At first glance, these little guys appear hairless, but they aren't entirely so; if you look closely at the photo, you see vibrissae around their jaws. And they are something else: they can chew through concrete. They never get cancer. They aren't rats, either, so that's rather a misnomer.
They live underground, and their tunnels can extend as much as fifteen miles. But the issue with that is that the atmosphere down there tends to become hypoxic, meaning that there's not a lot of oxygen down there. So the little mammals metabolize fructose - like plants - when they run low on oxygen.
They were thought to have a lifespan of about five years when I first started working with them. Mine were still going strong at eighteen. Funny how "settled science" works.
I also cranked up the heat in that facility to an uncomfortable (for humans) 90 degrees. NMRs love heat, so better results were obtained. Producers of the old "Animal Planet" show were kind enough to send me a copy of their "extreme biters" program, in which I appeared briefly as more or less an NMR expert. Whatever.
But the fructose metabolic path is unique; it's what plants do, not what mammals do, so that's just another interesting facet. At oxygen levels low enough to kill a human within minutes, the NMR can survive for hours by switching to burning fructose. They live for at least a couple of decades, they don't tend to feel much in the way of pain, they're cancer-resistant, they can switch from oxygen to fructose to keep their systems running, and their social system is like that of bees - they have a queen, who is the only reproductive female in their underground hive.
They're really quite interesting, if admittedly unattractive little mammals.
"This is just the latest remarkable discovery about the naked mole-rat—a cold-blooded mammal that lives decades longer than other rodents, rarely gets cancer, and doesn't feel many types of pain," says Thomas Park, professor of biological sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago, who led an international team of researchers from UIC, the Max Delbrück Institute in Berlin and the University of Pretoria in South Africa on the study.
Apparently unique to the Portland area waterways - which given the amount of pollution in the waters around the "Green&Sustainable" city is something of a feat in itself. As the old adage goes, "even a blind hog, in a forest of oaks, will uproot the occasional acorn." The same can be said for Oregon Zoo.
Well, they're not pigeons, they're sage grouse, but a federal judge nixed the idea of building a big farm of aerial Cuisinarts in the Steens Mountain area of eastern Oregon over concerns about the birds. Evidently, it's okay to kill a bunch of raptors and thousands of bats with these "green power" monstrosities, but the ground-based sage grouse must not have its habitat disturbed.
Greater sage grouse need sagebrush year-round for mating, nesting and rearing their broods. They also eat pretty much only sagebrush through the winter. Loss of sagebrush habitat has contributed to sage grouse population decline in Oregon.
Environmeddlists are thrilled with the verdict, which is kind of amusing since they push "green energy" right up until it doesn't suit them.
As an aside, we have no wind turbines around here, and it's quite nice - I noticed a bald eagle catching a thermal yesterday just above our house; he showed up right around the top of our pine tree and circled until he gained enough elevation to head over the mountain-top toward the river.
The beaver is Canada's national symbol, and a rancher in Saskatchewan found that they can do more than simply fell trees and build dams when she went out to check a herd of heifers in one of her pastures last Friday.
They can also herd cattle, or so it appeared as she observed 150 head following along behind a beaver as it made its way through the pasture.
Oh, wait. When she's not working on her knees and back doing porn flicks, she's out throwing bottles at people. Much to her surprise, people have had about enough of that whole "antifa" and "black bloc" stuff. Hard as it may be to believe, they're starting to fight back. She went to the riot, claiming that she hoped to get 100 Nazi scalps. So she went there deliberately looking for trouble, but apparently never thought for a second that the trouble she sought might just punch her out.
Despite the way she's been portrayed on CBS, she's no victim. And the guy who punched her out isn't a "white supremacist"; just one of many people who increasingly find that they've had enough of these masked jerks and have decided that they're just not going to put up with their mayhem any longer. And the backlash is long overdue.
Over an 18 hour stretch this weekend, 29 people were shot in Chicago. Rahm may have declared the place a "sanctuary city", but it looks like word didn't percolate down to the peeps on the streets. This may come as a huge surprise, but it appears that almost every one of the wounded were "men" between the ages of 18 and 28.
It's interesting that they tell readers when the incidents happened, where they occurred, what medical centers they were taken to - but no other details.
Record high revenue, nearly 50% above years past, and still our Democrat overlords are talking about raising taxes (again) to fill a $1.6 billion "budget hole". Those people wouldn't recognize a budget if it walked up behind them and bit them in the ass with all 32 teeth. The state doesn't have a revenue problem. Democratics have a spending problem.
And in unrelated news, some of the premiere angling destinations in Central Oregon - the Metolius, Deschutes, and Crooked Rivers - have a problem.
Portland General Electric built the Pelton-Round Butte dam near the confluence of those rivers, forming Lake Billy Chinook, which has become a fairly popular recreation site for boaters. The problem, of course, is that the reservoir retains heat, which is bad for salmon, steelhead, and trout. It's also bad for the insects that constitute food sources for both fish and birds. And for 100 miles downstream from the site, warm water released from the lake has damaged the entire ecosystem: formerly clean gravels in the lower Deschutes are now coated in algae, many of the birds that once fed on caddis flies have disappeared, and the fish are having stress issues.
Apparently hoping to deflect blame, PGE sold half of the complex to the Warm Springs tribe; as a sovereign nation, they don't necessarily have to abide by U.S. laws. Nonetheless, PGE is being sued by a group that wants to see actual cold water restored to the lower Deschutes River, and although the company tried to get the suit dismissed, the judge rejected their arguments.
It's not as though PGE needs the dam to provide hydropower in any event; they purchase 26% of their power from out of state, 25% from natural gas - only 16% from hydro.
“For those that continue to seek improper and illegal entry into this country, be forewarned: This is a new era. This is the Trump era. The lawlessness, the abdication of the duty to enforce our immigration laws, and the catch and release practices of old are over,” Mr. Sessions said in prepared remarks.
Illegal entry into the United States can be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony. But the DOJ’s new guidelines indicate that prosecutors will seek felony charges in cases in which a person has a documented history of illegal entry into the U.S. For example, felony charges will be sought against someone who has two or more misdemeanor illegal entry convictions or at least one illegal entry conviction and another aggravating factor such as a felony criminal history, gang affiliation, or prior removals from the U.S.
Finally, it appears that someone is willing to enforce our existing laws. ICE reports that they rounded up 339 illegal aliens in one day this week - and it's only Tuesday. No wonder the illegals are running scared. Now, go after the American scofflaws who hire the illegal scofflaws! Let's not go with half-measures.
A few years back, I was visiting my parents in Ft. Myers Beach, Florida, and they took me one evening to a nice little restaurant with a large deck overlooking the establishment's boat dock and the water. We were having an enjoyable dinner out there when a family of Dominican "immigrants" took a table near the edge of the deck. They ordered some bottles of beer, and everything was peaceful until one of those guys jumped up and broke a bottle over the head of the guy sitting across from him. Yes, there was a lot of blood. The offender and, apparently, his mother, decided to leave.
Since nobody else was doing anything, I stood and blocked their exit. Mama said "We don't want no trouble." I pointed out that they should have thought about that two or three minutes earlier, and told them both to go back to their table and sit. The tough guy pointed over to the guy who was bleeding and hollered that he'd do the same to me. I looked him in the eye and said, "I don't think so, sonny. There's a railing behind you, but I can't guarantee that you'll miss the boat dock. What I can guarantee is that if you try anything, you're going down. Now get over there and sit." They did.
I returned to our table and sat, but kept an eye on the pair. Mom was appalled. Dad was having a great time. Everyone else was in shock. During all of this, restaurant staff had called the Lee County Sheriff's office, and before long, the place was crawling with deputies. A couple of them frog-marched the offender out in cuffs, while others started interviewing witnesses. Sure enough, fingers started pointing at me.
"So, I understand you stopped them from leaving," the deputy said, as the ambulance pulled up to retrieve the victim. We had to go through the whole story, much to Mom's dismay and Dad's amusement. "He threatened you?" "Yes." "Well what did you do?" After I filled in the details, the deputy shook his head and asked where I lived and what I did for a living. Megaherbivore management threw him, so I explained that involved working with elephants, rhinos, etc., and I did consulting.
"Damn! I guess dealing with a little guy like that don't bother you much, eh?" "No, mostly an irritant". Made him laugh.