Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Odd little ends...

It's not terribly often I can say I was inspired by a pink grasshopper. No, I'm not talking about an "adult beverage" or a character in a children's book. Daniel Tate, an English schoolboy on an outing with his great-grandfather, spotted a common grasshopper who was born a little special. The 11 year-old boy was looking for grasshoppers at a wildlife event last week at Seaton Marshes Local Nature Reserve and at first thought he spotted a flower. He changed his tune when that flower hopped. The Yahoo! article also has photos of other pink insects found in nature. I'm not a bug-lover, but the pics are pretty cool.

Today's "weird but true" theme pretty much unspooled from there. posted a feature on its green technology page about the Chevrolet Equinox. I know absolutely nothing about cars. I can tell you the make and model of my car, but when one of my male friends pause in mid-sentence to drool over a passing vehicle, I'm at a loss. However, Chevy's hydrogen-fueled test car recently reached its 1,000,000th mile driven. Nearly 5000 everyday people have driven more than 100 pollution-free Equinoxes in the past 25 months, and many report they cannot tell a fuel cell car from a gas-fueled one. The only thing emitted from these "green" cars is a wisp of water vapor out the tailpipe. Once they start putting hydrogen fuel stations in more than 70 places in the US, sign me up.

Anything that helps shelter dogs I'm in favor of, as I'm sure you've all glommed onto through this blog if not by impassioned soap box speeches by yours truly. The San Francisco Chronicle's City Brights blog by Ken White highlighted the organization Working Dogs for Conservation, a Montana-based group utilizing some of nature's best sniffers in conservation efforts. Many dogs are turned over to shelters because they are too active for families (doing research on breeds before adopting or buying would be the smart option here, but do not even get me started...). Dr. Megan Parker and her research team find uber-focused dogs in shelters and train them to help her and her team in conservation efforts. The dogs are minimally invasive to nature and excellent and exuberant trackers. Seven of the nine dogs working for the WDC are rescues, and mind you, these are the dogs that are usually unadoptable, labeled "out of control," "obsessively active," and "crazy."

(Photo courtesy of APEX and Yahoo!)

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