More Leopard Attacks in India

Steve Jurvetson/Creative Commons

Two injured in leopard attack - The Times of India:

"The leopard sneaked into Kuani Gaon from a nearby forest area around 7 pm on Friday and attacked some cattle. As the villagers tried to chase the animal away, it attacked them."

Parson Spider

The parson spider is sometimes accused of having a dangerous bite, but that's a myth. My friend D'Arcy says she found this fellow in her crystal singing bowl. I didn't even know she had a crystal singing bowl. As a matter of fact, I didn't even know what a crystal singing bowl was.

Animal Hoarding in Philadelphia

"Apparently he was locked out of his house, he was naked on his patio furniture, and then they found the dead iguana. That's how they got the warrant."

I guess that's as good a time as any to find it.

Six Reasons for Dog Attacks

Dogs attack only when provoked, say experts, News - City - Bangalore Mirror,Bangalore Mirror:

"0n the past one year, more than 14,000 people have been bitten by street dogs in Bangalore. . .

We spoke to a few vets and animal experts to find out the reasons behind recent spurt in dog attacks in the city. According to S Yethiraj, the dean of the Government Veterinary College, there are six primary reasons for dogs to attack human beings — sexual aggression, maternal aggression, territorial aggression, fear psychosis, provoked aggression and rabies."

Interesting article, though apparently not read by the guy who writes the headlines. 

Inside Thailand’s Cobra Village

Gallery: Inside Thailand’s cobra village |

"'If I didn't get my fingers amputated, I would have died. The last time I was bit and lost a finger was December 26, 2004. It was the exact moment the tsunami hit Thailand.'

Bualee Chai says he refuses to take anti-venom when he gets bit, because the technique used to extract the venom is cruel and hurts the animals. "

Death Stories: Mummies of No Man's Land

I saw my first mummy at the No Man’s Land Museum in the Oklahoma Panhandle. Mostly I remember the museum as  images: Fine figurines carved from alabaster.  A flat chunk of sandstone big enough to stopper a fifty-five-gallon drum; pressed into it, like a family crest into sealing wax, the footprint of a carnosaur.

There was a peace pipe once owned by Two Guns Whitecalf, the man immortalized by his profile on the Buffalo nickel. A horse-drawn hearse; the tools of nineteenth century carpenters.  Archaic cash registers and adding machines.  Strands of barbed wire in different styles, some fitted with circular barbs like the rowels on spurs, some as wide and almost as flat as scotch tape.  The first telephone lines in the area had run along the top strands of barbed wire fences.

Carnivorous animals stuffed in mid-snarl -- a mountain lion, a brown bear, a pair of lean coyotes.  Perched in a glass case was an infant rattlesnake posed in the act of suicide, stabbing its curved fangs into its own back.  Next to it a rusty-brown diamondback too thick to circle with the fingers of one hand stared with fogged, dead eyes; its tail terminated in fifteen rings of rattle.  Between this large adult and the infant lay an even more imposing rattle -- nineteen rings long -- chopped from the tail of what must have been a huge snake.

There was the museum’s unofficial mascot, a spindly-legged Hereford calf dead for decades.  Its head branched into two, but incompletely, so that a right eye and a left were set next to each other in a gaze from the land of nightmares.  It looked like a trick of mirrors. They’d had to wait several days after its birth for the calf to die.

In a display case in the center of a room lay a human child, folded into a painful-looking pose. He appeared to be made of stone. It was a Native American boy, perhaps three years old, perhaps ten. The fingers of his left hand clutched nothing, suggesting the experimental grip of a baby. He was discovered when someone saw that small fist sticking out of the dirt in the floor of a cave.  His right hand was tied to his left thigh; no one alive knows why.  His hair was wild and red--the color is common among those who’ve lain in the ground a long time. Iron in the soil. Most of his flesh looked wrinkled, like the sagging skin of a reptile, but stone-hard. There were exceptions, patches where the skin was smooth as life; the toes of one foot, for example, were perfect.

An arm hid part of his features. I had to crouch close to look him in the face. That face always struck me as oddly particular, human. Death and desiccation had twisted it into the semblance of agony.

I have seen many mummies since. Once, in the Ozark Mountains, I visited the basement of a museum where half a dozen bodies lay loosely wrapped in plastic, all of them carried with delicate hands from a cave centuries after their deaths. They were, it is true, mostly bone, but a stubborn layer of desiccated and patchy flesh clung to them. I stroked the skull of one ancient woman—a vacant conchoid, colored as if with nicotine, rough here and there with the tenacious papery flesh, wreathed with textured strands of hair.

She and her comrades had endured because they'd found their way into a cave, and the mouth of the cave had filled with dirt. Within the moist mountains, their cave was a sealed bottle where weather could not penetrate, and so the available moisture expended itself in meager chemical reactions and the bodies dried like jerky on the bone. An archaeologist there told me how unusual that was. "Sometimes after five years, there's nothing left but coffin handles. Even bones don't ever last fifty years in this region."

Tucked into the ancient Ozark woman's embrace lay the mummy of an infant, as if that connection still mattered. Babies are disproportionately represented among natural mummies. Their bodies begin relatively free of microbes. Living longer corrupts a person.

Of course, the Oklahoma mummies had died in drier circumstances. I remain most attached to that first mummy, the one who came from the caves my grandmother explored as a child. He is the only human specimen from the Kenton caves whose whereabouts are still known to science. But the caves yielded prodigiously in those early years, and some of the mummies lingered for decades before vanishing from the record.

The author with the cast of an apatosaur leg bone near Kenton, Oklahoma.

Kangaroo vs. Grandmother

Features | 94-year-old broom-wielding Aussie survives rogue Kangaroo attack:

"Australian police pepper-sprayed a rogue red kangaroo that attacked a 94-year-old grandmother that was hanging up clothes on her washing line.

“I thought it was going to kill me,” the victim Ms Phyllis Johnson told The Courier-Mail.

“It was taller than me and it just ploughed through the clothes on the washing line straight for me.

“I happened to have a broom nearby and I just started swinging at it. I bashed it on the head but it kept going for me, not even the dog would help, it was too frightened,” added Ms Johnson."

Thanks to Croconut for the news tip.

Arizona woman dies four weeks after bear attack

Arizona woman dies four weeks after bear attack | Reuters:

"Lana Hollingsworth, 61, died late on Monday at a Scottsdale hospital of complications from the injuries she received when the bear attacked her in Pinetop, in northeast Arizona, her husband Marv Hollingsworth said.

'She was a real animal lover, so it's strange that she was killed by bear,' Hollingsworth told Reuters."

Australia Blames Camel Farts for Global Warming

AFP: Wind of change: Aussie 'farting camels' cull under attack:

"The world's association of camel scientists fought back angrily on Monday over Australian plans to kill wild dromedaries on the grounds that their flatulence adds to global warming.

The idea is 'false and stupid... a scientific aberration', the International Society of Camelid Research and Development (ISOCARD) charged, saying camels were being made culprits for a man-made problem."

This sounds like the sort of parody you'd find in The Onion, but apparently it's real.

Photo by Dee Puett

Desperate Turtles

Photo by Parker Grice

Filling In

Dozens of desperate turtles crossed our yards
escaping suffocation from the bulldozer filling in
what my father called a sump hole and I called

a pond. All summer it was a dump for office waste.
I played with electrical wire a scientific madness.
I smeared tar all over my brand new jeans.

There were trees and thickets before that. One oak
was so large the trunk still stood, branches stripped.
I now sat in the crotch looking out over nothing

as far as I remember. I found a snapper’s shell
split open. Eggs. There was a mother inside
me hoping… for what? I took them home

and set them beneath the pine outside my window.
In the morning they were gone, nothing of what had been,
or of what had come, or of what I had ever hoped to tell.

Poem by J. Rodney Karr

Grizzly Injures Four Teens

Creative Commons/Chad Teer

Bear critically injures Denver teen in Alaska backcountry - The Denver Post:

"The teenagers decided to cross a river single-file, with Gottsegen and 17-year-old Joshua Berg, of New York City, leading the line, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Gottsegen and Berg began screaming that they saw a bear, officials said. The animal, with a cub nearby, attacked four students."

This looks like a case of a mother bear defending her cubs against accidental encroachment.

Thanks to Steve V. for the news tip. 

Human-Animal Embryos Created in the Lab

Embryos involving the genes of animals mixed with humans have been produced secretively for the past three years | Mail Online:

"Scientists have created more than 150 human-animal hybrid embryos in British laboratories.

The hybrids have been produced secretively over the past three years by researchers looking into possible cures for a wide range of diseases."

Thanks to Laura for the news tip. 

Gorilla Victim Sues

The pizza stand worker who got hurt by a zoo gorilla in a notorious 2009 escape is suing the zoo. He's claiming his injuries were more severe than originally reported.

Free Times: Government - Zoo Worker Sues Over Gorilla Attack

The gorilla achieved even greater fame when politcal campaigner Rusty DePass remarked on Facebook, "I'm sure it's just one of Michelle [Obama]'s ancestors - probably harmless." DePass later explained he was speaking "in jest," which I'm sure made everyone feel better.

(Not the same gorilla:)

More Australian Crocodiles

Sarah sent these images of crocodiles she captured on and near the Finnis River in Australia. 

Two crocodiles pass

Fishing; crocodile in background


Crocodile in motiion:

Master of the Macro

The latest issue of Oklahoma Today (July/August 2011) has my article on Thomas Shahan, the astounding master of the macro. As mentioned on this blog before, Shahan takes gorgeous photos of jumping spiders, robber flies, and other tiny wildlife, showing more detail than I would have thought possible. You can see his work here. But do get the magazine if you can; a monitor doesn’t do justice to these extraordinary photographs. 

More Leopard Details

A little more info on the leopard incident in northwest India: "The leopard was eventually tranquilised, tied up and taken to a veterinary clinic, where it later died.

A forestry department official said the animal had suffered multiple 'external injuries' as the police had used batons and knives to save their colleagues."

Read more:

Video of Indian Leopard Attack

The leopard hurt six civilians, then a cop and four forest guards who came to remove it. It was tranquilized--and stabbed to death.

Zip ahead to about 1:20 for a brief glimpse of an actual attack.

For a little more context on human-leopard conflict, see this related post

Leopard Mauls Six in India

A startling photo-essay:

Leopard attacks in India - Connecticut Post:

"A leopard mauled six people in the Indian village of of Prakash Nagar after straying into the village on Tuesday, July 19, 2011. Forestry department officials eventually tranquilized the animal."

Coyote Bites Colorado Toddler

Boy, 2, suffers minor injuries in coyote attack in Broomfield's Anthem area - Broomfield Enterprise:

"The 21/2-year-old boy, who was not seriously hurt, was walking with his father and 9-month-old sister around 8 p.m. Monday in the Anthem neighborhood in northern Broomfield when the attack happened. The boy's father, who asked not to be identified to protect his family, said a small coyote emerged from tall grass adjacent to the trail and bit the boy on his back and buttocks.

'As soon as I saw (the coyote) I started yelling and stuff,' he said. 'He still had time to knock my son over and bite him in the lower back area. (The coyote) then ran about 20 or 25 yards up the trail before turning around and looking at me before running off.'"

Gannet Blinds Man in One Eye

In the they-don't-necessarily-like-you-just-because-you're-trying-to-help-them file, we have this sensationlistic report from Wales:

Man's Eyeball Pecked Out by Bird in Vicious Attack:

"Buckland walked up to the bird and lifted it away from the incoming tide. But the bird became startled by a passing dog and began pecking at Buckland’s face.

The pecking went on for several seconds with the bird piercing Buckland’s right eyeball three times with its razor-sharp six-inch beak."

Lions Maul Mormon Missionary

Lions maul Mormon missionary at Guatemala zoo | The Salt Lake Tribune:

"Oakey, 20, wanted a picture of himself in front of the lion cage. He scaled a concrete wall in front of the enclosure, not realizing the lions were only about two feet below the wall on the other side.

Two lions stalked stealthily up to the wall. One grabbed Oakey’s right leg, pulling him back against the cage, and the other lion grabbed his left arm.

Oakey repeatedly punched the lion with his free arm and gouged at its eye."

(A Follow-up story from the same paper has further details of Oakey's treatment and prognosis.)

Predictably, some are spinning this as a tale of miracles. 

More about the Huge Crocodiles of the Adelaide River

Here's the video Croconut linked below.

Black bear confirmed as elder's killer

Bear confirmed as elder's killer:

"A black bear that was killed following a fatal attack June 26 on a Xaxli'p First Nations elder on her rural property north of Lillooet has been confirmed as the culprit.

DNA in the saliva found on the clothing of Bernice Evelyn Adolph, 72, matches that of the suspect animal killed July 9 by a conservation officer.

It was one of five black bears killed by conservation officers in the days following Adolph's death."

'I felt like I got hit by a truck': bear attack victim

Follow-up on one of the grizzly attack stories from last week

CTV British Columbia - 'I felt like I got hit by a truck': bear attack victim - CTV News:

"Johnny Johnson was out picking salmonberries near the remote village of Oweekeno on Rivers Inlet when he was attacked three times by the mother bear. The angry animal took a chunk of his scalp and left him with bite and claw wounds on his leg, waist and hand."

Cheetah attacks two men

Cheetah attacks two men at Eagle Heights animal centre (From News Shopper):

The cheetah had taken quite a few bites and scratches from both the cameraman and the trainer, ripping the shorts off one in one close swipe of the paw. 
The two men managed to sit on the cheetahs head while another member of staff ran for a fire extinguisher which took several more minutes to collect. 
Eagle Heights owner Alan Ames, 55, told News Shopper he was surprised by the attack but says it was “no big deal”. 
“What happened is very unfortunate and we take it very seriously, but it’s not like someone getting their arm ripped off by a gorilla."

Kansas City Lightning

Tornadoes and sharks are scarier, but lightning kills more people--about 24 thousand a year. And ten times that number are injured by lightning each year. 

Dee captured these images on a single tornadic night in Kansas City. 

Photos by Dee Puett

Massive Saltwater Crocodile

Interesting photo buzzing around the Web. Folks familiar with Photoshop say it's legit. At an estimated 18 feet, this saltwater crocodile, which leapt to a bait for the benefit of tourists in Australia's Northern Territories, would run about 3 feet short of the largest on record.

The missing leg is allegedly the result of the croc's tangle with a shark.

Related Post: World's Largest Crocodile Dies

For information about crocodile attacks on humans:

Deathstalker Scorpions, Samsun Ants, and Saw-Scaled Vipers

Fascinating article about dangerous wildlife of the United Arab Emirates. The UAE is home to the snake many consider the most dangerous in the world, as well as the occasional hyena or leopard, but, as the article explains, it's the half-centimeter Samsun ant that poses the biggest threat to human life.

The Samsun ant, incidentally, is sometimes smoked as a substitute for marijuana. Researchers believe its venom holds promise as an anti-inflammatory medicine.

Full: Desert survival: please do not touch the scorpions - The National:

"'People tend to think of dangerous monsters that live in the desert but what causes far more deaths are ants and stings that can cause anaphylactic shock,' says Dr Drew Gardner, a desert ecologist and zoologist, and professor of Arabian ecology at Zayed University."

Jury selection begins in killer python case

Killer python: Jury selection begins in Sumter County killer python case -

"Since 1980, the Humane Society of the United States, which opposes ownership of constrictor snakes, has documented more than 200 incidents of snake attacks, escapes, abandonments and cruelty cases in 43 states. The reptiles have been linked to the deaths of 16 people in the U.S., including seven children.

'These grim statistics include not only children who have fallen victim to the reckless behavior of others, but experienced snake handlers,' said Debbie Leahy, the organization's captive-wildlife specialist."

Road Hazards of Mississippi

Beware of gators | | The Rankin Ledger:

"'In a few instances, there have been larger alligators struck, causing damage to a vehicle,' he said.

It was near the Reservoir on the night of June 4 when Tracey Stokes said she was driving from Rankin County into Ridgeland and got a cold-blooded surprise."

Grizzly roams free after fatal Yellowstone mauling

Grizzly roams free after fatal Yellowstone mauling | Reuters:

"The female grizzly bear that attacked and killed a hiker when apparently startled with two cubs will be allowed to continue roaming free in Yellowstone National Park after officials determined the animal had acted to protect its young.

A probe of Wednesday's fatal bear mauling, the first in Yellowstone since 1986, suggests the mother grizzly was provoked by a perceived threat from the hiker and his wife when they encountered the animal and its cubs foraging for food."

An Encounter with a Fer-de-Lance

by guest writer S. C. Morgan

Costa Rica is home to many of the world's deadliest snakes, including thirteen species of pit vipers. The largest of these is the bushmaster (Lachesis muta), but it is the fer-de-lance (Bothrops asper), or terciopelo, that locals fear the most.

When we first moved to Costa Rica our neighbors repeatedly warned us about them. They believed if I merely saw a man bitten it would bring bad luck. I wasn’t keen on seeking one out, but sometimes a snake is just where it is. 

One February morning back in 2007 my husband and I drove to the county seat to pay our garbage bill. I dressed casually in shorts and a tank top for comfort in the tropical heat. Alan parked our old, dependable Jeep pickup in front of the municipal building and I asked if he wanted to go with me. Getting the predictable answer, I left him there and walked in. Ten minutes later, I was back. I climbed into the truck and started to tell him about my success over bureaucracy. 

Then something caught my eye. 

Right in front of my bare legs was a huge snake. It was sliding out of a hole where the hinges of the open door met the body of the truck, its head the size of a fat banana. At first it arrowed straight toward me, sliding its thick body over the bottom hinge of the door. Then it folded back against itself. I was sure it was about to strike. I saw the triangular shaped head. Two heat-sensing pits above its nostrils. Brown hash marks on its dark gray sides. Terciopelo.

 What happened next took less than five seconds, but it felt as though the snake and I were frozen in time. Our eyes locked. My mouth tasted of metal. I remember thinking, How could there be a goddamned snake in our truck?  A nanosecond later I croaked, "Snake…snake….SNAKE!"

It looked annoyed and waved about in midair.  It flicked its tongue, searching for an escape. I sucked my stomach in, drawing my chest and face as far away as possible. My knees were so close I was afraid it would use them as a landing pad, and the console between the two seats blocked me from moving over into the driver's seat. I needed an exit. Now.

I jerked my legs around to get out. The snake drew back. Alan watched helplessly as it struck twice as I whipped past.

Once out, I slammed the door, hoping to crush it in the hinge. Too late. Alan saw it roll over the hinge and retreat inside the fender wall while the door closed. He estimated it was about three feet long and three inches thick. Huge. 

It is amazing how much can happen in a short period of time, how fast a snake can move. Looking back, I am sure it was a warning strike. If it used all of its incredible force or extended itself fully I know I would have been snake bit.

A nurse with ER background, I had read that the average venom injected by terciopelo is about 100mg, although they can inject up to three hundred. Fifty is a fatal dose for humans. I did not know at the time— not sure it would have calmed my frayed nerves any—that adult terciopelo often save their venom when striking animals larger than they can eat, because it takes a full day to regenerate their venom. Small consolation. Terciopelo young inject the full amount, having not learned this valuable lesson yet. Pit viper venom is hemotoxic and complications with clotting factors is the number one cause of death; unless the patient is given antivenin the blood becomes more and more coagulated, the body begins to throw clots to the coronary arteries, and cardiac arrest is the final outcome.

So, there we were in Bribri with a venomous snake in our truck. Granted, it was not in the cab, at least not that we knew. Alan gingerly opened the driver’s side door and popped the hood latch. Then he raised the hood. We both peered into the bowels of the motor. No snake. I kept one eye on my sandaled feet in case it wiggled out from underneath. 

“I’ll go get some repellent,” I said, and ran across the street to buy a can of Off at the grocery store. Snakes have a strong sense of smell and I reasoned it wouldn’t care for the spray. Alan opened up my side of the truck. Again, no snake. He sprayed into the dark hole and slammed the door. We waited. No snake emerged. 

We discussed the anatomy of our truck. The snake must have wiggled up the wheel well– last night? Two weeks ago?– and found an entry between the exterior paneling and the inner wheel well. The only exit was how it got in, or the way it tried to get out.

"So, if we keep the door shut it can’t get at us, right?” I asked.

“Unless there are snake sized holes in the firewall of the dash,” Alan said.

“Great.” I suddenly became acutely aware of  how much rust the old Jeep had accumulated after twenty years in the tropics.

“Let’s go get something to eat, ” he said. “Maybe it’ll leave while we have lunch.” I wasn’t very hungry, but I wasn’t eager for an hour-long ride back home.

After hearing about our escapade, the proprietor of the little cafe kept a close watch on the truck. No snake. Customers offered up advice about how to deal with our dilemma. One suggested we spray with insecticide. I explained I’d already used mosquito repellent. “It is very dangerous to have a snake in the car,” he said. The understatement for all time.

“Well, we can’t stay here all night," Alan said after lunch. "I guess we’ll take a chance.” I was ready to leave the keys in the truck and walk away. Maybe put a sign in the window that read: Free.

The drive back was uneventful. Alan said I rode like a nine-year-old schoolgirl, sitting ramrod straight, my knees bent, and feet tucked as far away from the dash as I could get them. At one point the bead seat cover brushed the back of my calf. I almost jumped through the open window.

We never saw the snake again, but Alan did find its skin. When it left, it used a hole in the frame to peel it off. The locals tell us terciopelo are more aggressive right after they've shed their skins. The one that rode with us to Bribri was enough for me.

(Gordon's note: The terciopelo is also called the barba amarilla or tommygoff. It's one of the lanceheads, the snake genus responsible for more human deaths in the Americas than any other.)

Photos by S. C. Morgan, with special thanks to Clodomiro Picado Institute.

Bear Attack Research

A lifetime of bears -- An interesting profile in the Edmonton Journal:

"By the time Stenhouse got outside, a woman was whacking the bear with a broom. Realizing the situation was spiralling out of control, Stenhouse took a moment to figure out his next move. It was too dangerous to shoot from where he was standing. Just then, someone fired a couple of shots from across the street, and the bear went down.

It was too late, however, to save the victim. A good part of his skull had been torn apart. Blood had spilled everywhere.

Polar bears attacks such as this one had been rare in Churchill up until this point. People had been charged by animals in the past, but only one person -a teenager who was throwing rocks at an animal -had ever been killed.

The blood-soaked tracks leading to the scene of this attack suggested that the victim had been scavenging through the remnants of a burntdown hotel in the middle of the night when the bear came around with the same idea."

Photography by Wayne T. Allison

Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Kills Hiker

After a spate of attacks by black bears, here's the second grizzly attack in the news:

BBC News - Yellowstone National Park grizzly bear kills hiker:

"A female grizzly bear has killed a man out on a hike with his wife in the US after the couple apparently surprised the bear and its cubs, officials say.

The attack took place on the Wapiti Lake Trail, in an isolated area near the middle of Yellowstone National Park, officials said.

The woman survived despite being chased by the bear and lifted into the air by her rucksack, she told park officials."

Thanks to Jay and Laura for the news tip. 
Photo by Wayne T. Allison. 

Man Survives Grizzly Attack

Our bumper crop of bear attacks continues with another from British Columbia. Unlike the others reported over the past few days, this one involves a brown bear.

Man attacked by bear a nature lover: family: "John Johnson, 51, from Wuikinuxv, a village of about 70 people on the Wannock River 80 kilometres from Bella Bella on the central coast, suffered a broken arm, cuts and puncture wounds in the attack. He also needed skin grafts on his head."

Death Stories: Slice, Conclusion

Thomas Cole: Subsiding Waters of the Deluge

 Go to the Beginning of this story

The waters return with constant motion from the lowest depths of the sea to the utmost height of the mountains, not obeying the nature of heavier bodies.
Leonardo da Vinci

“Some day this man’s going to walk away,” Spitzer said.  Having looked at all the equipment, we were sitting in the reception area of the Center for Human Simulation, where a computer screen greets visitors with the invitation to browse in the bodies of the Visible Humans.  On the couch, for no apparent reason, sat an incongruously primitive cloth dummy wearing a baseball cap that advertised one of the Center’s corporate sponsors.  Spitzer was talking about the problems of introducing motion to the digitized cadavers.  The army wants the virtual flesh to interact properly with bullets; surgeons want blood to flow from it convincingly.  Fluid dynamics is an extraordinarily complex field, as Leonardo knew; he returned to the problems of flow throughout his life, and in the end decided the world would die by flood.

The waters of the sea will rise above the high peaks of the mountains towards heaven and fall again on to the dwellings of men. (That is, in Clouds.)

Spitzer’s view is more optimistic.  “There’s a bigger pay-off than saving your life,” he said.  “Entertainment.”  He posited that the movies will solve the problems of virtual bullets and blood before scientists ever get around to it.  Special effects companies have already used the data set to lend verisimilitude to their animations in commercials and short sequences in a few films (the Bruce Willis science fiction picture Fifth Dimension, for example).  In theory, they could eventually use it to replace human actors.

Which brought Spitzer to an uncomfortable issue.  If the virtual bodies can be used for realistic simulations of action, they could be used for pornography.  I squirmed at the memory of my early adventure with Jernigan’s testicle.

The pornography question came up in the planning stages of the Project.  The scientists at the University of Colorado and the NLM realized they couldn’t control the way public-domain materials would be used, but they did want to preserve the donors’ anonymity.  There seemed to be no way of doing so short of literally cutting off their faces.  As it turned out, the scientists settled for simply not releasing names.  Reporters quickly deduced Jernigan’s identity when Spitzer revealed that the Visible Human Male had been executed in Texas.  He regrets being so specific.  The rest of the world may know the virtual cadaver as Paul Jernigan, but Spitzer never calls him by name.

Leonardo: Deluge over a City

Victim Saved Black Bears' Lives

Interesting new development in the British Columbia black bear case.

B.C. elder killed by black bear had prevented animal’s shooting, chief says | Posted | National Post:

"VANCOUVER — Tribal officials wanted to kill problem bears that were frequenting the property of an Xaxli’p First Nations elder, but the 72-year-old woman, who was later mauled to death by one of the bears, had directed the officials to leave the animals alone, an Xaxli’p chief says."

Black Bear Attacks Woman in Car

Yet another attack by a black bear:

Province advises caution after Labrador bear attack - Local - News - The Telegram:

"A woman driving between Churchill Falls and Happy Valley-Goose Bay was bitten, after a black bear got its head into her vehicle through an open window."

Black Bear Attacks Jogger in Washington State

An amazing number of black bear attacks within a few days. Here's the latest, from Washington state:

Black Bear Sought In Attack Near Colville WA:

"A 36-year-old woman was attacked by a black bear while she was jogging in the late morning on a trail between Thomas and Gillette lakes, 17 miles northeast of Colville on the Colville National Forest. She dropped to the ground into a protective fetal position and the bear batted at her and then left the area. Later in the day she was treated and released at Mount Carmel Hospital in Colville."

Black Bear Eats British Columbia Woman

CTV British Columbia - B.C. conservation officers probe possible fatal bear attack - CTV News:

"A pool of blood, pair of glasses and a blood-stained jacket covered with animal fur were found near the woman's home."

The link includes some interesting video.

Update from CTV:

Four black bears have been caught and killed by wildlife officials, including one who they think dragged the victim away.

"The final bear that we snared (Saturday) evening was within metres of where the remains were found and it fit the description," conservation officer Rod Olsen said. "We're hopeful we have the right animal."

Further tests will determine if one of the bears was involved in the attack.

This later report also says the victim had already complained about bears trying to enter her home. Though officials are being careful not to spell things out until they have all the facts, it seems clear that this was a simple predatory attack. 

Rabid fox attacks Florida couple

Another rabid fox attack, this one from Florida.

Rabid fox attacks couple:

"'He was trying to get a piece of that arm,' Jim said. 'He was shaking, kicking and raising all kinds of Cain trying to get a piece of that arm.'Anna Jo says minutes passed before her husband could pry off the animal.'I threw him on the ground and kicked him a few times, and he got me inside the leg,' he said. 'I thought he was down. Wrong.'
The fox mangled Anna Jo's arm. 
'It was like a big gush of blood out of this huge hole in my arm,' she said. 'I mean, we're talking big.'"

Black Bear Attacks Woman in Arizona

Gilbert woman attacked by bear in Pinetop - East Valley Tribune::

"“This was a predatory attack and the animal was considered extremely dangerous. The department had to dispatch it for the public’s safety.”

Game and Fish Department is examining the bear to confirm it is the same animal that attacked the woman. Officials do not believe it is afflicted by any disease, but testing will be conducted to be sure."

Elk Attacks

Captive elk photographed by Dee Puett

The Payson Roundup / Rogue elk attacks Payson woman:

This article tells of an unusual recent attack by a cow elk:
Lori Limebeer was treated and released at the hospital after a CT scan revealed that the blow to her head caused no brain injury, although she lost her recollection of the attack.

Even more interesting are the background stories it gives, like this one:

An elk gored a hunter to death as his wife filmed the incident. . . . The woman says that in retrospect she wished she had run to the truck to get the rifle, but she didn’t want to break off filming the attack.

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