Singapore haze hits record high from Indonesia fires. “A senior official in the Indonesian president’s office said fires had been spotted on land owned by 32 companies in the region, some of them based in Malaysia and Singapore. The fires are caused by illegal slash-and-burn land clearance in Sumatra, to the west of Singapore. One of the Malaysian companies named by the Indonesian presidential official denied that it was burning forest to clear land, but said some small farmers operating on its property were doing so. Palm oil giant Sime Darby said in a statement that it was strictly following its zero-burning policy throughout its operations, but that it could not control the activities of local growers farming on its concession area. ” Sime Darby is a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).
Climate to send more animal traffic to these 6 spots. “The southeastern US and five other regions could be major routes for mammals, birds, and amphibians on their way to cooler environments in a warming world. Other areas that could see pronounced animal movements are northeastern North America, including around the Great Lakes and north into Canada; southeastern Brazil, home to both the species-rich Atlantic Forest and major cities such as Sao Paulo with its 11 million residents; and the Amazon Basin.”
Bears found in Ridgewood likely from same litter, animal control says. “The two yearling bears who caused a stir wandering into Ridgewood over the past few days were likely from the same litter, Kim Nangle, manager for Tyco Animal Control, said. They were likely displaced by their mother so she could mate again, Nangle said, traveling south and becoming separated near Ridgewood. However they got to Ridgewood, they both ended up the same way: tranquilized and shipped back up north to less populated areas. Very few bears came into the area in 2012, Nangle said, due to a 2011 hunt that killed 469 bears. The hunt this past winter was much slower, with just 287 bears killed. The hunt is expected to continue for a fourth straight year. The state Division of Fish and Wildlife has it scheduled for Dec. 9 through 14. ‘Unfortunately, that’s the only way to cull our numbers is with the hunting,’ she said.”
Animal rights group wants to ban carriage horses in Old Sacramento. “‘This is inherently an inhumane environment for horses,’ said Kim Flaherty, a Bay Area activist leading the Old Sacramento campaign. ‘We understand that the city is trying to capture a historical ambience. But seeing horses working in these conditions is very troubling to me.’ ‘The (city) code could use some tweaks,’ said district spokeswoman Liz Brenner. ‘We want to do the right thing, offer the horses an additional measure of comfort,’ including more shade and additional breaks. But Brenner ruled out the idea of banning the carriages altogether. ‘Over my dead body,’ she said. ‘I won’t let it happen.’ ‘The public loves these horses,’ Brenner said. ‘They are absolutely part of the ambiance of Old Sacramento.’ The city code states that the animals should not work when a thermometer placed at street level exceeds 100 degrees. But the thermometer used to gauge temperatures in the district is more than 13 feet from the ground, under the shade of a balcony, Flaherty said.”
Photo credit: Madison Guy via Flickr