Gruff Coyboy Now Herds 500 Cats in Wee Florida Town

Cat Guards Caboodle Ranch

Craig Grant, a gruff looking 62-year-old who wears a cowboy hat and flamboyant mustache, is an unlikely mayor of an adorable Florida cat city. Years ago one cat insinuated herself into his life in Jacksonville and now he runs the cutest cat sanctuary you’ve ever seen, Caboodle Ranch. More than 500 neutered cats roam a tiny village of wee houses, churches and stores, built specially to house the cat colony on a 25-acre tree farm.

Grant told PlanetGreen recently that he never liked cats till his son left him Pepper for a couple months. “I didn’t like cats, but I agreed to keep him. I wasn’t used to being alone and I guess Pepper wasn’t either. We slowly began to get along,” Craig says on his website. Then he took in more cats, got more complaints and bought land and a trailer 100 miles out of town.  It’s been expanding with abused and neglected cats and their buildings ever since.

“I moved the shed out to the property and made a little cabin out of it. I thought it would be for me, but many of my cats wanted to sleep next to me… so I moved back into the office trailer where we had more room,” Craig says. Now he wants to build a better medical office and has raised $2,500 of the $9,000 needed. His assistant Cyndi notes in the local paper that he’ll probably end up sleeping in there, too, to

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Video: Dog Sings Blues, Accompanied by Harmonica

When Tom takes out his harmonica, Roger sings along.

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Sudan Plans Classy Cities That Look Like Giraffe and Rhino From Above

Rhino City

The capital Juba, which now has slums and exactly three paved roads, would move 10 miles away and be remade as a Dubai-like “Rhino City,” with police HQ in the eye and an amusement park in the ear.

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Fawns Like to Nibble, Volunteer Visit to Wildlife Rehabber Shows

5 fawns

A room full of fawns

Today I got to visit a wildlife rehabiliator near Poughkeepsie who is far more experienced and patient than I am. Celie would need to be to handle the 98 animals in her care–including a pack of dogs, horses, chickens, birds and other permanent residents. But the reason my friend Vicki and I went to visit was that Celie got slammed by a big baby season.

Every May and June wildlife rehabilitators around the country get tons of calls from people who have found baby animals and birds. The usual correct response is to tell the person to put the animal back in exactly the spot where it was found because mom was just out getting food and she’s going to be pissed when she gets back. Wildlife rehabbers usually won’t take the animals unless they’re injured, orphaned or out on their own way too soon. But in many cases people know that the animals are orphaned because they find mom’s dead body nearby. In the case of many of the animals at Celie’s gorgeous farm, they were hit by cars.

possum family

For weeks straight she was getting many calls a day, all leading to more and more animals. She seemed to never say no. So Vicki and I headed up to help out. Really Vicki is used to mass animal raising, but I feel like I’m a farmhand just managing 8 or 9 squirrels. Basically I figured I could clean cages,

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A Whale Wars Horror Flick: Harpoon: The Reykjavik Whale Watching Massacre

We’ve seen the battle between whalers and whale-watchers turned into a reality TV hit in Whale Wars; now it’s moving to the horror film genre. Iceland’s Harpoon: The Reykjavik Whale Watching Massacre features whale watchers cast adrift at sea who are preyed upon by rogue whalers.

You’d think Iceland–where whaling and defying international opinion–are considered almost a patriotic duty, would produce a film with  the Sea Shepherd crew on the rampage. But this film seems to be, dare I say it, more subtle. The family of whalers has gone mad–after they aren’t allowed to hunt whales anymore. The trailer shows the whalers shooting harpoons at someone in the water. And the tourist cries out, “No! Please! I’m a friend of nature! No! Argghh!” So, the tourists pretty much had it coming. I’d want to harpoon anybody who said that.

I haven’t had access to the film, which played at the Glasgow Film Festival in February and is set to be released in the UK on DVD soon. The MonstersandCritics blog horror fan pans it as “just another average horror film with various characters being pitted against a family of psychotic whale hunters.” But I’m glad to see the whale issue now playing out in pop culture. Hey, every movie can’t be The Cove.

Where to Go to See Whales Where to Watch Animals in Europe

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Visitors to a Chinese Zoo Feed Carp Bananas by Hand

American zoos frown on feeding the animals, but the Nanning Zoo in China isn’t so persnickety. Visitors feed their carp bananas by hand.

What I can make out from on online translation of the zoo’s story: people in Guangxi got some bad bananas, so naturally they brought them to the zoo. And, of course, the zoo didn’t mind people giving the fruit to the monkeys and hornbills. Then, almost inevitably, somebody fed them to the gold fish. And now, as long as you peel the bananas, the carp think of them as a treat.

And it seems to be cultural: only this one pool of fish like bananas. There’s another pool in the zoo with the same kind of fish but they have “no enthusiasm on the banana.”

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Which Animal is Having More Fun? The Horny Parrot or Spiteful Dolphin?

Is it the horny, endangered parrot, pointed out by Zoologix? (This flightless Kakapo name Sirocco was hand-raised and imprinted on people. So it’s only natural he wants to hook-up with people. Watch out, he’s looking for more friends on facebook)[youtube=]Or the spiteful dolphins, who flick jellyfish out of the sea at every opportunity?[youtube=]

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