Category: Animals (page 1 of 2)

Sundry items about a favourite topic of mine: our relationship with animals

The Ugly Duckling Diva

A Fairy Tale Comes True

Sally was the second to be born. Her beautiful sister, Sam, emerged on time, perfect in every respect. Sally’s journey was harder, she arrived all battered and bruised. Sally was very large and, it’s true to say, very ugly.  People tended to smile at Sam and sigh at Sally.

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Behind Those Bars

I’ve recently been to an animal sanctuary in Thailand and a family outing to Dudley Zoo. Comparing the two experiences has been fascinating and once more made me ask what zoos are for.

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The Other Side of Canada

I’d never seen a bear in the wild before, then all in one summer I saw three different types: Polar Bears, Grizzly Bears and Black Bears. Mind you, being in the right country did help. Continue reading

Drawing the Line – How I Felt about Going Fishing

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Recently I had the pleasure of spending a few days in the wilds of Scotland, celebrating a friend’s 50th birthday. One afternoon a group of us went out on a boat to see the scenery and hopefully spot some seals. Fishing was an added option. I found the experience quite thought-provoking. Continue reading

A Street Cat Named Bob: Film Review

bob-pic‘A Street Cat Named Bob’ is the film of the best-selling book (and its sequel). I’m a great cat lover and enjoyed the book, so going to see the film was a must. It’s fun and full of some lovely cat scenes, but the entertainment value comes at the expense of the book’s deeper meaning. Continue reading

The Vermin Revolt

J89A0415 There once was a land of rolling hills and valleys. At the top of the highest hill lived the King in a grand palace. Nearby, in a castle, lived a Count. His job was to count the King’s money which he kept locked in the castle cellars.

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Polar Perspectives

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We stood on the deck scanning the horizon. The long lens on my camera was heavy but I didn’t mind. I peered across the ice, willing it to come into view. Then I spotted it. A yellow blob. Yes, there! It was one of those moments I’ll never forget. I said to myself, ‘I’m actually here. In the Arctic. And I’ve just seen a polar bear.’ Continue reading

Jungle Book – Well Worth Another Look

Jungle Book 2016How many of us have fond memories of the 1967 Disney film animation of Jungle Book? Lots, I suspect. I certainly do. Even with my dreadful memory I can still conjure up images of Baloo performing ‘Bare Necessities’ and Kaa’s hypnotic ‘Trust in me’.  So when I heard there was a new version, part of me wondered: why? But as I love animals, another part of me couldn’t wait. I wasn’t disappointed. Continue reading

Costa Rica for Wonderful Wildlife Watching

Red Eyed Frog Iconic of Costa Rica Costa Rica certainly lives up to its reputation as THE place for conservation. On a recent trip I was delighted to see a fabulous selection of wildlife: monkeys, exotic birds, sloths, frogs, snakes, as well as iguanas and other prehistoric looking reptiles.

And take hundreds of photos – that is, until my camera broke down!

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Borneo : Beneath the Haze


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I hadn’t noticed the smog until the taxi driver mentioned it. We were on our way from Kuala Lumpur airport to the city for a night’s stay before continuing on to Borneo. One of my travelling companions asked if we would be passing any major sights, if so, would he point them out.  The driver’s reply was alarming.  It would be hard to see anything from a distance. The whole city was covered in a smoke haze. It had been like it for weeks.

He explained more. The haze happens every year. It drifts across from Indonesia; from Sumatra and the Kalimantan province of Borneo. It’s caused by ‘slashing and burning’ – a cheap way to clear land. Some farmers might adopt the technique but the finger of blame mainly points to the palm oil producers creating space for yet more plantations. Continue reading

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