Elspeth Lodge Mar 30, 2011 – 1:33 PM ET | Last Updated: Mar 30, 2011 3:13 PM ET
A Twitter user is lightening up a scary situation this week at the Bronx zoo, after a venomous, female Egyptian cobra escaped from its enclosure and has yet to be found.
The snake struck up his conversation with the public on March 28th:
On the 29th, among other places, he was on top of the Empire State building:
Last time we checked, the venomous reptile, who now has 130,881 followers, was on his way to Ellis Island:
An ABC News reporter who attempted to reveal Bronx Zoo’s Cobra’s human identity was unsuccessful:
@BronxZoosCobra deflected again, writing, “Interest in revealing myself? I’m totally naked all the time. I don’t think I can get more revealing.”
Still, “she” said she wasn’t affiliated with the Bronx Zoo and was “just a former tenant.”
The person behind the Twitter account also has declined to be interviewed via phone. “My voice is a little lissspy,” the tweeter told ABC News. But, said “she” was enjoying the newfound fame.
“I’m happy for the opportunity to show people a softer side of snakes. Snakes are people too. Oh, wait. Nevermind.”
Elspeth Lodge February 8, 2011 – 2:42 pm
The alleged stalker of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has apologized after Mr. Zuckerberg filed a restraining order against him, CBS news reports.
The file claims Mr. Manukonda tried to “follow, survey and contact Mr. Zuckerberg using language threatening his personal safety,”and the safety of his girlfriend and his sister, reports TMZ.
“I’m a peaceful guy … I’m sorry he thought I was trying to harm him,” he said to CBS. “I understand he’s a busy man … I’ll respect his privacy.”
Thirty-one-year-old Pradeep Manukonda traveled to Mr. Zuckerberg’s home and offices attempting to get some advice for a “personal” problem. He also sent several Facebook messages and mail to Mr. Zuckerberg, even sending flowers.
Law enforcement officials told TMZ that Mr.Manukonda had gone to several Facebook offices in Palo Alto attempting to contact the entrepreneur to ask for money for his financially-strapped family. He was also intercepted by Facebook security when attempting to climb the steps to the front door of Zuckerberg’s home on January 24.
Elspeth Lodge February 8, 2011 – 4:04 pm
A newborn baby was discovered in an arena toilet three days ago after a circus show in Greenville, South Carolina.
Late Friday night, a custodian at Greenville’s BI-LO Center heard the babies whimpers and went to investigate, reports CNN.
Greenville Police say the baby boy is currently clinging to life at a South Carolina hospital, where he was rushed, directly, to be treated for hypothermia.
The hunt is on for the baby’s mother and CNN reports three factors that are making the investigation especially difficult for police.
1) The crowd was especially large, there were around 10,000 people the night of the abandonment.
2) There is lack of surveillance footage in the bathroom.
“The cameras do not stay stationary — they move, so they do not have a constant vision of the bathroom,” said Greenville Police Chief Terri Wilfong to HLN’s Nancy Grace on Monday.
Chief Wilfong says they are sifting through footage taken in and around the restroom for clues to the mother’s identity.
3) Authorities believe the mother was trying to hide her pregnancy.
“Somebody — a parent, a family member or a friend — would know that (she) was pregnant,” Greenville Police Sgt. Jason Rampey said.
He told reporters that he doesn’t think “it’s physically possible that a mother would not know (she) had given birth to a child.”
Sgt. Rampey assumes that the mother is young and said that they want to find her not only because they are investigating criminal wrong-doing, but because they want to make sure she is OK.
WASHINGTON, DC – JANUARY 19: (AFP OUT) Sasha Obama (L), the younger daughter of U.S. President Barack Obama (R), greets Chinese President Hu Jintao (C) during a state arrival ceremony at the South Lawn of the White House January 19, 2011 in Washington, DC. Hu and President Obama will hold a press conference at the White House later today. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Elspeth Lodge January 21, 2011 – 3:49 pm
It’s not every child who gets to practice their school-room Chinese on the President of China. But, Sasha Obama went to greet the Chinese president prepared to practice her Mandarin language skills, reports Reuters.
Sasha stood behind a rope, eagerly waiting to greet the Chinese president with the rest of the crowd on the White house lawn, on Wednesday morning. She waved around a Chinese flag frantically, as her father greeted the Chinese president, Hu Jintao.
Sasha is studying Chinese with her school’s class, revealed a White House official to Reuters. “Not every (child) has the opportunity to try out their first phrases of Chinese with the president of China, but she had that chance,” said the official.
A pet Chihuahua wearing a coat walks on a street in Beijing December 11, 2008. REUTERS/Jason Lee (CHINA)
Elspeth Lodge January 20, 2011 – 11:44 am
Four-pound chihuahua Chico is lucky to be alive after an owl tried to fly away with him early Wednesday morning, reported the Northwest Herald.
An owl on the prowl swooped towards the tiny dog, out on a walk with his owner in Illinois.
It was entirely a matter of luck that the owl failed to get a good grip on the canine’s jacket with his claws, said the owner, who yelled and lunged at the bird as it tried to fly away with his pet. The bird then became caught on the dog’s leash, managed to free itself and flew away.
Chico’s winter jacket came between him and the owl’s sharp talons, ultimately saving his life — a great horned owl‘s claws are capable of applying 200-300 pounds of pressure per square inch.
Chico survived the attack with nothing but a superficial puncture wound, reports his owner, who took the dog directly to an emergency vet for x-rays following the incident.
Rebecca Murphy of the McHenry County Conservation District’s Wildlife Resource Center told The Herald that attacks like Chico’s aren’t common; while owls aren’t rare in the McHenry County area, they seldom attack animals with their owners present. But, she also said, “[owls don’t] know the difference between pet animal or a prey animal, with a small dog like that there is a potential that a larger raptor species could take them down.
“The vet said it must have been very hungry and desperate to do something like that,” said the dog’s owner.
N.Y. police ridiculed for busting chess players in park
National Post files
“Let’s get out of here before the cops catch us!”
Elspeth Lodge November 18, 2010 – 3:22 pm
“Drop that bishop and come out with your hands up!” says Wednesday’s New York Post, as it ridiculed N.Y. policemen for busting seven men who were playing chess in an upper Manhattan park.
The men were charged with failing to comply with signs posted in the park that read “Adults allowed in playground areas only when accompanied by a child under the age of 12.”
But, would the N.Y. Post be so quick to judge the police department’s actions if they knew that one of the men had nine priors for reckless endangerment, grand larceny, drug possession, and criminal mischief? And, that another was arrested previously for assault with a weapon?
“The Police acted appropriately in issuing criminal summonses last month to men in a section of Inwood Hill Park restricted to children with their parents or other minors,” Paul J. Browne, Deputy Commissioner of the New York City Police Department told the National Post.
“The precinct conditions team there responded to community complaints about drinking, drug use and other problems, including violations of Park Department regulations designed to protect children. The cavalier treatment of the story in effect damned police for doing their job. Had they not addressed the condition, no doubt they would have been damned for leaving the men in the children’s section,” he says.
However, not everyone in the area agrees that the police of the 24th precinct acted appropriately.
“Is chess really something that should be considered a threat to the neighborhood?” Inwood resident and mom Joanne Johnson wrote in a letter to Mayor Bloomberg, the city council and the police commissioner, the N.Y. Post reports.
“This incident is an embarrassment to the officers from the 34th Precinct who felt that it was necessary to use their badge and authority to issue such a random summons,” Johnson added.
Zoo Atlanta’s giant panda gives birth for the third time
Zoo Atlanta / HO / AFP / Getty Images
Lun Lun and child on November 3, 2010
Elspeth Lodge November 4, 2010 – 11:24 am
On Wednesday, at 5:39 a.m, Zoo Atlanta became the only U.S. zoo in 2010 to welcome a giant panda baby.
Officials at Zoo Atlanta say the birth is “a significant achievement for global efforts to save a critically endangered species,” because less than 1,600 giant pandas remain in the wild (there are another 280 in zoos around the world, 11 of them in the U.S.).
Lun Lun, a 13- year-old female giant panda, was artificially inseminated on June 13 after she failed to mate with the 13-year-old father Yang Yang. This will be the couple’s third cub; all offspring were conceived by artificial insemination.
Like any good celebrity, Lun Lun gave birth in a specially prepared birthing room: a den within Zoo Atlanta’s giant panda building. The zoo even recorded her labour and posted it online.
Typically, a Panda labor will last from one to eight hours. However, Lun Lun’s first child, Mei Lan, who arrived in 2006, was born in thirty-six- hours — breaking the record for the longest panda labor ever recorded. Her second baby, Xi Lan, was born in 2008 in just under nine hours.
Zoo officials describe the new panda as “the size of a cell phone,” and say that Lun Lun’s maternal instincts are good and that she’s taking excellent care of her new baby.
CNN reports “a preliminary veterinary checkup will be performed as soon as staff is able to remove the cub without disrupting maternal care.”
The baby panda will be available for public viewing in the spring of 2011.