Animals in the News

NYTIMES.COM

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In 2012, Mr. Speak Thunder drove a livestock trailer in a convoy from Yellowstone National Park that returned genetically pure bison to tribal land in northeastern Montana for the first time in 140 years. Mr. Speak Thunder, 32, is one of a growing number of younger Native Americans who are helping to restore native animals to tribal lands across the Northern Great Plains, in the Dakotas, Montana and parts of Nebraska.

They include people like Robert Goodman, an Oglala Lakota Sioux, who moved away from his reservation in the early 2000s and earned a degree in wildlife management. When he graduated in 2005, he could not find work in that field, so he took a job in construction in Rapid City, S.D.

Then he learned of work that would bring him home. The parks and recreation department of the Pine Ridge Reservation, where he grew up, needed someone to help restore rare native wildlife — including the swift fox, a small, tan wild dog revered for its cleverness. In 2009, Mr. Goodman held a six-pound transplant by its scruff and showed it by firelight to a circle of tribal elders, members of a reconvened warrior society that had disbanded when the foxes disappeared.

Photo

A black-footed ferret at Fort Belknap in 2013.CreditJonathan Proctor/Defenders of Wildlife

“I have never been that traditional,” said Mr. Goodman, 33, who released that fox and others into the wild after the ceremony. “But that was spiritual to me.”

For a native wildlife reintroduction to work, native habitat is needed, biologists say. On the Northern Great Plains, that habitat is the original grass, never sliced by a farmer’s plow.

Unplowed temperate grassland is the least protected large ecosystem on earth, according to the American Prairie Reserve, a nonprofit organization dedicated to grassland preservation. Tribes on America’s Northern Plains, however, have left their grasslands largely intact.

Read more at: NYTIMES.COM

 

From: http://www.wpxi.com/news/news/national/old-labrador-who-walked-30-miles-back-home-adopted/ngsfZ/

An elderly black Labrador retriever who once walked 30 miles to return to a home that did not want her has now been rescued by an heiress with a soft spot for animals.

Lady was adopted by a family in Sedan, Kansas, after her owner died in 2012. But she did not get along with smaller dogs that the family adopted, so she was taken to a shelter.

The mellow Lab was again adopted, this time by a woman who lived 30 miles from the previous family with the small dogs.  She grabbed headlines when she walked all 30 miles to get back to that family — a family that did not want to take her back.

At this point, the story becomes a fairy tale.

Helen Rich, the Wrigley chewing gum heiress,  recently lost her own senior black Labrador. She saw a Facebook post about Lady and decided to adopt her.

Rich sent her personal assistants Chet Ragsdale and Barbara DeCiocco on a private jet to Kansas to pick Lady up.

And where is Lady now? Sharing space at an 11,000-square foot home in Odessa, Fla., with five other dogs and several cats. With a spot right next to Rich.

“The dog will be right there where she is,” DiCioccio said. “We already have a bed for her.”  (tbo.com)


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