOHANNESBURG: A South African surfer survived an attack by a shark measuring up to 15-foot at a popular beach in the south of the country on Friday, rescuers said.
Jacque Mostert, 29, was attacked and injured while he was surfing during a holiday in Stilbaai in Western Cape province, Rico Menezies of the National Sea Rescue Institute said in a statement.
"He was surfing with friends and his...
Heritage city Seville's skyscraper rattles UNESCO
2012-07-04 20:57:09 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
MADRID: UN cultural body UNESCO has warned Seville not to endanger its World Heritage status by building skyscrapers in its historic centre after a controversial tower nearly stripped the Spanish city of its title.
Seville managed to irritate UNESCO by constructing a 178-metre (584-feet) high tower, designed by architect Cesar Pelli, just a few hundred metres (yards) from the city's Giralda, a...
Lifeguard in Florida fired after saving drowning man
2012-07-04 20:27:20 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: A young lifeguard in Florida has lost his job after rescuing a drowning man in a section of beach he was not assigned to patrol, local news media reported Wednesday.
Tomas Lopez, 21, was manning his post on Hallandale Beach, north of Miami, on Monday afternoon when a beach-goer alerted him to a swimmer struggling in an "unprotected" part of the beach.
"It was a long run, but som...
Marathon swimmer fails to complete Cuba: US journey
2012-07-02 00:29:59 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
KEY WEST: Marathon swimmer Penny Palfrey, who failed on Sunday to complete a record breaking 103-mile (166-km) swim from Cuba to the United States, was bested by mighty Gulf Stream currents, her husband said.
Chris Palfrey, a long-distance swimmer himself, said the tricky currents were all that blocked his wife's bid to become the first marathoner to make the solo crossing through the treacher...
US experts predict higher sea level rise: study
2012-06-22 20:05:09 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: Global sea levels could rise two to three times higher over the next century than previously estimated, according to a study released Friday by the US National Research Council.
A committee of experts evaluated that latest UN estimates and updated them with new data on polar ice-cap melting that is believed to be speeding up sea level rise around the world.
By 2100, the NRC esti...
Rare rhino birth expected soon in Indonesia
2012-06-22 20:01:50 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
WASHINGTON: A pregnant Sumatran rhinoceros is expected to give birth soon at a sanctuary in Indonesia, in a rare event that has only happened three times in the last century, experts said Friday.
"It could be any day now," said Bill Konstant, program officer at the US-based International Rhino Foundation, which has been working with veterinarians to support the pregnancy of Ratu, a 12-year-old...
Thousands of shellfish found dead in Peru
2012-05-25 22:30:19 GMT : (Arts & Leisure/Travel)
LIMA: Thousands of crustaceans were found dead off the coast of Lima following the mystery mass death of dolphins and pelicans, the Peruvian Navy said Friday.
The cause of death is under investigation, said Industry and Fishing Minister Gladys Triveno, warning that "it would be premature to give a reason for this phenomenon."
The Navy said it presented a report on the find to the Agency of ...