Australia Articles - PawNation

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SYDNEY - Australia unveiled its newest national park, Everlasting Swamp, on Wednesday as thousands of delegates gathered in Sydney for the start of the once-in-a-decade World Parks Congress. The Australian wetlands. Credit: Getty Editorial The week-long forum organised by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is set to lay out the global agenda for protected areas for the next 10 years. "The hope of the congress is not bemoaning about the fate of nature, but rather looking at it as the provider of solutions, of human well-being," IUCN's Director-General Julia Marton-Lefevre told reporters. She spoke as the New South Wales government announced that Everlasting Swamp, i...

Rare Beaked Whale Washes Up in Australia

SYDNEY - A rare beaked whale washed up in Australia Tuesday, exciting researchers who know little about an animal that spends much of its time diving at depth far from shore. Baird's Beaked Whale. Credit: Fred Hochstaedter/Flickr The three-to-four metre (10-13 feet) long whale was found dead at Redhead Beach, some 150 kilometres (93 miles) north of Sydney, with experts examining it and taking specimens before sending its head to the Australian Museum in Sydney. "It is sad but also exciting as we can learn so much more about the animal," Organisation for the Rescue and Research of Cetaceans in Australia president Ronny Ling told AFP. "We don't know much about them, we rarely get to see th...

MELBOURNE - A lucky koala was recovering Friday after being caught by firefighters when it fell unconscious from a tree before being given mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Emergency crews were called to the Melbourne suburb of Langwarrin on Thursday night after reports that an injured animal was lying on the road after being hit by a car. When officials arrived, they found the furry native marsupial had climbed a tree for shelter and firefighters were brought in to bring it down. "We believed it had died in the tree, just when we were trying to rescue it," Langwarrin Country Fire Authority's Sean Curtin told Fairfax radio. "Then it fell out of the tree and the members caught it in a blank...

Australian Crocodile Kills Fisherman

SYDNEY - A white-headed crocodile nicknamed Michael Jackson has been shot dead, reports said Tuesday, after the predator apparently killed a fisherman in Australia's north. Credit: Associated Press Authorities were called in when a 57-year-old man disappeared after wading into the croc-infested Adelaide River to disentangle his fishing line late on Monday. Police said the man's wife was with him on the river bank but did not see the moment the animal, believed to be 4.5 metres (15 foot) long, attacked. "The initial information is that she did not see him taken but (heard) a scream and then turned around and saw a tail splashing in the water," Northern Territory duty superintendent Jo Fol...

GOLD COAST - Australian authorities struggled to rescue a beached baby whale Wednesday and were forced to suspend the operation as fading light hampered efforts to return it to sea. Credit: Getty Editorial The whale, reportedly a two-year-old humpback, washed up on Palm Beach on the popular Gold Coast late Tuesday, with rescuers working for hours to try and free it. Hundreds of people gathered at the Queensland beach to watch the rescue, which included fitting a specially-designed harness to the mammal as workers from marine park Sea World tried to coax it back into the water. Rescuers were able to briefly return the whale to sea before it became stuck on a sandbar slightly further offsh...

SYDNEY - A 3.7 metre (12 feet) crocodile on Monday attacked his keeper during a school holiday feeding show at an Australian zoo, dragging him into the water before he managed to break free. Credit: Getty Editorial Handler Trent Burton was feeding male croc John when it grabbed him by the hand in front of horrified onlookers at Shoalhaven zoo, 160 kilometres (99 miles) south of Sydney. The local Smith Coast Register newspaper said he was rushed to hospital with bites to both hands, although they were not thought to be serious. Shaken elderly witness Marlene Orr said it was "the scariest thing I've ever seen in my life". Another witness Michelle Brady told the newspaper that the trainer ...