After multiple recovery attempts, the Japanese coast guard has successfully rescued the dog seen above. The dog was found afloat on the roof of a house off the coast of Kesennuma, a city washed away by the tsunami three weeks ago. They believe he was at sea for the entire three weeks. It was a difficult rescue; the dog was initially scared by the sound of a helicopter and hid inside underneath the roof. The helicopter ran low on gas, and so a coast guard boat made another attempt to coax him out later in the day. Rescuers were able to get the dog to eat sausages and cookies, and he licked one of the rescuers on the boat. We patiently await the Parry Gripp song about this.
In other adorable dog news, Yale University Law School’s library has started a trial program to lend out a unique item: a certified therapy dog. Librarian Julian Aiken thought lending out his Jack Russell-border terrier mix, named Monty, would help stressed-out students relax. He said, “Librarians should be allowed one potentially brilliant but spectacularly rummy idea every decade or so, and this was mine.” Students can check out Monty for 30 minutes at a time in a back office of the library. The dog is even cataloged in the Yale library and has his own Library of Congress number. We bet that impresses all the bitches at the dog park.
Na na na na na na na na BAT NEWS
A study in this week’s issue of Science estimates bats save the U.S. agriculture sector $23 billion per year by eating insects thus allowing for lower pesticide use. One bat eats nearly nine thousand insects per year when they aren’t busy getting stuck in our hair, turning into vampires, and creating the superhero Gotham deserves. That $23 billion figure doesn’t even include the money saved by not having to deal with the environmental impact of higher pesticide use. Unfortunately, white-nose syndrome is threatening beneficial bat colonies — killing over a million bats in North America since 2006 — and may drive some species into extinction within 15 years. Meanwhile, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service spent just $2.4 million studying the syndrome last year. That’s only one-hundredth of one percent of the amount bats save us annually on pesticide costs. It’s because bats aren’t cute, isn’t it? That settles it. Let us commence Operation Put Cute Outfits On Bats And Photograph Them For The Internet immediately.
- Dog rescued after three weeks at sea on tsunami debris (videos at JapanProbe)
- Yale University Law School’s library is lending out a therapy dog for 30 minutes at a time. (NPR)
- Bats save the U.S. agriculture sector tens of billions of dollars per year, but white-nose syndrome is threatening them. (80beats)
- A study at the The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine found hands-free faucets to actually be dirtier than manual faucets due to five extra internal components in the automatic faucets which were susceptible to bacteria growth. The bacterium Legionella spp. was found on half of the automatic faucets compared to 15% of the manual ones. After flushing the faucets with chlorine dioxide, 29% of the automatic faucets still harbored bacteria compared to 7% of the manual ones. We’re going to play it safe and just wash our hands with any hand sanitizer we didn’t drink already. (WebMD)
- Ireland’s central bank and a group of independent experts have concluded Ireland’s banks need another €24 billion (US $34.2 billion) to survive the country’s financial crisis. After the additional €24 billion recapitalization, nearly €70 billion (US $100 billion) will have been poured into the banks, which is about half of the country’s annual GDP, or, put another way, €17,000 per Irish citizen (US $24,300). You can buy a lot of paper tigers with that. (BBC)
- What do you do when your airplane suddenly sprouts a sunroof and you rapidly descent from 36,000 to 11,000 feet? Tweet pictures of it of course. (TheDailyWhat)
KNOW YOUR STATS
- An estimated 86% of the adult population in the U.S. will be filing tax returns this year. The other 14% reportedly have a dapper Corgi accountant who can get them out of jams and help them solve mysteries. (VisualLoop)
- Looking for a mortgage interest deduction for next year’s taxes? There’s a seventeen month supply of homes on the market at the current sales pace. That figure doesn’t include an additional nine month supply comprised of troubled homes not yet foreclosed on. Unfortunately, the tax break for first-time homebuyers expired. (LATimes)
- TurboTax put together a list of 10 strange but legitimate tax deductions. Want to deduct a set of breast implants? Become a stripper. Your kid has an overbite? Sell them to the circus Buy a clarinet.