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Positive News Thursday

Updated: Apr 2, 2023

Uplifting news nuggets from around the globe to put a spring in your step.

Iberian lynx camouflaged in the undergrowth
Conservation Success

One of the most endangered cats in the world, the Iberian lynx, is bounding towards recovery thanks to parallel efforts by Spain and Portugal. In 2002, fewer than 200 remained in the wild. Today, around 1,400 roam the Iberian Peninsula, reports BioGraphic. The success of the program has also given conservationists better odds at recovering the black vulture and the Iberian imperial eagle - one the rarest birds of prey in the world.

Unlikely Sanctuary

The demilitarised zone between North and South Korea has found new life as a wildlife sanctuary. 6,200 wildlife species now call it home, including 38 percent of the Korean peninsula's endangered species, such as golden eagles, musk deer, and mountain goats, in addition to hundreds of endemic plant species. That's pretty impressive for a stretch of land that is only 250 km (160 miles) long and approximately 4 km (2.5 miles) wide.

1,000 Year Ago

One thousand years ago, 20 percent of Scotland’s land was covered by forest, but by the mid-18th century, that number dropped to just 4 percent. About that time, the trend reversed, as the country moved from deforestation to reforestation efforts, and forests began to grow back. After growing for two centuries, forest cover is almost back to where it was 1,000 years ago.

Élisabeth Borne, Prime Minister of France
Élisabeth Borne | Wikipedia
Backbone of Mobility

France, which already has one of the world's best high-speed rail networks, is investing yet more in this service. Prime Minister of France and former Minister of Transport, Élisabeth Borne, has announced a €100 billion ($107bn) investment in railway infrastructure by 2040. Borne said that rail is “the backbone of mobility” and is key to a successful ecological transition. These improvements are to enable more passengers to choose to travel by train rather than private cars, and will thus reduce local greenhouse gas emissions.

Doing One's Bit

Claims by Russian media that the British “are so impoverished by their government’s profligate bankrolling of Ukraine that they have resorted to eating squirrels” may ease “the pain of sanctions” against Moscow, says The Times Editorial Board. But the reports may also come as “welcome news to all of those in this country who have been shouting in the wilderness for many years about the culinary offer that is sciurus carolinensis – the grey squirrel”. According to the paper, “there are so many ways to enjoy the little things: braised, stewed or, if spice is your thing, crispy fried with paprika”. The taste is like “a subtler version of rabbit, sweet, light in colour and finely textured”. And given the “genocidal war” waged by the greys on native British red squirrels, eating the invader species “offers not only a novel gastronomic experience but the chance to do one’s bit”. Keep calm and carry on!


"When I eventually met Mr. Right I had no idea that his first name was Always."

Rita Rudner

On this Day

16 March 1995: Mississippi ratified the Thirteenth Amendment - which abolished slavery - 130 years after it was added to the U.S. Constitution. However, Mississippi's ratification was not made official until 2013, when the state notified the U.S. Archivist.


Vicarious Adrenalin Rush

Flying into the crater of an active volcano in a wingsuit? It had never been done before, but that didn't stop experienced wingsuiter and skydiver Sebastián Álvarez from wanting to try.


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