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Donkeys stolen, skinned in Africa to feed Chinese demand

Donkeys stolen, skinned in Africa to feed Chinese demand

World
Dawn was just beginning to break when Joseph Kamonjo Kariuki woke to find his donkeys missing. The villager searched the bush frantically for the animals he depends on to deliver water for a living, but they were nowhere to be found. It was the village's children who led Kariuki to the ghastly remains: three bloody, severed donkey heads lying on the ground. "I was in shock," said Kariuki, 37, who is known in his Kenyan village of Naivasha as "Jose wa Mapunda" — "Joseph of the Donkeys" in Swahili. Kariuki believes his donkeys were the latest victims of a black market for donkey skins, the key ingredient in a Chinese health fad that's threatening the beasts of burden many Africans rely on for farm work and transporting heavy loads. From Kenya to Burkina Faso, Egypt to Nigeria, animal...
Feed the birds, but be aware of risks, say wildlife experts

Feed the birds, but be aware of risks, say wildlife experts

Science
Scientists are warning of the risks of wild birds spreading diseases when they gather at feeders in gardens.Experts led by Zoological Society of London say people should continue to feed birds, especially in winter, but should be aware of the risks.If birds look sick, food should be withdrawn temporarily, they say.The review of 25 years' worth of data identified emerging threats to garden birds. Finches, doves and pigeons are vulnerable to a parasite infection. Meanwhile, a form of bird pox is becoming more common, causing warty-like lumps on the bodies of great tits and other birds.Other disease threats, such as salmonella, appear to be declining."Our study shows how three of the most common diseases that affect British garden birds have changed both dramatically and unpredictably over th...
Your Instagram feed may reveal if you have depression, study finds

Your Instagram feed may reveal if you have depression, study finds

Health
Your Instagram feed may be better at recognizing signs of depression than your doctor, according to a study from researchers at Harvard University and the University of Vermont. Researchers used a machine learning computer program to analyze 43,950 Instagram photos from 166 participants. They found that the computer's analysis of Instagram feeds was better at diagnosing depression than a general practitioner. The study, spearheaded by Andrew G. Reece at Harvard University's Department of Psychology and Chirstopher M. Danforth at the University of Vermont's Computational Story Lab, also found that certain Instagram filters were associated with depression. People with depression tended to either not use filters, or use to disproportionately favor the "Inkwell" filter -- which makes your ...