Understanding Some Basic Bear Terminology

Organised bear tours with an expert wildlife company are an excellent way to observe these magnificent animals in a safe and instructive manner. If you’re embarking on a tour with a qualified wildlife guide you might hear some unfamiliar terms, so before setting off, make sure to brush up on your bear vocabulary.

Adaptation – Adaptation is a biological process in which a species gradually becomes better suited to its environment. Like most plants and animals, bears have adapted to their individual environments, and have specialised features that help them make the best of their surroundings. The Polar Bear, for example, has evolved over thousands of years to adapt to its frozen surroundings with wide paws, thick blubber, and white fur.

Habitat – During bear tours, you are treading in the bear’s habitat, its natural ecological and environmental home. For example, deciduous and coniferous forests are the habitat of the Black Bear, and the edges of the Arctic ice pack are the habitat of Polar Bears.

Hide – On most bear tours, you will observe the animals from a hide (sometimes called a blind in North America). A hide is a shelter used to observe wildlife at close range. It is typically camouflaged so as to blend into the observed animal’s environment. A hide is somewhat reminiscent of a garden shed – normally wooden, with small openings or shutters built into the side to enable observation. Some hides, especially ones built for bird watching, are quite simple – perhaps only a wooden screen. Bear hides are much sturdier, with some even having toilets and beds inside for overnight stays.

Naturalist – Most bear tours will be led by a qualified naturalist, an expert in natural history fields such as zoology or botany. A naturalist will have spent many years studying plants and animals in the wild.

Range – A range is the geographic area normally inhabited by a species. For example, a Grizzly Bear’s range includes Alaska, south-western Canada, and parts of the north-western United States. A bear’s home range, on the other hand, is simply the area in which an individual animal lives, hunts, and mates during its life. The size of an animal’s home range is influenced by available food, mates, the time of year, and the age and size of the animal.

Subspecies – You might be overwhelmed by the huge and diverse bear family, but remember there are only eight species of bear: the Black Bear, the Brown Bear, the Polar Bear, the Asian Black Bear, the Sloth Bear, the Sun Bear, and the Giant Panda. All other bears, like the Grizzly Bear or Spirit Bear, are subspecies of an already extant species.

Territory – At times, some bears may show aggression to defend their territory, an area of its habitat over which it claims dominance. Territory may be defended for courtship and feeding rights, or, in the case of females, for breeding.

On bear tours, as with any wildlife tour, it’s helpful to have a little knowledge ahead of time. With the right facts and phrases, you can get a richer, more informative experience from observing these amazing animals.

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Adventures of a Masai Boy

The adventure life of most consultants and guides, especially those in tourism fraternity, commence as a joke during their tender ages. This is later developed into a hobby as they grow up doing almost the same type of activity that forms part of their life. Take an example of an orphaned Masai boy who grew up looking after cattle. In Kenya, Masai is one of the 42 ethnic tribes who have managed through thick and thin to maintain their traditional African culture. Their lives revolve around cattle rearing and migrating from one region to another in search of water and pasture for the large herds of cattle. Just imagine this young boy of 12 years for instance, alone in the thick bushes of Masai Mara, with all the risks of the black-maned lion or an aggressive rhino emerging from any direction!

Once in a while this has always happened, and a huge battle between the Masai boys has always come to pass. Surprisingly enough, the boys have always survived the fights with remarkable lion scratches that give them a right of passage from childhood to adulthood. After this memorable fight and a close encounter in this Kenya’s land of wildebeest migration, with a very high concentration of wild animals, the boy would definitely learn a lot about the animal’s behaviour and how to go about any sort of confrontation while in the bush.

Both the Kenya and Tanzania Masai communities share quite a number of similarities and follow the same cultural activities that make them different from the rest of the communities. The boys spend most of their days in the bush, feeding on wild fruits, dried meat and milk for their lunch. They know so many birds, that they can easily tell the species of different birds just by listening to their sounds.

Most of them actually track hyenas and wild dogs which sneak into their homes at night and attack their sheep and goats. Do you know how they do this? they look at the foot prints and sniff the leaves of shrubs that the wild animals might have walked through and this has always worked out for them perfectly well!!

They can make the best and the most sincere tour guides and safari consultants in the tourism field.

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Stiff – The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers – A Review

TREES are important to human beings as they provide shelter, fruits, firewood and sometimes its barks or roots can be used as medicine to heal certain diseases.

Most African countries including Zimbabwe should preserve the flora and faunas that are God-given. Despite having the ministry of Environment in African countries, less concern is placed on preserving trees for a healthy environment that can benefit both human beings and animals.

Wild birds can use trees as their inhabitancy as well as some of the reptiles to enrich the eco-system. This may also improve on the fertility of the soil through biodiversity, which is natural soil richness

Trees are good in our lives as their scent can produce health smells for breathing which may help in the circulation of oxygen within our red blood cells. Again if there are some hurricanes or whirlwind tree leaves can trap the strength of the wind.

African people across the world should be educated on maintaining a healthy environment that will have long term benefits to the members. It is our duty to document the names of the indigenous trees and pass the knowledge to the new generation as indigenous knowledge.

Due to the power outages like in Zimbabwe where electricity is a challenge, most people resort to cutting down trees for firewood a move that have destroyed most of our forestry. Both those in rural areas and urban centers cut down trees at an alarming rate as a source of energy a move that the government and the relevant ministry should control in order to prevent the disappearance of special local shrubs.

Urban farming in most high density and low-density suburbs in most parts of Zimbabwe should be condemned in order to keep our forestry balanced. Zimbabwe is currently experiencing rural-urban migration, with most people preferring to be in urban centers than in rural areas.

Tress are important to us as human beings as they improve on the rate of evapor-transpiration leading to a high rate of rainfall. It has been studied and discovered that areas with thick dense forestry experience high rainfalls fall.

Africans should be educated also to transplant some of these shrubs to their areas that a drought resistance. This is the education that if well implemented can assist local people to benefit from maintaining a healthy environment.

Thorn bushes which are favoured by goats and other wild animals especially are drought resistant and can be used by farmers in rural areas to fence their fields.

Trees can be used as a source of income for foreigners who may visit to conduct their studies. If host communities are well taught to take care of trees, this may be an inheritance that they can pass to the next generations in their area.

Zimbabwean curriculum at both primary, Secondary and tertiary institutions should teach pupils and students to value trees in their everyday lives.

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Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve The Land of The Tiger

Pristine forests, snaking rivers, marshy grasslands, steep cliffs and table top mounains creates an ecosystem that supports myriads of life forms. This creates a biodiversity that is worthy of being preserved in ever sinking space occupied by urban surroundings and the infrastructure development taking place at a rapid pace in India. Sal is the primary flora besides saaz, dhawa, beheda, harra, bel, jamun, palas, amaltas, tendu, tinsa, Indian ghost tree, garri, arjun, banyan, son pakad, peepul, pakri, wild mango, ber and many more. Bamboo is found on the slopes of the table top mountains and in the mixed forest zones.

For the green World Bandhavgarh is a jewel in the crown. It is home to one of the most endangered creature on Earth. The creature is without doubt the most beautiful or charismatic as well. It dwells in a complex surroundings absolutely at peace with oneself and thriving. Yes the species is locally thriving as a prime predator or tertiary carnivore. Being at top of the food chain it is the preserver of the ecosystem.

Humans lived here a long time back around two thousand years or more. The Gond tribes built a fort complex comprising of fort, courts, stables, caves, temples, and the zoomorphic idols of Lord Vishnu kept them spiritually connected to the creator. The last Maharajah ruled over the fort before deserting it for the better pastures at Rewa a township in Madhya Pradesh or Central India.

The Maharajah now is the tiger as it rules over this esoteric kingdom of animals and birds. There are plenty of birds, reptiles, insects and microorganisms that thrive here in wild abundance. This microcosm of life is a fragile web that support each other and the humans too.

The most sought after animal is the tiger and this preservation unit is meant to increase ts severely depleted population in India. The unit has seen remarkable success with numbers increasing every year. This breeding ground of big cats has been provided with intense protection and is subject to conservation measures some of which are natural while some depend upon human intervention.

A tiger conservation unit indirectly benefits all life forms and so is the case with Bandhavgarh. The population of herbivores like deer, antelopes, and primates which constitute the main prey of the big cats has substantially increased in the park. The park is home to more that two hundred fifty species of birds and about twenty plus species of reptiles or snakes. Python, cobra, krait, vipers, rat snake, tree snakes, racers, trinket snakes and keelbacks are often seen during the day.

Among the wild animals Nilgai, chinkara, barking deer, chital, sambar, langur, wild boars and bison are seen during the safaris. The park is divided into core area and the outer area called buffer. The core is the best breeding ground although the wild animals have spread to the buffer as well.

Popular for tourism Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve is ideal for photography. Many filmmakers and wildlife enthusiasts visit the reserve. But the largest number of visitors are the holiday makers.

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Pet Care is Important to Keep Your Pets Healthy

We find that many people love to keep pets. People who love animals always keep one at home. Cats and dogs are the two most common animals kept as pets. They are a source of companionship and the house is livened with the playful activities of the pet-animals. Having dogs as pets is preferred by a majority of the people, because dogs are loyal and they guard the house. Some people dread keeping animals because they either hate to take care of them, or they are scared of allergies from pets.

Apart from cats and dogs, there are so many other animals that are kept,like rabbits, fish, birds like parrots and love birds, guinea pig and sometimes monkey’s, spiders and even snakes. It is always better to avoid keeping wild animals as pets.

Although pets are considered as an addition responsibility, do you know that having pets has many health benefits? It has been found out that pets can reduce stress, reduce blood pressure and heart diseases, reduces loneliness, and will be there with you at tough times.

Whatever animal you keep as pet, the most important factor is that you have to take care of it. If you decide to keep an animal, you should also be willing to spend time and money to care for your pets. Caring for your pet should not be considered as a burden. Pets are like a part of your family and you should care for them just as you care for your children.

Make sure that your pet is given the proper diet. Avoid giving foodstuffs that are not suitable for your pet, like dogs are not be given chocolates. Your pets need your love and affection, so spend some time with your pet daily. Pet-sanitation training is also very important, so that they don’t dirty your house.

Your pet should always be kept clean. There are many types of bath and grooming accessories typically made for pets depending on their type and nature. There are pet shampoos and soaps and also pet combs to to prevent hair shedding and pet towels that absorb water faster.

It is very important that your pets remain healthy and free from diseases, and it is essential that you pet eats a balanced nutritious diet. The food your pets eat should contain carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, fat, proteins and water. If you have dogs or cats has pets. make sure you include raw meat in their daily diet. There are many types of nutritious dog foods available in the market.

Another very important thing is vaccination. Your pets should be vaccinated yearly to prevent them from contagious diseases. Ear mites are very common in cats and dogs and it can lead to infections. So a regular visit to the veterinarian is a must.

It is fun to have pets at home. Take proper care of them and they will always be your best friend.

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The Old Diviner

The Old diviner

My father had a geologist friend who knew of my interest in crystals and attractive pieces of coloured ore. He was going on a day’s journey into the bush with an old water diviner to site a new mine. My father asked if I could go with. I didn’t like the geologist, I felt that he considered me to be a burden, but I wanted to go deep into the bush. I wanted to see wild animals and find wonderful crystals. Most of all I wanted to see a hyena. The start of the journey was exciting, it was my type of bush – thick forests and open vleis (seeps) – but the dense forest soon petered out. Village charcoal burners had thinned the forests to make charcoal to sell across the border in the Congo. On the way there I was sitting straight, looking out for wildlife – but I saw nothing. The area had been hunted out long before. There were no crystals to be found either, and the geologist sarcastically said, ‘elephants and crystals don’t grow on trees sonny – anyway this bush is dead.’

Only a prig like you would say something like that, I thought. I had learnt the word prig from a Somerset Maugham story about an arrogant rubber plantation manager in Malaya. I liked both the sound and meaning of it. I could name a few prigs in Luanshya. The geologist was added to my prig list. The day was tedious and uneventful. On the way back I was tired. We had been out nine hours. I flopped back in my seat on the point of dragging my musings into a funk hole – I was told I was very good at that. The old water diviner, an Afrikaner who had been raised in the Karoo desert, the driest part of South Africa, must have sensed my gloom for he started telling me stories.

He told me he was able to find water with two copper rods, but that he could also divine with two green sticks. The geologist, who was actually doing the groundwork for a modern hydrological survey, respected the water diviner and his methods. They often yield interesting results, and had brought him along ‘out of interest’, so he said.

The diviner went on to tell me that contrary to what you see and think you know, Africa does not always deliver what you would expect. Even if you had prior knowledge as to what should happen – it might not happen. He said he used this way of thinking when he was divining for water. Underground water was never a given – Africa had many dry rivers both above and below the ground. He then fell into a preoccupied silence as he groped for his tobacco in a canvas bag under his seat. What was this wizened old man with tobacco stains on his teeth and fingers telling me? I guessed it was going to be interesting. Then he looked at me, and cleared his tarred throat; it was as if he was about to give a wedding speech. His pupils were glistening black diamonds in the wrinkled recesses of his eye sockets as my curiosity took a strong hold.

Out of earshot of the prig steering his rattling Land Rover, the diviner told me that in Africa, physical things could suddenly appear and then just as quickly disappear. ‘But they did nothing of the sort’ he said with a confident snort. ‘It was the way we were looking at them that made these strange things happen. Everything had an energy of its own which could never be lost – it merely altered its shape in time and space.’ Nodding in mused self-agreement, he then kept quiet for a good while. ‘Energies are like hyenas,’ he finally uttered. Wow! Now I really was all ears. I really wished I had a grandfather like him. With slow forceful words he continued, ‘An area could have no hyenas – then suddenly out of nowhere, one would appear.’ If someone in a remote village had been cursed; that night, without a single pug mark on the sandy floor of the village clearing, a hyena would appear at his door – even though hyenas had not been seen or heard of in the area for a very long time. ‘This was because the hyena had always been there,’ he said with a smug air of all-weather assurance.

True to form, the prig appeared oblivious to our important conversation, his mind doggedly fixed on the bumpy road that was pulling his vehicle to pieces. Once again I was sitting upright looking for hyenas in what remained of once thick Miombo woodlands while the old diviner spoke. My ears were pricked, my eyes peeled and my skin bristled – my bony little bum hardly made an indent on the green canvas of the backseat. Out there in the failing forest light I was hyper-sensitized to everything real and imaginary. I knew that hyenas were tribal omens for very important things in Africa, that’s why the Nyau and the Makishi only used effigies of hyenas in their most serious rituals. There was no logical reason for a hyena not to re-appear in the ‘dead’ bush, in the immediate here and now of our homeward journey in the prig’s rattle wagon.

The diviner continued: ‘Hyenas are a mystery to their fellow beasts. They can eject an aardwolf, an aardvark, or even a bad tempered honey badger from its burrow in an anthill, commandeer it, and with the collusion of the termites; do the strangest of things.’ Now I was nape hair erect and alert! My mind ran wild, throwing my thoughts all over the back seat and floor of the vehicle as it trundled down that remote dirt road. The light was receding fast and Mr ‘Cool’ the geologist put his foot on the accelerator of his ‘Landy.’ The diviner fell into another one of his tobacco chewing silences and I started to ruminate over things – I took as long as it took for him to suck on nicotine: spit spent tobacco, and pick his cracked lips free of the soggy shreds. Whatever it was that crept through his well-seasoned mind was worth waiting for.

‘Lion, in particular,’ he said, ‘despise hyenas, and will hunt them down and kill them – sometimes heartlessly killing hyena pups in the den so as to curb the number of hyenas in their territory.’ When being chased by a lion, he explained, a hyena would disappear down a burrow in an anthill and never come out. The lion would give an eerie howl of frustrated annoyance, but no matter how long a lion waited; even if a pride of lions took turns to be on guard for a month, the hyena would never come out – this was because the hyena was no longer there. ‘When a hyena takes over a burrow in an anthill,’ he said, ‘it is his intention that his mind and body be melted down by a sea of termites.’ This was very different to a dead animal being eaten by red ants. It was the morphing of the hyena into an aethereal life force that parasitically attached itself to all members of the termite Queendom. After an uncanny gulp of held breath he explained further; the termite mind is a collective mind, it thinks as a one mind spreading and sharing its synaptic thought processes between Queendoms right across subterranean Africa. Because the hyena had slyly embedded his spirit into this endless termitine mind – their ‘everywhere’ and their consequent awareness of all bush goings-on had unavoidably become his for his own perverse machinations. By the same willed intent, he would then coalesce his virtual spirit-being out of the termite world and back into his physical reality: to resurface wherever he felt his real presence was needed – or not needed, as in the case of the lion.

And with that, the old diviner returned to his tobacco pouch, leaving me to digest his awesome words.

What could have been a tedious journey home, flew by. The long edges of evening shadows melted into a deep velvet of forest dark; there to be sown up for the night with thin threads of wood smoke from village charcoal burners along the roadside. Soon we would be back in Luanshya with its cheery electric light windows and warm tarmacadam roads. Once home I asked my father to offer the old diviner a beer and a lift home – which he graciously accepted; luckily the prig was in a hurry to get back and write his report. For me it was an unwilling quick bath with Dettol, a willing fish finger and tomato sauce sandwich, and bed. I did not really object.

Hyenas danced a sly shuffle on the silver screen of my fading consciousness. I knew that they had been there in the bush, they were everywhere, even in my bedroom, but in reality, you just couldn’t see them.

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Nature Vs Nurture – A Sociological Approach to Feral, Isolated, and Institutionalized Children

A common question related to sociology deals with the nature of the human being versus the way it is raised. Does one know if he is a boy or a girl upon birth, or does he make this distinction based on the actions and words of those around him? How does prison affect the functionality of a person once he is released to the world? These questions are strongly related to the nature versus nurture – does a human enter the world with basic human function, or does he develop these functions as a result of those around him.

One topic sociologists may study is feral children. These are children that were deserted at a very young age, with death usually the intention of the parents, but were rather raised and groomed by animals. Sociologists found that children raised by animals acquired the instincts and behaviors of the species that raised them. One example of this occurred in the 1700s, when a feral child known as “the wild boy of Aveyron” was discovered by scientists of the day. He was found in France in 1798, and it was observed that he walked on all fours, did not indicate pain related to cold temperatures, and pounced on small animals – devouring them raw in ravenous fashion. Although most sociologists will discard the significance of feral children because of the sparseness of cases, it still teaches us a lesson that children must learn how to act at a young age. This essential time of youth is when children develop many essential social behaviors.

A slightly more common study is on isolated children. These are children that were raised by one person or a small group of persons in an isolated area with minimal or no contact to a typical society. One girl, Isabelle, was raised by her deaf, mute mother in the attic of her grandfather. Upon being discovered at the age of 6, it was found that she could not talk, and rather relied on gestures to communicate with her mother. She also had a disease called rickets as a result of an inadequate diet and a lack of sunshine. This basically made her legs useless. Her behavior towards strangers, men especially, was like a wild animal. She treated them with fear and hostility – and could only make noise in the way of strange croaks. Initially she scored nearly zero on an IQ test – but because Isabelle was discovered at such a young age, she was able to reach the learning level expected from her age in two years. It is possible that results of isolation can be reversed if the child is younger than twelve. The primary problem, however, was a lack of a language, which is basic to all human interaction. All other interaction can be divided into sub categories to vocal communication.

These first two studies, isolated and feral children, can be viewed through one of Charles Horton Cooley’s theories on human interaction. Cooley, who lived in the late 1800s, created a theory that summed up how human development occurs, capturing the theory in the concept of ‘the looking glass self’. This theory had three primary elements: we imagine how we appear to those around us, we interpret others’ reactions, and we develop a self concept. The basic gist of it is that we look at those around us, and base our appearance and social interactions on what they do and what they expect. If a feral child is raised by animals, he is going to acquire the attributes of those animals. Likewise, an isolated child will base his actions on other isolated individuals or no one, and will develop little or no basic interaction skill.

Still more common than isolated or feral children is institutionalized children. Two or three centuries ago, orphanages were much different than they are now. Children were raised with little or no care on a strict schedule. On top of this, children were often beaten, ragged, and denied food. As a result, children coming from orphanages tended to have difficulty establishing close bonds with others, and have lower IQs. In an account of a good Iowa orphanage in the 1930s, children were raised in the nursery until about six months. They were placed in cribs that had tall sides, effectively limiting vision to the world around them. No toys were hung from the cribs, not mother held them closely. The interaction they did get was limited to nurses who changed diapers, bedding, and provided them medication. Although everyone assumed that mental retardation was a “he was just born that way” issue, two sociologists investigated and followed the lives of the children who were raised in this Iowa orphanage. H. M. Skeels and H. B. Dye began to understand that a lack of mental stimulation was depriving these children of the basic human interaction skills they needed to be effective members of society. In a study, they took thirteen children who were obviously retarded and assigned them a retarded woman who would look after them. They also chose twelve children who would be raised in the orphanage the usual way, and tested both groups for IQ. The first group was noted to develop an intense relationship with their respective ‘mothers’, and received much more

attention than their counterparts. While all of the studied children were still retarded, it was noted that the first group’s IQs spiked by a jaw-dropping average of 28 points. In an equally startling statistic, it was found that the other group’s average dropped by an average of 30 IQ points. This study demonstrated the importance of human interaction at a young age.

A final lesson can be taken from deprived animals. These are animals that were stripped from their mother at a young age and raised in isolation. A famous study regarding this topic was conducted by Harry and Margaret Harlow, who raised a baby monkey in isolation. They constructed two ‘mothers’ for their monkey, one which was a wire frame with a nipple on it from which the monkey could nurse, and one that was covered in soft fabric. They found that even though the first mother provided nourishment, the baby would cling to the soft mother when frightened, showing that the monkey felt more comfortable through intimate physical contact – or cuddling.

When the monkey was introduced to a monkey community, he was rejected, and had no concept of how normal monkey civilization was structured. He knew neither how to play normally with the other monkeys, nor how to engage in sexual intercourse, despite several feeble attempts.

Upon conducting this study with female monkeys, they found that those that did become pregnant became vicious mothers – they struck their babies, kicked them, or crushed them against the floor. These were monkeys who were raised in this isolated environment for years, and had no chance of integration to society. Other monkeys were observed to overcome these disabilities with increasingly positive results: a corresponding relationship with the amount of time spent in isolation. Monkeys isolated for three to six months were relatively easily integrated, while monkeys isolated for years suffered irreversible effects. When applied to humans, we understand that social interaction is key to a socially efficient product.

In short, society makes us human. Babies do not naturally develop into adults, and social ideas are not transferred via DNA. Although the body may grow, isolation victimizes them to be little more than mere animals. In fact, a lack of language skill results in an inability to even grasp the relations between people – such as father, mother, teacher and friend. In order to develop into an adult, children must be surrounded by people who care for them. This process called “socialization” shows that we are crafted by those around us.

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Animal Symbolism in Feng Shui – Your Key to Success, Happiness, and Wealth

Below are some common animals used in activating sectors in Feng Shui. There is a long list of animals you can use, this is just a sampling of them.

Cow: The Chinese honor the cow because it pulls the plow used to prepare the fields from which they reap their harvest and it represents the season of Spring.

Crane. Symbolizes fidelity and longevity. Placed with a water feature in the North, it represents good fortune, wealth, wisdom and longevity for mother and father.

Dolphins: Considered magical creatures. They are said to help you to think more freely and creatively. You may place dolphins in your child’s room or in your office.

Dragon: The dragon is one of the four Celestial Animals in Feng Shui and is the animal of the East. They can be placed almost anywhere in your home, but I would at least have one in the East. The dragon is considered “All Powerful” and is said to bring about wealth, prosperity, power, protection, great success, good luck and abundance. If you have a dragon that is holding or protecting a round object, that is said to be the Pearl of Life and symbolizes wisdom and great achievement. They do not belong in bedrooms or bathrooms.

Eagle: A picture or figurine of an eagle in full flight is an excellent symbol of success, strength, power and authority. Always have an eagle flying or perched on a tree do not show one looking fierce and predatory. Best placed in your career sector or N corner of your desk or office

Elephant: Elephants are considered sacred creatures in Feng Shui and are probably best known for their symbolism of wisdom. They also symbolize good luck, fidelity, fertility, longevity and virility.

Fish: (Arowana, Money Carp). The Fish is a symbol of wisdom, faith, freedom, wholeness and purity. In Chinese, the Arowana is called “Kam Lung Yue”, which means Golden Dragon Fish. This name is synonymous with great wealth in abundance. Fish represent Yang energy which brings good fortune into your home or business. Fish also symbolizes freedom from restriction. The fish is often seen on the soles of the Buddha’s feet which represents the power of energy.

Fu Dogs: Fu Dogs are part lion and part dragon. They are used to protect your home or office from negative energies and to ward off evil or people with bad intentions form entering your home. The male represents domain of the world at large, and the female represents offspring and home These are intended to be placed on the ground and to flank your front door. Place the male with a ball under paw on left side of door as you face out. The Female with a lion cub under her paw should be on the right.

Horse: In a galloping stance, the horse represents nobility, fame & recognition and is also used for single people looking for a life partner. Do not display a raring horse directly in front of or behind you. The best location to place the horse is the living room and in the South sector of your home or desk. Do not display the horse in any of the bedrooms.

Iguana: The iguana symbolizes creativity, spontaneity and playfulness. It is a good item to place in your child’s Personal Development sector.

Lion: Symbolizes courage and bravery. It is considered as a guardian and protector of businesses and homes. A pair of lions with both their front feet on the ground can be placed on either side of the front entry way to your home or business for protection of wealth.

Love Birds: Because love birds form an attachment to their partners and are said to pine away when one dies or they are separated, they represent devotion, fidelity and romantic bliss. Best placed in the SW of home or bedroom. These are the Western Culture’s equivalent to the Chinese Mandarin Duck.

Lucky Cat: The lucky cat has a very powerful symbolism in bringing luck and good fortune into your home. They can be placed in your Good Luck Sector or in the SE corner of home or desk. The legend behind the Luck Cat is as follows: In the 17th century , there was a run down and poverty stricken temple in Tokyo. The temple’s priest was very poor, but he shared what little food he had with his pet, Tama. One day, a feudal lord was caught in a storm while hunting and he took refuge under a big tree near the temple. While he waited for the storm to pass, the man notice Tama, the priest’s cat, beckoning him to come inside the temple gate. The feudal lord followed the cat into the temple and instantly, a lightning bolt struck the place where the lord had been standing. Thus the cat saved his life. From then on, the Lucky Cat has been considered an incarnation of the Goddess of Mercy ( Kwan Yin ).

Mandarin Ducks: Like the love birds, mandarin ducks represent devotion, fidelity and romantic bliss and should be placed in the SW sector of your home or bedroom.

Money Frog: This is a mythical animal known as the “Chan Chu” and is said to appear every full moon near homes that will receive news of increased wealth and good fortune. Also called the “Three Legged Money Frog” it is usually placed right inside your front door facing INTO the home. The coin in it’s mount should be place with the four symbols up, not down. It can also be placed in your wealth sector and next to a cash register. They are never to be placed in a kitchen, bedroom or bathroom.

Panda Bear: This beautiful animal is one of the most endangered animals in existence. It is called Da xiong mao which means giant bear cat in China. The Panda is believed to have magical powers that can ward off natural disasters and evil spirits and is also a symbol of peace.

Peacock: The peacock is the western culture equivalent to the phoenix in China. Placed in the SW of your home or bedroom it is said to attract and enhance happy relationships and marriage.

Phoenix: The phoenix is imaginary creature of the ancient Chinese Feng Shui. The phoenix is usually red or crimson in color and symbolizes the luck of wish fulfillment. The South corner of your home or office can be activated by placing the phoenix there. The phoenix is said to bring opportunities, fame and recognition. When combined with its “soul mate”, the Dragon, put in SW to attract happy relationships and marriage.

Red Bird: This can be an image or a figurine/statue of any kind of bird, a parrot, cardinal, etc. Put in the South for protection.

Rooster: If you have a lot of petty office politics going on in the workplace, displaying a rooster in your office is said to counter this negative energy. The rooster is said to quell arguments, backstabbing and politicking. Also, pointing the beak of a rooster towards a beam or column in the home will deflect the negative chi they can bring.

Tiger: The tiger is considered the king of the wild animals. It is seen as a symbol for royalty, power and fearlessness. An image of the Tiger is believed to dissipate negative chi. The Tiger is very important in Feng Shui because its stripes represent the auspicious balance of Yin and Yang.

Turtles: The turtle symbolizes support, longevity, endurance, wealth, happy family, long generations, good luck and fortune. Because the turtle is one of the celestial animals, it is said to possess protective powers as well. Legend tells us that the turtle has in his body the secret of heaven and earth and the design on his shell shows the Lo Shu magic square which is the guide for life. Turtles can be placed anywhere, but you should really have at least one in the North sector of your home. They can be facing in different directions based on what they are made of. For example: place crystal turtles facing North, metal turtles facing West, wooden facing East or Southeast, ceramic facing Southwest or Northeast. The Dragon Headed Turtle is a powerful symbol of wealth, health, prosperity and protection and should be placed in the North or the Southeast.

Wild Geese: Because wild geese always fly in pairs, they are excellent to put in SW part of your home or bedroom to enhance your romantic relationship. Geese are messengers of good news and represent the married state.

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Elsa the Lioness

This is the most famous lion to ever walk on this planet. Her life was very short but she left a mark that will be there for many centuries to come. Elsa came in to the life of George and Joy Adamson in 1956 with her two sisters ‘Big One’ and Lustica when George was forced to kill their mother during one of his game drives. Later on, ‘Big One’ and Lustica were taken to the Rotterdam Zoo in Netherlands. Elsa remained in the care of the Adamson. A relationship soon developed and she was more of a domesticated pet that a wild lioness. Joy Adamson was closer to Elsa than anyone else and their relationship was that of equals. Joy Adamson was determined to teach Elsa how to survive in the wild and she gave it her all. With a lot of setbacks, she managed to teach her how to survive in the wild.

Elsa’s life was documented in many books and films earning her world recognition and fame. When she was three years old, she brought three cubs of her own to show the Adamsons. This was an emotionally charged moment as the Adamsons hugged and embraced Elsa and her litter. They named the cubs little Elsa, Gopa and Jespah. The four later returned to the wild but they kept in touch with the Adamsons. Elsa’s life was suddenly cut short when she was only five years old when she succumbed to an attack of babesiosis, a blood disease that mostly affects the cat’s family. Her remains were buried in the Meru National Park.

Elsa’s story shows us that there is more to the wild animals than we care to know. They too have a compassionate and softer side that we can relate to if only we take time to understand them; those animals too need love, care and affection, that we humans can coexist with them and still respect each other. Let us all will to do all we can to make this a better planet for all animals.

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Ferret Myths Dispelled

Ferrets make great pets, but there are some myths about them that prevent people from even considering adopting them. The information below serves to dispel many of the myths concerning ferrets. Hopefully, if you’ve heard and believed one of these myths, this information will help you to see that a ferret really is a fantastic pet.

Myth #1 – Ferrets are wild animals. Ferrets actually are not wild animals. In fact, ferrets can no longer survive in the wilds as they once could because only domesticated breeds exist now, with the exception of the Black Footed ferret. If a pet ferret is set free, he won’t survive for very long.

Myth #2 – Ferrets stink. This is true, unless the owner of the ferret has him or her de-scented. Ferrets have scent glands just like skunks do – and when they are frightened or threatened, those scent glands are released. The scent glands on their back, near the tail can be removed. Ferrets also have scent glands under their eyes, which cannot be removed. As long as the ferret is bathed about once a month, however, he won’t smell.

Myth #3 – Ferrets are rodents. This is not true. In fact, ferrets eat rodents. A ferret is actually a member of the weasel family. Weasels are not rodents either. They are Mustelidae.

Myth #4 – Ferrets bite. Yes, ferrets do bite, but it isn’t normally to be mean, and they can be trained not to. Think of it like this – A ferrets jaw is strong enough to break all of the bones in your hand. He won’t do that though. He may nip you while playing with you, but again, he can be taught not to.

Myth #5 – Ferrets carry rabies. Lots of animals can carry rabies if they are not vaccinated. Ferrets aren’t any different.

Myth #6 – Ferrets see well. In fact, ferrets don’t see well at all, and on top of that, the only colors they can see are red and blue. Because ferrets don’t see well, one must be careful about ‘sneaking up’ on one.

Myth #7 – Ferrets are dangerous to small children. This isn’t true. In fact, children are a danger to ferrets because they play too rough. This is why ferrets should not be around small children – not because the ferret may hurt the child.

Myth #8 – Ferrets cannot be trained. This is absolutely wrong. You can litter train ferrets, train them not to bite, and even train them to do tricks. Try training a cat to do tricks!

Myth #9 – If you are allergic to cats, you should not have a ferret. This is also absolutely wrong. In fact, ferrets are known as the hypo-allergenic pet. They don’t produce any pet dander. Ferrets are perfect for anyone who has any type of pet allergy.

Myth #10 – Ferrets must be caged, like hamsters. This isn’t true, although many ferret owners will cage their ferrets when they are not at home. This is for the ferret’s protection. Ferrets are highly curious, and often get themselves into dangerous situations if they aren’t being watched – much like toddlers.

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