A missing 3-year-old autistic boy who was feared to have been abducted was found safe Monday — after surviving three days alone in the Australian bush. Anthony ‘AJ’ Elfalak, who went missing from his family’s home in Putty on Friday, was spotted Monday morning as he desperately scooped water into his mouth in a creek less than half a mile from home. “Stand by — I’ve got the boy,” a rescuer in a police helicopter said, according to video footage released by New South Wales Police that showed AJ sitting in dirty water up to his waist as he desperately drank. Other heartwarming video footage showed family members falling to their knees and raising their hands to the skies as they learned AJ had been found, with repeated, triumphant screams of, “He’s alive!” AJ’s dad, Anthony Elfalak — who had assumed his son was abducted — called the rescue a “miracle. “He has been bitten by ants, and he has fallen over, but he is alive. He’s alive!” the father told television crews, according to 9News. The boy was taken to hospital to be evaluated but appeared healthy aside from some scrapes from a fall and a diaper rash, officials said.
Joy & Wonder
These amazing pictures showing the movement of a diving kingfisher are the result of a photographer’s two-year wait for the perfect photo. 47-year-old Vince Burton used a slow shutter speed to capture the trail of the bird as it plunged into a pond at up to 25mph (40kmh). The torpedo-like blue kingfisher can be seen hurtling beak-first towards the water as it hunts for fish to feed its young chicks near Norwich in Norfolk. Accountant Vince used the latest photographic techniques to reduce his shutter speed and darken the background, capturing a striking image of the kingfisher’s dive without using photoshop. He said: “I was working with this farmland site for four years. It’s taken me the best part of two years to get this shot.” “Normally one kingfisher holds the territory for a year and then welcomes a partner in from a neighboring territory. “These images were taken while the kingfishers were raising their brood, which fledged a month later.”
It was a precious and rare vial of the 1905 perfume, L’Origan, that decided me on the hobby. I openened the box in which it had been delivered and was immediately enveloped in the scent that led one newspaper reporter to exclaim: “All Paris smells of L’Origan!” The perfume had leaked slightly. It was a moment of ecstasy. I was smelling the world as people long past had smelled it. The men who made this fragrance were now just footnotes on the fading pages of history… but this was their legacy and I, now, was a part of it. From that day forth perfume and the scent of the world became my absolute obsession. I acquired all of the rarest and most unusual perfumes and ingredients I could and began to make my own fragrances. As a 16 year old, my first vacation to Europe blew my mind. But it wasn’t the Eiffel Tower, Buckingham Palace, or the Venetian canals that stayed with me long after the trip ended — it was the mundane aspects of life: the things that locals take for granted: the color of road markings and signs, the posters in shop windows, the local snack foods, and the sounds and — most-significantly — smells of the place.
Cat owners may find it preposterous that scientists even question whether cats truly love their humans. Those who have felt their cat affectionately rub against their leg, or looked into its understanding eyes, know the solace and comfort that felines can bring. Yet cats are as motivated by food and shelter as many humans, and there is an evolutionary advantage to them feigning interest in their masters in exchange for such things. Modern science allows us to peer into animals’ brains, yet to truly know the answer to such a question would require asking animals to verbalize their feelings directly — and except for a few rare instances, animals cannot speak human languages. One study in PLOS One suggests that cats are, at the very least, more independent than their canine counterparts. Animal behavior experts Alice Potter and Daniel Simon Mills wrote that “adult cats are typically quite autonomous, even in their social relationships, and not necessarily dependent on others to provide a sense of security and safety.” Samantha Bell, a cat behavior expert at Best Friends Animal Society, noted that cats display their sentiments toward us in observable ways.
Scientists have unveiled an extraordinary find — a lion cub found in the Arctic that may be the best preserved Ice Age animal ever found. The female cub, nicknamed Sparta, was found by a local resident named Boris Berezhnev in 2018 along Russia’s Semyuelyakh River. Berezhnev had been searching for mammoth tusks, which he had a licence to collect. “Sparta is probably the best preserved Ice Age animal ever found, and is more or less undamaged, apart from the fur being a bit ruffled,” said Love Dalén, co-author of a new study on the find, in a news release from Stockholm University Friday. “She even had the whiskers preserved.” Sparta, estimated to have died 28,000 years ago, was one of two lion cubs described in the study, published this week in the journal Quarternary. The other was a male cub found by Berezhnev in 2017, just 15 metres from Sparta. At first, the researchers who recovered the cubs in Siberian permafrost thought they were siblings, but the male cub, named Boris, turned out to be much older — having died 43,000 years ago, radiocarbon dating showed.
Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are diseases of the brain in which gradual degeneration of neurons leads to loss of speech, memory, and thinking. Existing remedies are aimed only at suppressing symptoms, but cannot stop the process of neurodegeneration itself. Now Russian scientists have synthesized chemical compounds that can stop the degeneration of neurons in Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other severe brain pathologies. New molecules of pyrrolyl- and indolylazine classes activate intracellular mechanisms to combat one of the main causes of “aged” brain diseases—an excess of so-called amyloid structures that accumulate in the human brain with age. Experts from various institutes including Ural Federal University took part in the study, published in the European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. “Our compounds activate the synthesis of specific heat shock proteins and cause their accumulation in the cell,” said research co-author, professor of the Department of Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry at UrFU Irina Utepova. Important advantages of compounds from the series of pyrrolyl- and indolylazine classes are a profitable synthesis technology and low toxicity.