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MONTEVRAIN - Police and firefighters were desperately hunting for a tiger on the loose near Paris Thursday after a local resident spotted the fearsome animal in a car park and sounded the alert, authorities said. Police animal brigade walking the streets of Montevrain, France. Credit: Associated Press Backed up by a helicopter overhead, firefighters armed with tranquilising guns combed the area in the Seine-et-Marne district near the French capital. Authorities ordered residents to stay indoors and children were kept at school, as several people came forward saying they had seen the tiger on the prowl. "We have been running after it since this morning, police officers are trying to...

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,...

WASHINGTON - A mild manner and a fondness for fatty treats like fish or meat scraps may have helped cats evolve into the tame yet independent-minded pets they are today, researchers said Monday. Credit: Getty Creative After that, it was people's preference for cats with certain appearances, like white paws, that played a key role in winnowing down the 38 species known today, said a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. "Using advanced genome sequencing technology, we were able to shed light on the genetic signatures of cats' unique biology and survival skills," said Wes Warren, associate professor of genetics at the Washington University School of...

ZAMBOANGA, Philippines - A dog handler in the southern Philippines narrowly avoided death after his dog alerted him to a bomb just before it exploded, police said Monday. Credit: Getty Editorial Officer Manuel Ynid was only injured when the bomb hidden in a cardboard box exploded in the strife-torn southern port city of Zamboanga late Sunday, said the city police spokesman Chief Inspector Ariel Huesca. Ynid and his bomb-sniffing Belgian Malinois called Diego were part of a team that was investigating an earlier explosion at a massage parlour, Huesca said. The first bomb had caused no casualties but as Ynid was approaching a cardboard box, the dog reacted, indicating it had detected a...

WASHINGTON - A young American naturalist, filmmaker and adventurer in the Amazon set off an Internet stir Thursday after he claimed he offered himself for dinner to a giant snake for a TV show. "I'm Paul Rosolie and I'm about to be the first person to be eaten alive by an anaconda," he said in a 30-second video on Twitter promoting a new show, "Eaten Alive," to be telecast on the Discovery Channel on December 7. A longer teaser posted by the network on YouTube shows Rosolie donning "a custom-built snake-proof suit" to enter the belly of the fearsome reptilian beast head-first. "It's a tease and a promo for now," a Discovery Channel spokesman told AFP on Thursday, adding that further...

According to staff at the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium in Japan, Fuji, the first dolphin in the world to receive a prosthetic tail fin, has died of liver disease at an age estimated to be about 45. Credit: Getty Creative In early October, aquarium officials observed Fuji's appetite decreasing and her swimming patterns becoming unstable. She passed away on November 1. VIDEO: Dolphins Give Each Other Unique Names Fuji arrived at the aquarium in 1976, after having been captured off Ito City, on Japan's eastern shore. In 2002, an unknown disease caused 75 percent of her tail fin to rot. Without the fin, a dolphin cannot maneuver in the water. But thanks to a rubberized prosthetic tail fin...