According to Medical News Today, the body is made up of millions of cells and for their better functioning omega-3 fatty acids are needed. Omega-3 fatty acids work to improve the heart, blood vessels and blood flow, to keep the pulmonary system ie lungs, airways and blood vessels active. Apart from this, it is also needed for the better functioning of the body’s immune system. Image: Canva
In the collection of ancient woodlands known as the West Cambridgeshire Hundreds, the Wildlife Trust has planted thousands of trees during the last year. The trust’s Caroline Fitton explores why – and the latest research on how best to plant new trees.
In a mathematical equation of complex long division, thousands have gone into hundreds – but what exactly is a Hundred?
From the 11th to the 19th centuries a hundred was a unit of English local government and taxation, the subdivision of a shire.
The origins are thought to reference a group of 100 hides (unit of land) required to support one family, traditionally understood to be 120 acres.
During autumn 2022 into winter of this year, the Wildlife Trust in Cambridgeshire’s reserves teams have planted upward of 3,000 trees at Waresley, Gamlingay and Hayley Woods, more than triple the number than in previous years.
This has happened for a variety of reasons – in the bigger picture, the effects of climate change are undoubtedly having marked impacts on woodlands across the country: significantly wetter autumns and winters coupled with much drier springs and summers have caused some loss of tree density.
The effects of ash dieback is gradually changing the look and profile of many woods, with the removal of diseased trees being unavoidable.
This has been the case especially at Waresley Wood, where regenerative felling needed to take place to remove affected ash trees; the new planting here has been primarily in mitigation for ash dieback losses, with species such as hornbeam, wild service and small-leaved lime.
Sourcing the right tree stocks for replacement planting presented an interesting conundrum – preparation and obtaining the right stock is key.
Reserves officer David Price explains: “There has been increasing difficulty in obtaining UK grown trees from UK seed – the stock at tree nurseries in the UK has run down to a great extent. Planning needs to be done some years in advance, so nurseries have been unable to cope with the extra demand for stock – this meant that we had to scout around and place orders very early where possible.”
The range of 1,400 species planted at Waresley Wood includes more than 200 oak trees, 150 field maple, silver birch, downy birch, alder, grey willow, hawthorn, hazel and dogwood, with similar numbers of species at both Gamlingay and Hayley, although with rather more hazel at these woods to facilitate the traditional woodland management procedure of rotational coppicing.
Planting also became an experimental process for trialling the use of different plastic free, biodegradable tree guards – while using up existing plastic stock (always removed as and when the trees no longer need protection), the team also used cardboard, cotton and pine rosin – the choice option of wool mix guards not yet being available in suitable volume.
Some were planted without guards to help establish survival rates when left bare, with double density planting in these areas on the basis that should half be eaten by deer, enough trees will still thrive. Definitive results will take a few years to determine, but already the cardboard variety has proved least popular; coated in a biodegradable wax some even fell apart on installation.
The cotton and pine rosin type proved more robust and have been more rigorously tested at production stage, made by people who have put thought into the process.
Ultimately, each option will be assessed in terms of success rate, cost and labour intensity, but long term will see a reduction in plastic pollution and less labour removing old tree guards as the new generation will biodegrade.
David adds: “We had to be wary in researching our sources for the various guards as there are some misleading products out there which aren’t completely biodegradable.
“With the old green plastic guards there can be a weird unearthly glow at times when light shines through forests of green tree guards – the beige cotton ones will blend in much better.”
The hope is that, in years to come, people will still be able to visit and enjoy these climate-proofed wildlife-rich ancient woodlands – soon to be alive with swathes of bluebells in the next few months.
Back in autumn 2022, the trust launched a Landmark Appeal, part of the Great Fen’s Peatland Progress project, looking to raise £400,000 to purchase Speechly’s Farm, completing a jigsaw linking ancient fragments of existed fen habitat.
Thanks to many generous donations and contributions, the trust iscelebrating having reached that amount which, along with funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, has now enabled the land to be purchased.
Looking ahead this unlocks much ground-breaking work of land restoration, peatland protection and carbon capture – all vital for the planet.
The trust is very grateful to everyone who helped make this happen.
A Delhi-NCR based group of animal rights activists is taking out a regular march to spread awareness on rights of those who feed and work to protect animals. The initiative, that started on March 16, 2023, aims to spread awareness about animal laws and to raise a voice against canine cruelty. The human-dog conflict has been an ongoing debate in the country, especially at residential societies in metro cities.
Animal Activist Ashish Sharma said that their rally has seen positive response so far
“Students from different schools and colleges are joining in continuously since March 16, 2023. Every day new students are participating, which is very encouraging, considering they are inspiring each other,” he said.
The group, through Whatsapp and other mediums, fixes a meeting point daily to spread awareness against animal abuse.
So farm the rally has been conducted a number of places in Delhi and Ghaziabad. Ashish Sharma further said that it’s important to educate people, especially youngsters on animal rights.
Feeding stray dogs is also often a bone of contention in residential societies. The rally is also stressing on the importance of feeding street dogs and drawing attention to every citizen’s legal rights toward dogs. “Feeding stray dogs everybody’s fundamental right, “he said.
SINGAPORE – Local biotech start-up Revivo BioSystems has developed a cosmetics testing platform which mimics the flow of blood under the skin, paving the way for more companies to move away from animal testing.
The in-vitro platform, launched on March 2, makes the company one of the front runners in the emerging field of “organ-on-chip” technologies, which seeks to model – on small chips made of plastic, glass or silicon – how human organs work.
These could make testing for drugs, foods and cosmetics in the lab more accurate and efficient.
In-vitro tests are performed in laboratories outside of human or animal bodies.
Revivo BioSystems’ platform has two devices that work together to evaluate the safety and efficacy of cosmetic products.
The first, known as the Revex chip, is a single-use plastic chip that has small channels that allow liquids to flow through. It has three chambers linked to these micro-channels, where human skin – taken, for example, from biopsies – can be placed and samples of the cosmetic product can be applied.
Synthetic substitutes for skin, created in laboratories, can also be used.
Four of these Revex chips can be put in a Relego collection device. As a liquid simulating human blood is pumped through these channels at body temperature (37 deg C), substances from the cosmetic product which have permeated through the skin sample and other proteins secreted by the skin cells dissolve in the fluid.
The fluid, and the substances it carries, is collected at preset time intervals. Its contents are analysed to show how the cosmetic product’s ingredients have interacted with the skin over time, to determine if the item is safe, or if it stands up to marketing claims.
Dr Massimo Alberti, chief executive and founder of Revivo BioSystems, said its dynamic platform is more accurate than traditional static cosmetic tests, which do not simulate the continuous flow of blood under the skin and can determine only the amount of permeated substances at a single point in time.
These static tests usually involve adding a test chemical to a reconstructed piece of human skin (made from cell cultures) that has the cosmetic product applied over it. As the chemical interacts with the skin, biological reactions occur and the substances formed can be analysed to determine if the skin reacted to the product in any way.
“Compared with other static systems which provide a very simplistic view of what is going on in the skin, our system allows us to look, over time, at what actually happens to the skin as it reacts to the cosmetic product,” said Dr Alberti.
Because the Relego collector is fully automated, the company said its platform reduces the man-hours needed to run in-vitro tests by up to 20 times.
It added that other cosmetic tests, such as those involving human volunteers where each is given a small dose of the product, still need to be performed.
With the enhanced accuracy and efficiency that the kit provides, Revivo BioSystems hopes that it will encourage more cosmetic companies to drop animal testing, which has already been banned in the European Union, South Korea and New Zealand.
In the US state of Idaho, those sentenced to death can also be executed by firing squad. Idaho may use this option if lethal injection is not available by 5 days. Republican governor Brad Little signed the law authorizing the use of firing squad and sent a letter to the Speaker of the Chamber, in which he explains that he has always supported capital punishment and that “The families of the victims deserve justice for their loved ones and the death penalty is a way to bring them peace”. Idaho thus joins Utah, South Carolina, Mississippi and Oklahoma in providing for the possibility of shooting convicts. The state Senate approved the bill to introduce the firing squad last year 21 march. With the signature of the governor it becomes law in all respects.
In the past, Idaho has been unable to procure lethal injection drugs due to drug companies’ decisions to withhold supplies for the purpose of executing prisoners. Last year the sentenced to capital punishment Gerald Pizzuto, convicted of the murder of two people in 1985, had his execution postponed because the “Department of Correction” (IDOC) did not have the material necessary to proceed. The last execution carried out in Idhao dates back to 2011. There are 27 US states in which the death penalty is still in force. In 2022, 18 convicts were killed, 5 in the state of Texas alone. Since the beginning of 2023, 9 prisoners have already been executed, all by lethal injection. Last electric chair execution was in 2020. Last time a firing squad dates back to June 18, 2010.
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A necropsy is underway after a dead dolphin washed up on the shore of a Baldwin County beach Monday morning.
The dead bottlenose dolphin was discovered on North Beach in Fairhope, according to the Dauphin Island Sea Lab, which studies marine life and educates the public.
While there is a possibility there was a “freshwater issue” that led to the dolphin’s death, a Sea Lab official told AL.com, the necropsy will determine how the dolphin died.
The Sea Lab said it would have further results of the necropsy Tuesday morning, but the full results could take several weeks.
Cristina Diaz-Clark with the Sea Lab’s Marine Mammal Research Program told Fox 10 the organization fields between 50 to 60 calls a year on dolphins washing up on Alabama beaches.
“We do have some hot spots, but we always ask everyone to make sure that they’re keeping a lookout because they can always end up anywhere that there’s water but definitely, this side of the bay’s a hot spot,” she said. “Dauphin Island’s a hot spot. Orange Beach can be a hot spot. It just depends on the time of year.”
Tura: The Wildlife department of West Garo Hills informed that it was in the process of investigating the death of a barking deer, locally known as ‘Balgitchak’, that had been rescued a few weeks ago from near the village of Chibinang in West Garo Hills.
The barking deer, which was already injured when it was found near the village of Chibinang near Phulbari, was rescued first by the GHADC forest team of Phulbari range before being handed over to wildlife officials.
The deer was then brought to the town of Tura where it was kept in an enclosure with another barking deer in an effort to acclimatise to the place. However, the deer was found dead today, March 27.
Informing about the situation, DFO – Wildlife, Rupankar Marak stated that the deer had been shocked due to the presence of many humans at Chibinang where it was kept while their department officials arrived.
“This meant that we had to acclimatise the animal and thus it was kept in an enclosure with another deer. However, it died this morning (not some days ago) and our team has gone to the place to determine the cause of death. As it is already night, we will have to perform a post-mortem tomorrow, March 28, to ascertain the cause of death,” said the DFO.
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He informed that the zoo in charge, as well as a veterinarian, are there at the spot to investigate. The deer, as per department officials, died this evening, March 27.
He added that the department had tried its best in saving the deer and its loss felt heavy for them.
Muslims around the world observe Ramadan, a month of fasting and reflection and choose to break their fast with a nutritious meals. While meat dishes are popular during this time, there are plenty of delicious vegetarian and vegan options to choose from. Here are some vegetarian Ramadan recipes to try.
Ramadan is a month of fasting and reflection for Muslims around the world, and many people choose to break their fast with a nutritious and hearty meal. While meat dishes are popular during this time, there are also plenty of delicious vegetarian and vegan options to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a satisfying main course or a tasty side dish, here are some vegetarian Ramadan recipes to try.
1. Hummus and Pita Bread
Hummus is a popular Middle Eastern dip made from chickpeas, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice. It is typically served with pita bread or fresh vegetables for dipping. This protein-packed dip is a great way to start your iftar meal.
2. Baba Ghanoush
Baba ghanoush is another Middle Eastern dip made from roasted eggplant, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice. It has a smoky flavor and is typically served with pita bread or fresh vegetables. This creamy dip is a great way to add some variety to your iftar spread.
1. Lentil and Spinach Curry (India)
This flavorful curry is made with lentils, spinach, and a blend of spices that includes cumin, coriander, and turmeric. It’s a hearty and satisfying dish that can be served with rice or naan bread.
2. Stuffed Grape Leaves (Middle East)
Stuffed grape leaves, also known as dolmas, are a popular appetizer or main course in Middle Eastern cuisine. They are typically filled with a mixture of rice, herbs, and sometimes nuts or raisins, and then rolled up and simmered in a flavorful broth.
3. Vegetarian Tagine (North Africa)
Tagine is a traditional North African dish that is typically made with meat, but this vegetarian version is just as satisfying. It’s made with chickpeas, sweet potatoes, and a variety of spices, including cumin, paprika, and cinnamon. Serve it with couscous for a complete meal.
1. Fattoush Salad (Lebanon)
Fattoush is a Lebanese salad that is made with fresh vegetables, herbs, and pita chips. It’s dressed with a tangy and flavorful dressing made with lemon juice, olive oil, and sumac.
2. Muhammara (Syria)
Muhammara is a roasted red pepper and walnut dip that is popular in Syria and other parts of the Middle East. It’s savory and slightly spicy, and it’s perfect for dipping pita bread or vegetables.
3. Biryani (India)
Biryani is a rice dish that is popular in India and other parts of South Asia. This vegetarian version is made with vegetables, spices, and fragrance! This is pretty famous in India, especially in Hyderabad. Biryani is not just food, it is an emotion. Veg biryani is a specialty, and number of recipes revolving the essence are created. Be it panner biryani, potato biryani, or more, a pan-Indian favorite, this dish is a must-have during any festival in India!
Popcru said the Correctional Services department is undermining state security by allowing private and foreign companies to run and control some of the country’s prisons.
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JOHANNESBURG – The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) said the Correctional Services department is undermining state security by allowing private and foreign companies to run and control some of the country’s prisons.
This follows a confirmation by the department that the man dubbed the ‘Facebook rapist’, Thabo Bester, escaped from the Mangaung Prison in Bloemfontein in May last year.
Mangaung Prison is contracted to private security company, G4S.
Bester, who was serving a life sentence for murder and a series of rape charges had been declared dead after his prison cell caught fire. However, DNA sequencing done on a woman identified as Bester’s mother did not match that of the burnt body in the prison cell.
Popcru spokesperson, Richard Mamabolo said private companies running the country’s prisons are more focused on making profit than rehabilitating inmates.
“These private companies have a disregard for human rights. Aside from the moral and ethical arguments about prison privatisation, there is ample operational evidence that the policy itself is flawed. The fact that the human rights dimension of private prisons has not been fully examined, is a dereliction of duty.”
Meanwhile, national police commissioner Fannie Masemola said investigations surrounding Bester’s prison escape are high on their priority list.
Masemola said a manhunt has since been launched to locate Bester’s whereabouts.
“And this is done in the best interest of justice for the victims, survivors and the affected families. Detectives from the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit and the organised crime investigations units in the Free State and Gauteng provinces have been working together around the clock on this investigation,” said police spokesperson Athlenda Mathe.
… Pakistan and smuggle the resulting trophy from Pakistan to the United … export of the Ladakh urial trophy would be achieved through … baggage, including the Ladakh urial trophy. U.S. Customs and … to import at least 97 hunting trophies into the United States …