'It came so close it sniffed his hoodie': Tourists reveal the terrifying moment a grizzly bear charged at them... and they didn't even flinch


Too close for comfort: The tourists had no option but to sit perfectly still as the bear investigated their presence

It must have sounded like the experience of a lifetime - an opportunity to observe Alaska's grizzly bears in the wild.
However, it could have very easily come to a grisly end after one of the bears charged at this group of tourists as they sat in camping chairs - and there was not a thing they could do about it.
The group of 10 had no option but to sit perfectly still as the fearsome bear bounded over to them before circling their camp and coming in for a closer inspection.
At one point the bear even sniffed the hood of one of the tourists as he sat in his chair.

Charge: This grizzly bear bolts through the water towards the tourists... and there's not a thing they can do about it

The hair-raising encounter happened as the sightseers visited the Katmai National Park in Alaska as part of a trip to observe the animals.
They were told they would be watching a group of grizzlies 'from a safe distance' as the bears fished in a river. However they were stunned when one of them broke loose and charged at them along the water's edge.
Sitting in camping chairs, the men and women had little choice but to stay perfectly still while the 40 stone bear came within inches of them. At one stage it even sniffed the hood of one of the group.
Their guide advised none of the party to jump up or ran away as that would have prompted the creature to go on the attack.

Ferocious: The bear's razor-sharp claws are seen as he breaks away from the main grizzly group and fearlessly approaches the invaders

Instead the bear circled the group several times before wandering off when it lost interest. Larry Griffith, 59, and wife Cindy, 57, were part of the group.
Mr Griffith, from New Mexico, U.S., said: 'There were eight others with us and we were allowed four hours in two different locations to view the bears.
'We had a safety class before hand about what to do if we encountered a bear.
'All the bears were catching fish when this particular bear circled our group several times, wanting us to leave his fishing spot. This was not supposed to happen.

Coming in for a closer look: The group were advised not to run away as it could have caused the bear to go on the attack

Backing off: The bear saunters away after deciding the group was not a threat, as some of the tourists capture the extraordinary moment on camera

'Our guide said he saw this as a bluff charge, trying to scare us, which he did!
'We were all in shock but were happy that no-one in our group jumped up, ran away or screamed for their lives.
'The bear actually smelled the hoodie of one of us, then walked behind us all within three feet.
'We were all frozen and I couldn't breathe. In the end the bear lost interest or got the message and left us alone.
'It was terrifying walking back through the grass to our boat-plane. I counted 30-40 different bears.'

'We were all frozen and I couldn't breathe': The defenceless group had to wait until the bear lost interest before they could get up and leave

Dangerous: The bear circled the group several times before wandering off

source: dailymail

Doggy paddle? I prefer MOGGY paddle: Cat caught on camera swimming in the sea


Taking a dip: The cat tentatively steps into the water ready for the swim ahead

They will normally do anything to avoid the water. However, not only has this cat learned how to swim, it seems to have perfected the doggy paddle.
This hilarious video shows a cat in Russia walking into the water and taking a dip with its owner.
It has since become an internet sensation after the video was uploaded to YouTube and went viral.

Moggy paddle: It launches itself into the water, seemingly unafraid of the water

Far from being afraid of the water, the cat voluntarily walks into it.
The footage shows the black and white moggie taking tentative steps from the shore into the water.
Encouraged by its owner, it starts to paddle, its tail trailing behind it on the water's surface.

Swimming buddies: The cat is joined by its owner and the pair swim alongside each other

It is then joined by the woman, who swims alongside her pet cat as the pair make their way toward some rocks.
The moggie shows no signs of distress throughout the short clip and seems relaxed after its dip.
Little is known about the cat, except that the footage was filmed in Russia.

Feline fine: The cat seems relaxed after its dip as it dries off in the sun

source: dailymail

The happy whistle that's a dolphin saying hello: Animal uses signature sounds to greet other pods


Greeting: One member of a pod will emit a unique high-pitched 'getting' while hundreds of feet away from another group - in an activity likened to people introducing themselves

Dolphins use signature whistles, or name calls, to introduce themselves, research shows. One member of a pod will emit its unique high-pitched ‘greeting’ while hundreds of feet away from another group.
The activity is likened to people introducing themselves by name – further proof of the marine mammals’ intelligence.
Researcher Vincent Janik said the second group of dolphins will respond to this greeting, and the pods merge before swimming off together.

Intelligence: The second group of dolphins will respond - and the pods will merge before swimming off together

Captive dolphins have long been known to produce signature whistles but little was known about their use in the wild, so Dr Janik decided to track dolphins swimming off the coast of St Andrews. Typically, as one group of dolphins approached another, one animal would let out a burst of whistles.
This would bring a response from the second group and the two would merge, before swimming off together.
Dr Janik believes the whistles were used as a greeting, rather than as a warning, as dolphins are not territorial and any merging of pods was friendly, rather than aggressive.
Also, when no whistling occurred, the two pods would simply swim past, without any attempt to join together. Normally, just one creature made the introductions.
Dr Janik, of St Andrews University’s sea mammal research unit, says it is possible this animal was some sort of leader.
Or, more likely, the other animals were able to glean extra information about the identity of the approaching pod by using their inbuilt sonar.
With visibility at less than three feet in the North Sea, simple visual identification is not an option at a distance.

source: dailymail

That's totally barking! Breeder welcomes 27 puppies after two of her dogs give birth in the same week


Group hug: The 27 puppies were born in the space on three days - a new record for their breeder

A German dog breeder has found herself with a wealth of puppies - after 27 were born in the space of three days.
Beatrice Oswald, from Aken, who has been breeding dogs since 2004, is now the owner of the large litter after two of her canines went into labour one after the other.
Such was the sheer volume of pups, that both mothers are struggling to produce enough milk to feed all of the bumper brood.

New arrivals: The tiny puppies are being bottle fed as their mothers are unable to produce enough milk to cater to the entire litter

Oswald's two-year-old dog Elfi of Tara was the first to give birth, producing 11 adorable puppies and soon after, three-and-a-half-year-old Anny Bonny yielded a litter of 16.
Beatrice has been relying on friends and volunteers to assist in the bottle feeding that has been ongoing around the clock.
She will continue to care for the puppies for the next few months until they are old enough to be sold.

Centre of attention: Whilst a group of siblings from one litter attempt to take a nap, one energetic pup clearly has other ideas

source: dailymail

Forget Homer Simpson and Jim Royle... Meet the Sloths, the new (and adorable) stars of lazy TV


Smile for the camera! The quirky and cute sloths are about to star in their own documentary

We are used to welcoming lazy, chubby sloths into our homes via the TV set.
Jim Royle manages to impart some life lessons from the comfort of his chair, Rab C Nesbitt amuses us with his unemployed, alcoholic life, and even Homer Simpson manages to have adventures despite wanting nothing more than his sofa and a Duff beer.
But now Meet the Sloths - a cheeky family of mammals predicted to become the new meerkats when their documentary launches next week.

What you looking at? The sloths will have to get used to stardom once their show goes out to UK audiences

These lovable tree-huggers live in the confines of a Costa Rican sanctuary and spend their days hanging off a climbing frame, or getting bathed by their human carers.
The documentary was the brain-child of Lucy Cooke, whose clips of sloths on YouTube were watched by six million people.
Meet the Sloths, which has already aired in the States, premiers on Animal Planet UK on Sunday.
On SlothVille.com, Lucy says she had her first encounter with sloths when she visited Aviarios, near Limon in Costa Rica, which is the world's only sloth orphanage.

Sloths of the past: Homer Simpson and Jim Royle have spent years entertaining us with their lazy ways

She said: 'I traveled 5,000 miles to a sleepy corner of Costa Rica to meet an animal I first saw on Youtube.
'I made my own little video about the sanctuary sloths, “Meet the Sloths”, which went viral within days.
'The video has now been watched by over six million people and gathered famous fans like Ashton Kutcher, Ricky Gervais and most recently Kristen Bell.'

A Simples life: Meerkats became a huge hit thanks to their cheeky adverts

The two-minute clip bought attention to the Sloth Sanctuary, founded by husband and wife team Luis and Judy Arroyo.
The couple, along with volunteers, teach visitors about the way of the Sloth, and passengers from passing cruise ships regularly make a stop at the sanctuary.
There they can help feed and clean the sloths, who usually arrive at the orphanage after being hit by cars or being electrocuted by overhead cables.

All grown up: The sloths started life in the orphanage, but are now flourishing as TV and web stars

Star of the show: Lucy Cooke with one of her lazy but adorable staff

source: dailymail

Prince William is 'appalled' after poachers butcher his friend's hand-reared rhino Max for his horn


Prince William has been left 'appalled' by the slaughter of his friend's rhino which was killed by poachers for his prized horn.
Endangered white rhinoceros Max was shot 17 times and had his horn hacked off by hunters in Kenya.
Despite rangers removing most of his horn as a protective measure against poachers, he was hunted for the small piece still remaining.
Six-year-old Max, who was featured in the documentary Last Chance To See, had been hand-reared by Ian Craig - the father of Prince William's ex-girlfriend Jecca.
Mr Craig owns the Lewa wildlife reserve in Kenya but the animal had been moved to the Ol Pejeta sanctuary after he reached adulthood, which is where the killing took place.

Shocked: The Duke of Cambridge was said to be 'appalled' at the 'senseless' killing

In 2001 the Duke of Cambridge spent six weeks volunteering at Mr Craig's conservation project and he met Max several times on later trips to Africa.
It was after his seeing Mr Craig's work with rhinos that Prince William became a patron of the Tusk Trust, which works to protect the animals.
A St James's Palace spokesman said: 'The Duke of Cambridge is appalled to hear about this senseless slaughter. He remains very concerned about rhino and elephant poaching and has asked Tusk Trust to keep him updated on this issue in Africa.'

Slaughtered: Max, who was hand-reared by Prince William's friend Ian Craig, was found shot and with his horn cut out

Butchered: Despite the fact that most of Max's prized horn had already been removed to protect him from poachers, he was killed for the remainder of it

Poachers kill rhino for their horns, which sell for £40,00 a kilo in Asia where it is wrongly believed to cure cancer.
Charlie Mayhew, co-founder of the Tusk Trust, said: 'Max's slaughter by poachers is a shocking illustration of what is now happening the length and breadth of Africa to meet the growing demand for rhino horn in China and Vietnam.
'The fact that this rhino had been hand reared at Lewa meant that many visitors to Lewa including our Royal Patron had the opportunity to get extremely close to him. It of course makes it all the more shocking and sad when you know the individual animal that has been poached.

Conservation work: Prince William with Tusk Trust co-founder Charlie Mayhew in the making of the 2001 television programme Prince William's Africa

'When Max grew up, he was moved to another sanctuary where he was killed.
'The Prince has taken a very close interest in the escalation of rhino and elephant poaching and it is something he feels passionate about trying to halt this illegal trade.'
Mr Mayhew added that the problem of rhino-poaching was now 'pan-Africa' and said that one reserve he spent time at in Zimbabwe had lost six rhinos so far this year.

Growing problem: Rhino-poaching is now 'pan-Africa' and one reserve in Zimbabwe has lost six rhinos so far this year

He said: 'Last year in South Africa alone they were losing on average a rhino every 20 hrs to poachers. This year South Africa has already lost more than 70.
'It is a real crisis and one that Tusk along with a number of other organisations is desperately trying to tackle. Last year Tusk invested substantial funds to help bolster security at rhino sanctuaries such as Lewa.'

Hand-reared: Max with a keeper before his shocking death

Six-year-old Max, had been hand-reared by Ian Craig, whose daughter Jecca Craig, left, is one of Prince William's ex-girlfriends

source: dailymail

Former Tarzan actor arrested for having two grown tigers and a panther in his home


Arrested: Former Tarzan actor Steve Sipek with a tiger at his home in Loxahatchee in 1985

A former actor who played Tarzan has been arrested and had two tigers and a black panther removed from his home after they were considered a danger to the public.
Steve Sipek was taken into custody after his licence to keep the dangerous wild animals was revoked by Florida wildlife officials.
Officials said the tigers and panther were removed from the property in Loxahatchee for safety reasons.

Movie star: Steve Sipek, whose stage name was Steve Hawkes, in the poster for Tarzan, left, and kissing one of the tiger cubs he acquired after Bobo was shot down, right.

Sipek was arrested on misdemeanor charges of possession of a Class 1 animal without a USDA permit and possession of a Class 1 animal as a pet.
The Croatian born actor appeared as Tarzan in a Spanish film called 'Tarzan in the Golden Grotto’.
During the making of a sequel ‘Tarzan and the Brown Prince’, a trained lion pulled Sipek from a fire on the set in Rainbow Springs, Florida.

Tame: Steve Sipek gives a bowl of milk to his 600-pound Bengal tiger, Bobo, who escaped his south Florida home and was shot multiple times

As a result Sipek vowed to protect big cats and has kept a number of the animals on his property.
He even boasted that he allowed the tigers to sleep with him in the house telling one interviewer: ‘When it's cold they are very warm to cuddle up to.’
Six years ago he was the subject of worldwide media coverage during a 26-hour hunt after a 600-pound tiger named Bobo escaped from his compound.
Bobo was found and shot five times with an AK-47 assault rifle by a wildlife officer.

source : dailymail

That’s one way to mow the lawns! Farmer allows his 'urban' sheep to graze among flats and houses


Wool-come guests: The sheep grazing among the flats and houses in Matson, Gloucestershire, yesterday

Mowing the lawn is never the most enjoyable of tasks.
But luckily for these residents, they have access to a constant supply of volunteers dedicated to the cause.
Happily munching away, these sheep have been allowed by the local farmer to permanently graze among the flats and houses in the quiet village of Matson in Gloucestershire.

Definitely not baa-d: The local farmer has allowed his flock to roam the village, which saves on the gardening

And they appear to have been warmly welcomed.
One fan, Mark Gale, said on his twicsy page: 'Say hello to Matson sheep who often wander round the estate looking for the best grass.'
In another comment on the Twitter Pics Engine site, he said: 'The Matson sheep on the green outside Matson shops. They've found yummy yummy grass.'
These villagers will no doubt be hoping they stay. Otherwise it's back to the lawnmower.

Feline fan: One of the village cats checks out the sheep's horticultural handiwork

source: dailymail

Is this the most bizarre art project ever? Taxidermy class teaches students how to stuff dead mice and pose them up 'as if they were humans'


How do I look? A student poses her taxidermied mouse in front of a miniature mirror in an anthropomorphic mouse taxidermy class in Brooklyn, New York

It's not a hobby for the faint of heart.
But Susan Jeiven's class on anthropomorphic taxidermy has been sold out since December.
The one-day workshop, which teaches students how to stuff dead mice and pose them up as if they were humans, is becoming a popular pastime in New York.
White-haired mice styled in tutus and polka dot hair bows; their spindly paws strumming miniature guitars - even reading the New York Times - were photographed in Ms Jeiven's class last Tuesday.

Rocker mouse: The four-hour class is for people to learn the art of anthropomorphic taxidermy - the practice of mounting and displaying taxidermied animals as if they were humans

An educator and tattoo artist, she begins the four-hour lesson handing out the lifeless little creatures, having sucked out their blood with a syringe beforehand. A statement on the class website warns only feeder mice are used for the arts and crafts session.
Students gather around at the Observatory art and events space in Gowanus, Brooklyn as she takes them through each step of the process, from the first slice to the final stitch.

In today's news: Students pose their mice with tongues out and hair bows - and even a miniature front page of the New York Times

Curious: A mouse holds a miniature wine glass, another poses in a teeny tiny tutu

Masterpiece: Student Sara Stryjewski takes an admiring look at her taxidermied mouse

But strange or morbid as it might seem to some, anthropomorphic taxidermy – the practice of mounting and displaying taxidermied animals as if they were humans or engaged in human activities – has a long and storied history, beginning with the most privileged classes.
It was a popular art form during the Victorian and Edwardian eras; the best known practitioner of the art form being British taxidermist Walter Potter, whose works included The Kitten Wedding and The Kitten Tea Party, which the mind immediately wants to imagine.
An ad for the class promises to help students to create their own museum of curiosities.

Taxidermist: Tattoo artist and educator Susan Jeiven holds a dead mouse during her Anthropomorphic Mouse Taxidermy Class on February 21

Gather 'round! Students look on as Ms Jeiven, right, demonstrates how to slice open her art project

Gather 'round! Students look on as Ms Jeiven, right, demonstrates how to slice open her art project

Stuffing: With intense focus, students stuff their dead mice in class

Halfway there: Student Sara Stryjewski sews up her mouse

Final touches: Sara Stryjewski wipes her little guy clean after wrapping his paws around a miniature guitar

Ready to go: Student David Edelman shows off his incision during the anthropomorphic mouse taxidermy class

Morbid, sir: Student Josh Klausner eyeballs the camera as he nuzzles his new friend

We're about to begin: Ms Jeiven hands out dead mice to her eager students

'Each class member will leave at the end of the day with their own anthropomorphic taxidermied mouse,' the website exclaims.
For those daring enough to partake in the hobby, not to worry, no former taxidermy experience is required.
They only ask you don't bring your own dead animal. Fair enough.

source: dailymail