Author: emilyturner0007

Weekly Story: Plastic in the Ocean Dangerously Threats Marine Wildlife

Sea turtle with plastic in its mouth

Imagine you are a sea turtle, swimming around the ocean floor. You’re starving, and that little clear thing over there looks just like your regular diet, but it isn’t. When you keep on eating these pieces, you won’t have room for anything else to eat. So, what are those little pieces? It turns out, and those small pieces are plastic, plastic that can float around the ocean for centuries. All types of marine animals eat these little pieces that will get sick and even die. But, how did the plastic get there?

Most Americans do recycle, and although it helps, it’s not enough. You see, when you recycle, very little of what you throw away is reused. It turns up in landfills, then blown into the ocean. Mackenzie Carro explains, “Many creatures accidentally eat plastic, thinking it is food. With stomachs full of plastic and no room for real food, these animals can starve. Other animals can get dangerously tangled in plastic 6-pack drink holders or suffocate inside plastic bags” (Carro, 2020). Because marine animals are becoming sick or even dying from eating plastic, this is endangering species that disrupts the food chain and, ultimately, negatively affects the ocean ecosystem.

Plastic that ends up in the ocean does not disappear. Instead, it is broken down by the sun, heat, and water into tiny pieces known as microplastics, which are dangerous for ocean wildlife. Mackenzie Carro states, “Anna also learned that microplastics are very difficult to get rid of. They are often too small for humans to spot easily. What’s more, algae can grow on microplastics, which makes them blend in with other particles in the ocean. This is what makes microplastics dangerous for marine animals, many of which get sick or even die from” (Carro, 2020). Overall, when we throw things away like plastic, some is recycled, some sit with no place to go. Then toxins are released, which harm plants and animals, and trash on beaches and lakes also is very harmful to the environment. You can help by replacing plastic forks and spoons and straws with metal, reusable ones. Use cloth napkins to dry your hands, use reusable containers, and choose refillable water bottles instead of a disposable water bottle. If we all take these steps, we will have a better environment for us and the beautiful animals around us.

Weekly Story: During the Coronavirus Outbreak Tons of Animals Are Forced to the Streets

Puppies left abandoned on streets in Wuhan, China

Most people are aware that the coronavirus outbreak is a fast-moving virus with growing numbers by the hour. Over 8,700 people are infected and over 160 are dead in the U.S alone. While we are stocking up on toilet paper and canned food, we don’t realize that there are other lives at stake.

All over China, there are pet lovers. With the largest dog and cat population of 188 million, they have more pets than the U.S does. Like any other city home to animals, there are abandoned cats and dogs roaming the streets. While this issue usually is partly under control in China, since the outbreak, it’s not been the same.

With so many people in China with pets, when an owner falls sick from coronavirus, they go into quarantine with no choice but to leave their pets behind. This creates a massive problem for volunteers because while abandoned animals before the outbreak were hard to control and feed, adding more animals to the situation leaves many starving to death. Overall, by adopting or fostering, you can give these animals a second chance. If unable to foster or adopt, you can donate money to provide these animals food and shelter, which can be critical to the line of life and death. Remember to always look into adopting before going to a breeder. You’ll always have a good feeling knowingly you saved a life. If there were fewer breeders in the world, we wouldn’t have a pet overpopulation, which is a big part of this problem. Don’t get a dog if you aren’t ready, because we can’t afford to have more pets ending up on the streets. I will soon be making a quiz to see if you are ready for a pet.

Weekly Story: On the French Island of Corsica, the ‘Cat-Fox’ found recently may be a new species

Recently, a mammal with stripes on the front legs, and dark stripes on the back legs was spotted on the French Island of Corsica. It resembled a domestic cat in some ways, like it’s wide ears, short whiskers, and developed canine teeth. What makes this possibly new species interesting is it’s dense, silky coat, repellent to fleas, lice and even ticks.

You might be thinking about why it’s referred to as a ‘Cat-Fox’. It has the fox after cat in it’s temporary name because of their size in contrast to a foxes size is very similar. The Cat-Fox name is also used because of it’s large bushy tail, just like a foxes’. Pierce Benedetti, chief environmental technician of the National Hunting and Wildlife Office stated,”We believe that it’s a wild natural species which was known but not scientifically identified because it’s an extremely inconspicuous animal with nocturnal habits.” To sum it up, this interesting mammal could be the next new species.

Weekly Story: Gray Whales Washing up on the Pacific Coast

Did you know that more than 60 gray whales have washed up on the Pacific Coast? That’s not all, this problem has started from the beginning of the year. Why has this been happening?

Well, before we get there, we need more information on this problem. To start off, on Sunday, the Seaside Aquarium posted, “A 23 foot female gray whale washed ashore just south of the Sunset Beach approach Friday afternoon.” The post also stated, “A necropsy was performed but nothing too telling was found.” Scientists have pointed out that whales can provide environmental quality indicators. It means that whales can tell us a lot about what’s happening in the ocean. In fact, a recent post nearly solving this case was on facebook, it explained how whales could be exhausting their energy this year before they can reach the Arctic to resume feeding. This theory could be the answer, although it has not been confirmed, this could be an answer to this mystery.

Adopt a Pet, don’t Shop for One

 Adopt Don’t Shop

 

           Each year 2.7 million innocent cats and dogs are euthanized, simply, because too little people consider adoption rather than buying from a breeder. Shelters are constantly facing overcrowding because too many pets are being abandoned and found in terrible conditions roaming the streets. It is crucial that you get a shelter pet rather than a breeded pet.

In the first place, you aren’t just saving one, but two animals when you adopt. One pet freed to a new home, and the other to take its place while the money goes towards a good cause, saving more animal’s lives by giving them a place to stay in a good environment until they are adopted and brought home. On the other hand, buying from a breeder is supporting cruel puppy mills. According to the ASPCA, “Most shelter pets wound up abandoned or in shelters because of a human’s problem, not because the animal did anything wrong.” Additionally, when you adopt you are giving an animal a second chance, also helping it forget whatever trauma it went through when they were young. According to Lisa Fontaine of the Humane Society, “Shelter animals aren’t any more likely to be flawed in some way than pets obtained from breeders.”

\After all, adopting saves lives, and they are just as good as any other pet.

Secondly, you are saving tons of money and getting a good deal when you adopt. For instance, shelters charge adoptions fees, but considering legit pet veterinary costs, adoption can often save pet owners some serious money. To bring to light, there are more shelters than breeders for a reason. Even though 10,000 cruel puppy mills still stand, we can make a change with a single act. In another case, shelters often include vaccinations, microchipping, spay and neutering in the adoption fee, still costing less than breeders charge. Also, shelters have plenty of workers and assistants that can help you with any of your questions or concerns. Therefore, adopting should be your first choice for multiple reasons.

Although adoption should be your first choice, many argue about behavioral issues because of trauma when they were young. All things considered, a pet you adopt is more likely to be grateful than aggressive. Initially, many argue that pets at shelters aren’t purebred or “good enough”. Also, many people assume most of the pets at shelters are seniors or adults with health problems. Even though people say this is a reason not to adopt. Although, what they don’t realize is that 75% of animals in shelters are purebred and a selection of age and size.

To sum it up, even if you can’t get a pet, encourage others to adopt. You can also volunteer, foster, and attend local fundraisers. Donate money, food, toys as it all helps. We can’t let this huge problem keep going. Consider that 6.5 million dogs and cats enter shelters, 2.7 being killed in the U.S each year. Animals depend on us to take care of them, not to just abandon them. We can make a change. So at any chance you get, adopt, don’t buy from a breeder for many strong reasons that prove this point.

Related image
Works Cited

“Eight Reasons to Adopt-Not Buy”2019.peta.org.Web.March 2019

“Ten Reasons You Must Adopt from Shelters”2017.thisisinsider.com.March 2019

“Thirteen Signs to Think Twice About Adoption”2015.rd.com.Web.March 2019

“To Not Adopt-Is a Step in the Right path”  2018.blog.allpointsmarketing.com.Web.March 2019

“Top Reasons to Adopt”2018.www.humanesociety.org.Web.March 2019

“Why to Adopt Your Next Pet”2016.petsforpatriots.org.Web.March 2019

 

Gorillas

Habitat

There are many different types of Gorillas, although some of their most common habitats are in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Rwanda, Cameroon, Nigeria, Angola, and Gabon. 

Appearance

All Gorillas’ arms are longer than their legs, and sometimes walk on all four limbs, also known as “Knuckle Walking”. They can be a sort of grayish brown in color, but are more commonly a more blackish coat. Mountain Gorillas have thick long hair coats, Lowland Gorillas have shorter, more fine hair, and have no tail. They share similarities with humans like walking upright for a long period of time, and more developed brains.

Diet

An adult Gorilla can consume 40 pounds of vegetation per day. They rarely drink water because the plants they eat are mostly made up of water. They also eat fruits, and bananas are common in their habitats, so they tend to eat lots of them.

Birth & Growth

The young are called “Black Backs”, and there is typically only one baby born. When they are born, they weigh around 4 pounds, and learn to crawl at around 2 months. After 8 or 9 months they start to walk, once 3 years has passed, they become independent. 

 

 

 

Giraffes

Giraffe with kid

Habitat

Giraffes live in Savannah areas in Africa. Mostly Central, Eastern and Southern Africa. Where there are dense forests, open plains, tall trees in very arid lands. Places that  are very hot. There are about 97k individual giraffes living in the wild and some in zoos around the world, not just in Africa.

Diet

Giraffes are herbivores, that means they don’t eat meat and instead they mostly eat leaves and shoots. They have a long tongue for reaching tall trees for food. Giraffes spend most of their time eating. They also eat seeds, fruits, buds and twigs. They can go without drinking for weeks because of the juice from plants they eat.

Appearance

Giraffes have tan brown colored spots surrounded by white. They are the tallest land animals and can be from 16-18ft. tall. They have a long neck and long legs. When they are walking they step with two feet at a time on one side. They can gallop up to 35 miles per hour.

Birth & Growth

Giraffes have babies at 4-5 years old. Giraffes carry the babies for 15 months. The newborn giraffes are about 6 feet tall. A baby giraffes is called calf. The calf weighs around 130 – 150 pounds when born.

Polar Bears

polar

Habitat

Polar bears live in places like Alaska, Canada, Denmark, and Norway. There are around 25,000- 40,000 polar bears in the world. Countries that these polar bears live in have banned hunting animals for their skin or fur, but it still happens. Humans are the only predators to the polar bears.

Diet

Polar bears mostly eat seals because there aren’t many other animals in that area. Seals have a lot of Vitamin A in their bodies, so it’s good for the polar bears. When polar bears hunt, they hide under a seal’s home. When the seals come back the polar bear will bite the seal’s neck.

Appearance

A male will grow 10ft. and will weigh around 1,400lbs. Female polar bears on the other hand, are a lot smaller. Females are around 7ft. and 650 lbs. Polar bears live for around 25 years. Their fur is very oily and water repellent. Underneath their fur is black to attract sun, and keep the polar bear warm. They have a 4 inch layer of fat also to keep them warm. Polar bears have slightly webbed feet to hep them swim.

Birth and Growth

When polar bears have babies they are normally around 4-5 years old. They have 2 cubs, in a cave. Polar babies are much smaller than human babies. Polar bear babies weigh a little more than a pound, and about the size of a squirrel.