A North Carolina Animal Rescue Group Is Using Old Bras to Save Injured Turtles

Michael Martin, iStock/Getty Images Plus
Michael Martin, iStock/Getty Images Plus

Do you have a pile of old bras sitting in a dust-gathering dresser drawer or forgotten bin in the back of your closet? They could save a turtle’s life.

Last week, a North Carolina animal rescue center posted on Facebook requesting that people donate bras—specifically, just the clasps on bras—for them to use in mending cracked turtle shells.

Here’s how it works: You glue the broken shell back together, then glue the bra clasps to either side of the crack, and then wind wire around the clasps to ensure that the shell is held in place. It's like setting a human bone, Jennifer Gordon, director of Carolina Waterfowl Rescue, told CNN. After the shell heals, the turtle is released back into the wild with nothing but a great story to tell.


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Carolina Waterfowl Rescue provides aid to quite a few birds; according to its website, it helps over 1000 every year, covering nearly 40 different species. It also supports pigs, opossums, owls, and more.

Turtles, though, are especially susceptible to injury around this time of year, since they’re venturing beyond the safety of their normal wetlands habitats to lay their eggs along shorelines or to escape heavy rains. Also, warmer weather means more dogs, lawn mowers, and cars—perhaps the most dangerous foe of all.

According to CNN, CWR is a friend to all shapes and sizes of the beloved slow-and-steady reptiles, from 14-inch common snapping turtles to the much smaller eastern box turtle, which can fit in your hand.

Responses to the call for clasps have been so numerous that the rescue center has pledged to donate any still-usable bras to Common Heart, a nearby thrift store and food pantry, and they’re now asking for donations of $3 or $5 in lieu of sending the clasps themselves.

[h/t CNN]

Meet LiLou: The World's First Airport Therapy Pig

Kseniia Derzhavina/iStock via Getty Images
Kseniia Derzhavina/iStock via Getty Images

There's a new reason to get to the airport early—you might run into a therapy pig who's there to make your trip a little easier. As Reuters reports, LiLou the Juliana pig is a member of San Francisco International Airport's "Wag Brigade," a therapy animal program designed to ease stress and anxiety in travelers.

Aside from her snout and potbelly, LiLou can be recognized by her captain's hat and red "hoof" polish. She spends the day with guests who are happy to take a break from the pressures of traveling. She might comfort them by posing for a selfie, playing a song on her toy keyboard, or offering them a head to pet.

After bringing joy to people's day, LiLou goes home to her San Francisco apartment where she lives with her owner, Tatyana Danilova. In her free time, she goes on daily walks and snacks on organic vegetables. She even has her own Instagram account.

Airports around the world are embracing the benefits therapy animals can bring to customers. The Wag Brigade program at San Francisco includes a number of dogs, and earlier this year, the Aberdeen Airport in Scotland debuted its own "canine crew" of dogs trained to make travelers feel safe and happy. Therapy miniature horses have even been used at an airport in Kentucky. According to the San Francisco Airport, LiLiou is the world's first airport therapy pig.

To see LiLou turn on the charm, check out the video below.

[h/t Reuters]

Sssspectacular: Tree Snakes in Australia Can Actually Jump

sirichai_raksue/iStock via Getty Images
sirichai_raksue/iStock via Getty Images

Ophidiophobia, or fear of snakes, is common among humans. We avoid snakes in the wild, have nightmares about snakes at night, and recoil at snakes on television. We might even be born with the aversion. When researchers showed babies photos of snakes and spiders, their tiny pupils dilated, indicating an arousal response to these ancestral threats.

If you really want to scare a baby, show them footage of an Australian tree snake. Thanks to researchers at Virginia Tech, we now know these non-venomous snakes of the genus Dendrelaphis can become airborne, propelling themselves around treetops like sentient Silly String.

That’s Dendrelaphis pictus, which was caught zipping through the air in 2010. After looking at footage previously filmed by her advisor Jake Socha, Virginia Tech Ph.D. candidate Michelle Graham headed for Australia and built a kind of American Ninja Warrior course for snakes out of PVC piping and tree branches. Graham observed that the snakes tend to spot their landing target, then spring upward. The momentum gets them across gaps that would otherwise not be practical to cross.

Graham next plans to investigate why snakes feel compelled to jump. They might feel a need to escape, or continue moving, or do it because they can. Two scientific papers due in 2020 could provide answers.

Dendrelaphis isn’t the only kind of snake with propulsive capabilities. The Chrysopelea genus includes five species found in Southeast Asia and China, among other places, that can glide through the air.

[h/t National Geographic]

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