My Greek kitty crew

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Don't deprive them of their happiness


."Love animals: God has given them the rudiments of thought and joy untroubled. Do not trouble their joy, don't harrass them, don't deprive them of their happiness, don't work against God's intent. Man, do not pride yourself on superiority to animals; they are without sin, and you, with your greatness, defile the earth by your apppearance on it, and leave the traces of your foulness after you - alas, it is true of almost every one of us!"

Quote by Dostoyevsky

The greatness of nations??

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"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can
be
judged by the way its animals are treated."

Quote by Gandhi

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Bless the cat man

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A couple years ago my husband spent a few hours around the spectacular Acropolis in Athens - a favourite place we keep returning to. During the walk he met an old greek man who had the company of a couple of cats. He told my husband that he fed the stray cats and without the man having asked for money my husband gave him a donation towards feeding the cats. Later in the day he called me and told me the story of the encounter with this 'bushy faced' kind man who fed the cats. I absolutely loved it because I get so distressed about the state of the stray cats in Greece (and dogs for that matter).

Then this evening - doing a bit of browsing as I always do looking for little stories, I suddenly came across this picture of the "cat man" in Athens! I felt certain it had to be the man my husband had met... and sure enough. It was the same man.

I wonder what his story is, but whatever it is, I want to say bless the "cat man".

Squirrels with attitude!!

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Well, talking about squirrels... I must introduce you to the squirrels that live inside Central Park in New York. Here we are talking about squirrels with REAL attitude!

A few months ago I visited NY for a week and spent each morning feeding the birds and squirrels in Central Park. The squirrels are the most fun because they are so audacious picking peanuts right out of your hand if you let them. Be warned though, they can get a little carried away and try and nip a bit of your finger as well :-) But sweet and cheeky - and they most certainly made my day!


If you like beautiful animal/nature photography go visit palemale.com It's a photographer who takes pictures of animal life in NY... and don't think that you won't see extraordinary animal photography just because it's right in the middle of NY. These photos are truly exquisite.

Monday, April 27, 2009

One well-pampered little squirrel

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Squirrel and Dog

Squirrel and Dog

Squirrel and Dog

Finnegan the squirrel, was found injured and malnourished in the Seattle area in September 2005, when he was but a few days old. He was brought to Debby Cantlon, an area resident with a reputation for taking in sick and injured animals and nursing them back to health.

What happened next was a bit unexpected. Ms. Cantlon reported that her black and white Papillon dog, Mademoiselle Giselle, who was pregnant at the time, twice dragged the kennel in which Finnegan was being cared for across the house and deposited it next to her own doggie bed.


After Mademoiselle Giselle gave birth to her pups but continued to pay as much (or more) attention to Finnegan than to her own litter, Ms. Cantlon decided to let Finnegan out of his cage and see what happened. And what happened was that Mademoiselle Giselle adopted Finnegan as one of her own. Two days after giving birth mama dog Giselle allowed Finnegan to nurse; family photo's and a video tape show her encouraging him to suckle alongside her litter of five pups. Finnegan made himself at home with his new litter mates, nuzzling nose-to-nose for a nap after feeding.

Finnegan eventually grew strong and healthy and was successfully released back into nature. It is said that he came back and visited the family on a few occassions showing them his new friends - three other squirrels.


Giving of yourself freely

"Not to hurt our humble brethren is our first duty to them, but to stop there is not enough. We have a higher mission - to be of service to them wherever they require it".    

St. Francis of Assisi 

Friday, April 24, 2009

Impoverishment of the human spirit

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"The indifference, callousness and contempt that so many people exhibit toward animals is evil first because it results in great suffering in animals, and second because it results in an incalculably great impoverishment of the human spirit".

Quote by anthropologist and humanist Ashley Montagu

From a principle I will not post a photo of a mistreated animal but instead
choose to focus on the amazing tenderness animals can bring out in humans.



Thursday, April 23, 2009

Couldn't agree more Albert!

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“There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: 
music and cats.” 

Qoute by Albert Schweitzer

Always a reason to be kind

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Did you know...
Swans are not known to attack humans without cause, and actually CAN REMEMBER HUMANS that have been kind to them.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Talking of hummingbirds

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One of my favourite mottos is "Multum in Parvo" (meaning: much in little), maybe that's why I'm so fascinated by hummingbirds.

Here's a few facts about the Ruby-Throated hummingbird:
  • They weigh about 3-4 g (an American nickle weighs 5 g - so less than a nickle!).
  • Their wings beat about 60-80 times per second in normal flight, but up to 200 times per second in courtship dives.
  • It can fly about 845 km non-stop during migration. It flies with a speed about 25 mph (40 km per hour). This means that it takes about 20 hours for it to make this non-stop migration. How does it do it one has to wonder?!!
  • Its heart beats about 250 times per minute while at rest and about 1,220 per minute while flying! That's a whole lot of heartbeats during a 845 km non-stop migration!!
  • Most hummingbirds die within their first year; those that don't probably live an average of 3 years or so although the oldest known is listed at about 9 years.
  • It has a body temperature of 40.5 degrees C but on cold nights, it can lower its body temperature by about 20 degrees C, thus conserving energy. The next morning it speeds up its metabolism and get its body temperature back up to normal within a few minutes.
  • It has about 940 feathers.
What an amazing teensy little creature!!
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Thursday, April 2, 2009

A hummingbird nest

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I simply adore hummingbirds and have often marvelled at pictures of hummingbirds sucking nectar from beautifully coloured flowers. But I've never seen a picture of a hummingbird nest let alone given any thought to how small a hummingbird nest would have to be. Today I found these pictures of a hummingbird nest and will you have a look at how tiny it is! And have a look at those jelly bean sized eggs!!

Here's a few facts about a humming bird nest:
On average a hummingbird nest will only be 1 1/2 inches in diameter, about the size of a ping pong ball. They will be cup shaped and made out of plant material that's held together with spider webs. Bits of lichen can be found on the outside for camouflage and the inside will be lined with plant down.