• Random Quote

    Wit is the sudden marriage of ideas which, before their union, were not perceived to have any relation.

    — Mark Twain

Barringer Meteor Crater — Arizona

For the receptive visitor, spectacular geological formations offer a serene grandeur that can quiet the buzzing anxieties of the human condition. Most are products of imperceptible tectonic forces such as the uplift of mountains pressing upward inch by inch, or the creeping forces of erosion, employing wind, sand, ice and …

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Wildlife of the Antipodes

                                We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Placentas!   It is commonly believed that marsupials, such as the kangaroos and cuddly koalas, are ‘primitive’ and ‘inferior’ when compared to placental mammals, which includes rats, cats, whales and humans. In certain regions of the world, and among certain species, this claim has …

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From Gondwanaland to Australia

     After observing the fantastically unexpected marsupials of Australia, Charles Darwin commented: “An unbeliever…might exclaim ‘Surely two distinct Creators must have been at work.’”       Australia was once part of the super-continent Gondwana–named by the 19th century Austrian geologist Eduard Suess after a district in India. Suess …

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The Original Australians

    Strong archaeological and genetic evidence indicates that the Aborigines first arrived in Australia between 42,000 and 60,000 years ago. Remarkably, it appears that their ancestors were the first human wave to leave Africa and cross Asia, approximately 75,000 years ago, confirming the longest continuous pedigree outside of Africa. …

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Dogs of the Dream Forest

Continuing with the accidental dog theme, here is a video documentary about the many, many hundreds of Turkish street dogs dumped into the forests outside Istanbul, and the efforts of volunteer groups to sustain and protect the dogs.

Like many countries, Turkey has been largely tolerant of ‘street dogs’. In recent years, however, some Istanbul municipalities have started removing and dumping the dogs in the forests. Many irresponsible pet owners and dog breeders abandon animals there as well.

Artist and animal rights activist Fey Rubeyi became deeply concerned over the fate of these abandoned dogs. On a visit to Istanbul in September 2014, she went out with the rescue group Huysuz Ihtiyar to document the lives of the dogs. Fey, who was born and educated in Istanbul, shot the footage with a small Panasonic handycam and her iPhone. She now lives and works in California as a graphic artist.

The dogs have mainly been dumped in the Beykoz forest and Hayal Ormani (Dream Forest) on public owned property. In this terrain, the dogs cannot survive without human support to provide food, water, and shelter. Food sources are insufficient in the forests, and during the hot, dry months there is no drinking water. The dogs are sometimes harassed and even poisoned by hostile people. Cars and trucks are a grave threat to the dogs when they appear on roads searching for food and human contact.

Several dedicated groups of Turkish volunteers, primarily working from donations, have grown up to aid and support the dogs. Aside from providing food, medicine, water, and protection, they are sometimes able to find adoptive homes for a handful of the dogs.

Many of the dogs have frozen to death in the harsh Turkish winters, and Huysuz Ihtiyar (in English — ‘Grumpy Old Dog’) maintains an active dog house construction program to help keep the dogs alive in a severe environment. The group works with the Beykoz Hayvan Rehabilitasyon Merkezi (Animal Rehabilitation Center) to help provide medical care for the legions of dogs.

The documentary narration is in English with Turkish dialogue. There is also a second version posted on the account with a Turkish narration, which is titled: Hayal Ormaninin Köpekleri — Dogs of the Dream Forest

The video was edited by Randy Graham in 2015.

For more information contact Huysuz Ihtiyar on their Facebook page.

Or email— dreamforestdogs@gmail.com — for additional sources and suggestions.

 

Dingoes in the Dark

                                                             Travels to Uluru   While traveling across Australia in the 1980s, I visited Ayers Rock on several occasions. The surveyor William Gosse named the sandstone monolith for the Chief Secretary of South Australia, Sir Henry Ayers, in 1873. The local people call it Uluru. At the time, the Azaria …

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Dingoes in the Wild

This post relates closely to my article on the Azaria Chamberlain disappearance at Ayers Rock as some background on dingoes is helpful in understanding what befell her. Additionally, they are fascinating animals, now seriously endangered due to widespread persecution and officially sanctioned extermination campaigns in their Australian homeland. Dingoes are …

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‘Three Dog Ed’ is Missing

Later, Ed got a job working with animals and mentioned caring for a mountain lion. We shared an interest in animals and wildlife, and he showed me photos he had taken of tarantulas and rattlesnakes around his campsite. Ed respected wildlife and even the rattlesnakes were left alone to come and go as they pleased.

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A Video for Rio Tierra Casitas, and a Medical Mystery for Me

In early 2010 I had the chance to work on a video project in Wickenburg, Arizona for a bed & breakfast named Rio Tierra Casitas. In truth, they are more expansive than a B&B since they rent out 3 small guest houses for short and long term lodging.  Located along …

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Triumph of the Shrill – Christopher Hitchens vs. Michael Moore on 9/11

A decade after Hitchens’ ballyhooed invasion, Iraq is a wretched basket case, a nation riddled with sectarian violence, religious extremism, ruined infrastructure, poverty, high rates of childhood cancer, and sheer human misery. The country is on the verge of disintegration.

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