October 24th, 2006


Go Deer Go!

Deer chases boy. Uses him as salt lick.

"Seventh-grader Kevin Cox was reminded this weekend that animals are unpredictable, and sometimes, just plain odd...

...Finally, the deer overtook Kevin and got a little overly friendly.

"It caught up to me, and then it jumped on my back and started licking my ear, so I pushed it off and it started licking my ear again," Kevin said. "So I just kept on running, and there were coaches with sweat shirts and they yelled at me to come towards them. So I ran towards them, and they shooed the deer off with their sweat shirts."

Kevin and his coaches have a theory on why the deer chased him.

"The coaches said that it wanted the salt from the sweat on my back, and, um, I think it was using me as a human salt lick," said Kevin."

That kid is lucky the deer just licked him. It could've been much worse. Check out the genius below who doused himself in deer musk to aid his hunting trip. (I like the fact that his wife kept filming while the deer beat the crap out of him.)

new orleans, fleur

"I have shed enough tears for two lifetimes."

Local columnist, Chris Rose, shares his battle with depression since the storm.

"Post-traumatic stress disorder is bandied about as a common diagnosis in this community, but I think that's probably not the case," he told me. "What people are suffering from here is what I call Katrina Syndrome -- marked by sleep disturbance, recent memory impairment and increased irritability."

Thanks to swampytad.

Memphis Manatee

Manatee swims far from home and winds up in Memphis. Now the race is on to move the happy wanderer back to warmer waters.

Activists concerned for life of "Memphis manatee"

Wolf River Harbor - A manatee rescue team from Sea World Orlando is on the way to Memphis to rescue our warm-water visitor, and their arrival can't come too soon... as our temperatures keep dropping. Memphis has no manatee experts, so police and the coast guard are following the lead of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources agency and Florida Game and Fish experts.

They're trying to keep the animal corralled until proper help can arrive.

Normally you'll find what some call "sea cows" in the warm waters of the coast from Florida to Texas. But they do like to travel and have even made it all the way up to New England.

But the midwest? Cargill manager Joe Sparks thought it was a joke. "Police officers came in the door and said someone called in and said a hippo was down here and I told him to be careful and watch for the elephants." laughed Sparks, a Cargill Inc. manager.

These gentle creatures are not predators, and just wander around looking for food. The Memphis manatee has attracted quite a crowd since word got out, and not all of them are happy.

Here's the problem: Manatees need warm water to survive. They can't live in water below 60 degrees without suffering from hypothermia. The water here is said to be warmer than the Mississippi river, but I'm told the river level rose about 5 feet overnight, sending more cold water into this harbor.

And manatee lovers say this one does NOT need to stay.

"It needs to be gotten out of the water." said Kathy Curtis of midtown who isn't one bit happy about the lack of action from wildlife officials. She wants the manatee captured, removed and kept warm until it can be moved to Florida.

"They made no effort to try to keep this manatee from going back into the Mississippi where it could have been struck by a tree or anything." she said. Curtiss has gone swimming with Florida's manatees several times and knows how gentle and curious they are. She doesn't want to see it die as Memphis temperatures continue to drop.

And neither do any of the neighboring businesses here who have pledged to do all they can to save this gentle creature.

"If there's anything we can do, we'll give 'em all the assistance we can."

Manatees are noriously hard to catch, and have to be kept constantly wet when moved.. but it can be done. Local officials don't want to chance doing the job themselves because they don't know these animals.

That's why the Sea World team's arrival, probably sometime Wednesday, will be crucial to the survivial of the Memphis manatee.