Selection of tasty bite-sized chunks of uplifting news.
And the Winner is...
Dalia Fichmann, with this captivating portrait of an avalanche rescue dog, won the portrait category of the recent Dog Photography Awards. Fichmann accompanied an avalanche rescue team in Melchsee-Frutt, Switzerland, and to capture the shot, she lay in an ice cave and let the rescue dogs search for her. To view more winning entries in the 2022 'pooch portraits' competition, click here.
Act of Kindness
Rory McCarty was shocked to find an 82-year-old Navy veteran and widower still “grinding” out 8 hour shifts at a Walmart. He realized at that moment he could put his social media influence towards a good cause. Helping raise $108,000 in just a few days, McCarty gave it all to help the man finally retire. When Warren Marion walked into Walmart in Cumberland, Maryland, for the final time last week after having handed in a two-week notice, he was greeted with cheers, balloons, and a large check for $108,000. McCarty runs an extermination business called Bug Boys, and in a true 21st century story, managed to amass a TikTok following of 300,000 by showing videos of creepy crawlies he finds during work.
Researchers have identified a heat tolerant wheat that could improve yields in a warning world. Trials in Mexico’s Sonora desert found that the wheat offered up to 50 percent higher yields in hot weather compared to variants that are already farmed. “This is science we can now use to make an impact almost immediately,” said Prof Anthony Hall of the Earlham Institution in England, which led the research. “This is hopefully going to be the first of many steps to contribute to global food security in the coming years.”
No rhinos were poached last year in the world’s largest reserve for the greater one-horned rhino, say Indian police. It was the first year since 1977 that no rhinos were killed in Kaziranga national park, a wildlife-filled haven in India’s Assam state. The news is a win for conservationists who have been working hard to protect the animals, reports Reuters. The global population of one-horned rhino has soared from 200 to more than 4,000 since the turn of the 20th century, according to the International Rhino Foundation.
Housing developers in England will be required to create mini wetlands on new developments, the UK government has announced. The new rule is a win for the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, a charity that has long campaigned for such a move. “Not only will this decision provide £3bn in reduced flood damages, but it will provide a natural resource for people’s mental wellbeing by putting blue and green space in urban areas directly where people live and work,” said the charity. And, of course, provide more natural space to encourage biodiversity.
The largest discovery of rare earth metals in European history has sparked hopes of countering Chinese and Russian dominance in the sector. Swedish mining company LKAB said it found more than one million tonnes of the rare resources used to make smartphones, electric vehicles, wind turbines and speakers in the nation's Arctic region. Rare earth elements have never before been mined in Europe, making the continent dependent on imports from elsewhere.
“The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking spaces.”
On this Day
17 January 1917: The United States purchased three of the Virgin Islands - St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix - from Denmark for $25 million.
The Seekers' first hit single, recorded at Abbey Road studios in London in the autumn of '64, reaching No.1 in Feb '65.