The Rio Grande is disappearing

The story of the Rio Grande is similar to that of other desert mountain rivers in the U.S. Southwest, from the Colorado to the Gila. The water was apportioned to farmers and other users at a time when water levels were near historic highs. Now, as a megadrought has descended on the West, the most severe in 1,200 years, the flows are at crisis levels.

And to make things even more uncertain, the drought is accompanied by an aridification of the West — a prolonged drying that scientists say may become a permanent fixture in the region. The number and scope of wildfires are also increasing sharply; New Mexico’s ongoing Calf Canyon/Hermits Peak Fire has now burned 315,000 acres.

The concern of Tricia Snyder and others is that much of the Rio Grande River — already greatly compromised by channelization, dams, and irrigation — is on a trajectory to disappear and take out the bosque forests, fish, and other creatures that live in it and along it. “We’re past the point of easy answers,” she says.

How we got to the edge of disaster – and what is to be done – is central to this article. Please, read on and join in the fight to rescue this historic river.

Mama llama trauma

Trooper Levi Macy responded to a call in Eastern Oregon about a wayward llama on a highway onramp…”So, there I was minding my own business when I got a call from OSP Dispatch, telling me that there was a llama, yes a llama, in the road on the I-84 onramp at milepost 304 eastbound. I got there and sure enough a displeased mama llama was laying on the onramp. The owner was taking three llamas from Washington to Utah in the bed of a 1500 Dodge short bed pickup. The truck had a homemade stock rack that didn’t quiet hold the three 🦙 🦙 🦙 (while it took) an uphill corner. Fortunately enough for the llama and myself, the speeds were slow, and traffic was minimal.

“The owner got about a mile down the road before he realized his mama llama was missing out of the back of the truck. But of course, when he stopped his truck, the other two llamas bailed out, running free on the interstate. The owner ran back and gave me the rope to hook to mama llama’s harness. Mama llama refused to get up as you could see by her displeased facial expression … so I told (the owner) that I would llama sit, while he wrangled up the others …”

And so it goes on [what some thought was going to be] a slow day in Eastern Oregon.

Morgan Freeman Turns His Mississippi Ranch Into Honeybee Sanctuary

❝ Morgan Freeman has long been known for having a voice of gold, using his clout and vocal talents for such worthy causes as environmental conservationist group One Earth. But it has also become apparent that the beloved actor also has a heart of gold–especially now that he has devoted his ranch to helping save honeybees.

The 81-year old actor took up beekeeping on his 124-acre Mississippi ranch as a simple hobby in 2014, largely in reaction to the mass die-offs that were occurring and continue to this day.

❝ “There is a concerted effort for bringing bees back onto the planet … We do not realize that they are the foundation, I think, of the growth of the planet, the vegetation … I have a lot of flowering things, and I have a gardener too.”

“As she takes care of the bees too, all she does is figure out, ‘OK, what would they like to have?’ so we have got acres and acres of clover, and we have some planting stuff like lavender, I have got like, maybe 140 magnolia trees, big blossoms.”

❝ While Freeman’s efforts may not be enough on their own to turn back the tide of adverse factors facing bees, his example is an inspiring signal that people are beginning to grow more conscious of the winged pollinators’ importance to humanity.

An example to us all.

Thanks, UrsaRodinia

SPCA called for animal rescue — for a fiberglass garden ornament


Animal rescuers in Scotland said a reported distressed donkey left tied to a backyard fence turned out to be a fiberglass garden ornament.

The Scottish SPCA said investigators responded to a report Tuesday of a donkey tied to a fence without shelter in Airdrie and they arrived to discover the caller was either a prankster or not an expert in donkey identification.

“The caller stated the donkey was kept in the back garden of a house in Airdrie and tied to a fence without any shelter,” Senior Inspector Bill Little said. “When I arrived, the owner asked me if I wanted a laugh and when she showed me the ornamental donkey it certainly gave me a chuckle.”

The donkey is made of fiberglass and goes by the name Joshua. He used to be kept at the side of the house and could be seen by people walking by so it’s possible someone called us as a practical joke,” he said. “However, it may be that someone was genuinely concerned as it is a rather lifelike model.”

Georgie Baxendale, Joshua’s owner, said she was amused by the confusion.

“This is the funniest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. I used to have two donkeys and bought Joshua as a reminder,” she said…I think this could have been a joke or maybe the person who reported it just doesn’t know donkeys very well as real ones don’t stand as still as Joshua!”

Actually, we have a neighbor named Scratch who does his very best to stand absolutely still all day – except for breakfast and dinner.

Not a garden ornament

Highway patrol copper rescues tiny dog on California freeway

The California Highway Patrol is being lauded for its efforts in rescuing a Chihuahua off the I-680 freeway Friday.

The Contra Costa CHP posted a photo of the rescue on Twitter saying…”This little dog needed some help off I-680 freeway today. We’re glad he’s safe.”

On Saturday, the CHP said in a tweet that the Contra Costa Animal Control in Martinez, California, had taken the puppy into their care.

The rescue picture showed the Chihuahua perched on a roadway median on Interstate Highway 680 during rush hour.

CHP officer John Fransen said Saturday that a CHP officer spotted the small dog on the highway’s concrete center divider around 6 p.m. while driving south on Highway 680 near the North Main Street overpass.

The officer came out of his car and used a protein bar to coax the Chihuahua toward him and was able to pick up the dog.

Although Fransen said he didn’t know how the dog ended up on the freeway, he said, it’s likely that someone left the animal there.

“As sad as it sounds, it actually happens pretty often,” he said.

Good for you, dude. Worth applauding a cop who understands his responsibilities extend to more than traffic and murders. Especially when none of the civilians roaring by on the freeway stopped to help the little dog.

Woman abandoned by her lover after falling down a 15-foot well while having sex

No – I don’t know if this is the actual well

Spanish police are hoping to speak to a man who allegedly left 21-year-old Edelia Aponte at the bottom of a well after she fell in while they were having sex.

Aponte got stuck in the water at the bottom of the 15-foot hole for about a half hour after failing to notice that the wood covering the well’s opening was loose.

Police found out about the young woman’s situation after they received an anonymous phone call alerting them about her whereabouts. It’s possible that the man, whom she had only just met that evening, placed the call.

If Ciudad Real police are able to track him down, the man could be charged with failing to aid someone in need of assistance.

Firefighters rescued Aponte from the well and she was taken to a hospital and treated for hypothermia.

“It could have ended in tragedy,” fire service spokesman Leni Portillo told El Crisol de Ciudad Real. “Luckily, she could swim and she wasn’t knocked out as she fell.”

The range of preparations requisite for modern impulsive sex never seems limited. I guess swimming lessons are now required.

Inmates rescue three boys whose craft overturns in creek

Larry Bohn, Nelson Pettis and Jon Fowler – give ’em some more good time!

Prisoners working in a nearby park helped save three boys whose kayak overturned in a Washington state creek, fire officials said Thursday.

Three brothers — ages 8, 10 and 16 — were floating down Salmon Creek near Salmon Creek Regional Park Wednesday afternoon when their kayak overturned, Clark County Fire District 6 Chief Jerry Green told NBC News. The park is in Washington state just north of Portland, Ore.

Ten prison inmates from the Larch Corrections Center near Yacolt, Wash., were doing park maintenance when they heard screams for help and responded quickly…

Inmate Nelson Pettis, 37, jumped into the strong current, floating downstream until he could grab the two younger boys and help them to a pile of floating debris, according to the newspaper.

“I don’t think I was thinking at all,” Pettis told The Columbian. “I was just really concentrating on getting them to safety.”

Inmate Larry Bohn, 29, helped Pettis with the rescue: “…They just seemed really scared”…

The 16-year-old boy was able to swim to shore…

Inmate Jon Fowler, 28, waited for the rescue team to arrive and helped them inflate their rescue boat, The Columbian reported…

The water was “very cold” and estimated to be moving at 25 mph, Green said. The brothers were treated for mild hypothermia, but otherwise there were no other injuries, he said. Two of the inmates were also treated for hypothermia…

Bohn and Pettis reportedly had taken off their shirts, wrapping them around the kids to keep them warm…

“I don’t think we’re heroes by any means,” inmate Fowler told The Columbian. “I think we just did what any good person would do…”

Happens more often than you think. As tough as I am on warehousing violent criminals, there are scores who are on the inside who probably shouldn’t be there in the first place. But, then, that’s a topic for a discussion about our mediocre judicial system.

Shark falls from the sky onto California golf course

A course marshal at the San Juan Hills Golf Club found the leopard shark on Monday afternoon and brought it to the clubhouse…

It had puncture wounds where it appeared a bird had snagged it from the Pacific Ocean, about five miles away.

The marshal put the creature, which was bleeding but still alive, into his golf buggy and sped off back to the clubhouse.

They stuck the two-foot-long shark into fresh water before somebody remembered it came from the sea, so they got some sea salt from the kitchen and mixed it in.

Another employee rushed the shark to the ocean where McCormack says it was very still for a few seconds before twisting around and speeding off…

There are probably seventeen mysterioso stories about the event working their way through the California psyche at this very moment.